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In the past few years we have witnessed a revolution in our social lives; everything is online from our business to our pass time activities. More and more businesses are making it a priority to have a strong online presence simply because there is plenty of money in the online business. If you are reading this then it is safe to say you are also looking to have your slice of this online pie. As a marketer having and maintaining an online presence that is not only strong but reputable is supposed to be one of your top priorities if not the most important priority. There are so many ways that one can this, so many technical terms such as the ubiquitous Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and it is easy for you to be bogged down with this and forget about all else. Well, this is not in any way meant to downplay the importance of SEO; it is actually very brilliant in itself. However, it is quite easy for marketers to overlook the second largest search engine available on the internet; YouTube.
The Importance of s Strong Presence
At this point I am sure that there is a modicum of skepticism in you that is telling you that YouTube is not all that important because it is only a video search engine. Well, sorry to inform you that you are wrong because it is important. Here are the reasons why YouTube counts:
• YouTube alone is significantly larger than other search engines such as Yahoo, Bing, Ask and AOL....Put Together
• In each and every month the YouTube Search engine receive approximately 3 billion searches
• On average for every 2 searches on the internet, there is 1 search that is on YouTube. That is 50 per cent of the searches!!
• YouTube is able to attract more adults aged 18-35 living in the US than any other cable network in the market
• In each and every month, there are approximately 6 billion hours that are spent on YouTube alone.
This is just the tip of the iceberg on all the mind boggling statistics concerning YouTube. In the event that you are not interested in having a slice of this lucrative pie, then there is a chance that your marketing campaign has the bar set a tad bit too low.
Breaking Down a YouTube Video
Let us begin with a rhetorical question. When is the last time you took time off your busy schedule and logged in to YouTube to engage yourself in a few minutes of watching a self-promotional video that was poorly produces, boring and at the end of it all it was not meant to help you to achieve anything? Well, no need to answer that one. Nobody has time for such self-punishment. There are few reasons as to why people will visit YouTube and they are very simple:
1. They are faced with a specific problem and they need to find a quick answer to it.
2. They are looking to pass time and enjoy a few entertaining videos of cats playing the piano or whatever tickles their fancy.
Being a professional business, you should always seek to offer the first option: a solution to a problem. As a rule of thumb you should always steer clear of self-promotional videos. However, there is an exception for when you are aiming for a pre-roll advertising but that shall be covered later in the article. Your bread and butter should always be answers to specific problems or videos that are beneficial to the watchers in that they will walk away having gained some bit of information. If you are looking to launch a video marketing campaign on this YouTube platform then there are just but 3 essential steps that you need to be aware of.
1. Launching a Platform
2. Creating and Producing the right Video Content
3. Extensive YouTube SEO followed by Marketing
Launching a Platform
Let us begin with the first steps. You need to develop your platform through meticulous planning. This means that you need to come up with a strategy that is so sound that you will have no problem in risking a significant amount of your marketing funds on it. This may sound more daunting and formidable than it actually is; however, it is quite important. The chief components of a successful video marketing strategy are as follows:
1. Identifying the key objectives of your campaign
2. Identifying the right target audience
3. Identifying the most appropriate type of video that you will produce
Identifying your Key Objectives This is probably self-explanatory but for the sake of exhaustively covering all aspects there is need to cover this area. It is true for almost all aspects of life that if you do not have a clear cut objective then it follows that you do not know where you desire to go. Concomitantly, if you have no idea where it is you are going then there is no way that you will ever get there. A chief component of planning is setting up goals that are SMART. This means that your goals need to be specific and significant. They also need to be measurable in that you can keep track of your progress. Your goals need to be agreed upon; ensure that all the stakeholders of the strategy have agreed on the objectives so as to ensure that they commit themselves to ensuring that it is achieved. They also need to be realistic or attainable; do not set objective that cannot be achieved such as to get 3 billion views in one night. Your goals also need to be time bound; set a goal that is supposed to be achieved within a specific time period.
If you follow these simple guidelines then there is a high likelihood that you shall never be disappointed. For instructional purposes, let us consider an example of a company such as Globe Fastening Consultancy that may be looking into making a YouTube Video and the following will be the objectives.
1. Create an additional 2000visitors to the company website with 5 months of specific video marketing
2. Create an additional revenue stream of approximately $1,500 for every month within the first 6 months of the video marketing campaign
3. Double the overall number of clients within the first six months of video marketing.
Identifying your Target Audience The rapid shift of consumer behavior to the various online platforms has meant that has become more important for you to identify the right target audiences for your marketing campaign. There is however an upside to this shift as it has become easier for you to gain knowledge about your potential client base. To add to the basic information such as their demographics and locations, it is possible to get a better understanding of the types of sites they have a preference for, the content that they are interested in, and much more. Clearly defining this target audience for your market can aid you in custom fitting content such as social media posts, photos, paid adverts, and videos. It can also help you in identifying the marketing methods that would have the most positive impact to your business.
Targeting the right audience is certainly beneficial in ensuring that you get the most out of your marketing dollars. In identifying the right target audience, you need to look into the 5 Ws: Who, What, When, Where and Why. Who Who are the current customers? It is important to know who constitutes your current customer base. Given that they have already purchased from you in the past, you can make use of this information to get a better insight that will aid you in identifying the constitution of your core target audience. Here you can reach out to them via social media, email, or even within the store using a simple survey that will gather information concerning their interests, demographics, and their needs,. You can also capitalize on this opportunity to find out what the customers love most about your business and the products that they like the most. Who do you want to purchase your products? You also need to identify the audiences that you intend to target in order to aid you in the expansion of your customer base. However, it is vital that you are realistic in considering who will actually purchase your products. For instance, if the current customer base of your high end boutique shop is majorly comprised of college students and teens that are fashion conscious, then it would be realistic to consider expanding your customer base to young professional women. However, it would be far-fetched to consider moms that are budget conscious. Who are you currently marketing to?
If the focus of your targeted online marketing is a specific demographic that you are interested in then ensure that you keep track of the results in order to see the performance of your efforts. For example, you may begin by tracking phone calls just to get an insight as to how well your marketing is doing. If you get a positive result, continue to focus on these groups. If however they are not working consider solutions to these problems and tweak your message as well as strategy. Another positive that may come from monitoring your results is that you may reveal an audience that you had not been exclusively targeting. For instance, if your search advertising is resulting in more conversations over the phone than via desktop, then you may need to consider your mobile presence by designing an optimized mobile landing site in order to create a smart mobile experience for your mobile customers. What What is the background of your customers? This is arguably one of the most important questions that you should ask yourself when you are defining your target audience. If you are able to identify attributes such as age, gender, education level, hobbies, geographic location, income level, interests, family status, and much more then it will help you in determining the kind of online advertising that you need to make use of in order to reach the right customers for your business. What do they purchase?
Try to seek to know whether your customers purchase more of a certain item or are interested in one service. If you are able to identify the products that are your best sellers, you will in a better position to not only make smarter inventory choices but also in tailoring your message so as to reach as many customers who are interested in these items. Additionally, by closely monitoring review sites and social media, you can always keep abreast of what the customer’s think of your service; if it is good then you can maintain the standards and it is not then you get a chance to change. When When are your products bought? Try and identify whether your customers purchase your products at a specific time during the year or whether they are purchasing throughout the year. By understanding the seasonality or the frequency of your business, you can be able to create messages that will target the customers during the right time in the cycle. For instance, a plumber is often sought out whenever the need arises, therefore optimizing search ads and content for his plumbing services may be of help in targeting consumers that are looking for an on the spot purchasing decision. However, a customer that is looking to purchase a new car has a higher likelihood of researching on dealers, vehicles, reviews, and offers on a number of different sites for a stretched duration of time. Ergo, it is vital that you take the length of time of your normal buying cycle into account. When do the customers currently interact with your brand?
Ensuring that you target the right audience is not only crucial for gaining new sales but also for developing your online brand. For example, by monitoring the times when the fans interact with your posts on social media you can be in a better position of planning a schedule of when to post some content so as to get the optimum visibility as well as engagement. Here, let us imagine that your brand gets more traction on Fridays as compared to Mondays then you should take advantage of this knowledge to post content that is engaging or promotions and special offers for the followers and fans when they are most likely to see the content.
Where Where are your customers located? Defining the exact location of your current customers can be of significant help in terms of concentrating your target marketing efforts. By making use of geographic targeting in display and search advertising you can be able to create lead that are optimized through displaying your message only to audience that are in your service area. For instance, if you are a Dentist in your local town then there is a very low likelihood that you are going to receive a client from a different State or country through your adverts. Therefore, in order to target the right consumers for your products, you need to make use of the appropriate keywords, such as location-specific phases, within your content in order to improve the overall chance of them showing up when the customers such for businesses similar to yours in the directories or search engines. Where did your customers find you online? A very easy and effective way of identifying your target audience is in finding out where your customers presently first found out about your business. Whether it is from the local directories, search engines, social media, word of mouth, or online reviews, by knowing where they first found out about your business can aid you in planning where to concentrate your targeting efforts. Why Why do they purchase?
Ideally, a majority of the purchases can be grouped into two: needs and wants. By understanding your key products and services as well as the reasons why customers choose to purchase them can offer you with further insight into your target audience and the process they go through in finding your business. For example, a customer that is seeking the services of a plumber will have considerably different expectations as well as a journey compared to another customer that is looking for a spa. Ergo, in understanding the why behind the purchase, you are in a better position of determining the most probable path of purchase. Why do customers purchase from your competitors? With the highly competitive markets today, customers are often spoiled for choice when it comes to purchasing. Therefore, there are numerous reasons as to why customers may opt to buy their goods from your competitors. It may be the case that your competitors have a superior customer service, they are more engaging with their customers or their followers and fans online, offer appealing discounts, have a better reputation, or their content is better optimized such that the customers can find them easily when they search. Therefore, if you can clearly understand why they prefer to buy from your competitors and not from you may aid you in tailoring your approach in order for you to reach them and convert them to being your customers. Answering all these questions is quite crucial in identifying the target audience for your customers. Studies have shown that the average consumers will make use of more than 10 sources of information before they make a decision on purchasing a product. This makes it even more critical that you need to identify your target audience in order to build a marketing plan that is able to reach your desired target audience where they are most likely to see it and engage with it.