With both its long term discoverability and potential to educate your clients, the YouTube platform offers powerful benefits for B2B companies. And yet, in Toronto, YouTube is one of the most frequently overlooked social media platforms when it comes to B2B marketing.
Yes, YouTube is no longer the only social media platform for posting video (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter all offer video), however on these other platforms, organic views are all based on “feeds” which means that for a short period of time after the video is posted, it will be shown in the feed of some percentage of your followers, depending on factors such as the Facebook algorithm or whether a user accessed their account during the window of time a video might have appeared. This feed-based video distribution strategy can be successful for gaining lots of “Day One” views (organic or free viewership) and well-targeted paid campaigns can also be quite effective in the feeds.
But social video is not only about feeds, and for B2B video marketing success in Toronto, this distinction is key. B2B companies in usually have higher-ticket items and longer sales cycles than with B2C. During this longer cycle, potential clients in Toronto will research their future suppliers as much as they can and in multiple ways. Usually, they will turn to Google and YouTube for their research and end up watching many videos about the products these suppliers offer. And while on Facebook almost all views from a given week will be of your latest video, on YouTube almost all of your views from a given week will be of your best videos from the past.
Instead of being a feed-based social network, traffic on YouTube essentially comes from what is called, the four S’s: Sharing, Suggesting, Searching, and Subscribing. Potential B2B clients in Toronto usually find YouTube videos about your products because of one or more of the following factors:
Sharing: They were directed to your videos via a direct link from the an associate, the media, a salesperson directly, or a friend.
Suggesting: They saw one of your videos in the “suggested videos” column on the right-hand side of the page (while watching a different video).
Searching: They came across your videos by searching on YouTube or Google.
Subscribing: They subscribe to channels based on their interests and those channels talked about your products.
With the four S’s in mind, here are some simple ways to optimize Youtube marketing for your B2B business… Encourage Video Sharing
Get B2B bloggers and influencers to post links to your YouTube videos. Bloggers and influencers particularly like to post announcement videos and interviews (under four minutes) that feature Toronto industry success stories. A video is a great complement to press releases, and short how-to videos on your products can encourage bloggers and influencers to share your videos with their audiences.
Remember to also embed your youtube videos into your own website, blogs, eblasts, and newsletters. Encourage your existing audience and subscribers to like and share your videos and watch your audience and profits grow
Boost Views of Your Videos With Optimized Thumbnails
After sharing, most YouTube views tend to come as a result of your video being related to other videos. And one of the most important ways to get your videos in the “suggested videos” section of Youtube is to have proper custom thumbnails. the best thumbnails include very tight close-ups of faces, usually looking directly at the camera. Using photos of people who are speaking, eyes and teeth visible, expressive face, speaking mid-sentence, are very effective. Viewers wonder what he/she is saying, so they click to find out.
Your thumbnails can also benefit from a “branding stripe” running the full height of the left-hand side of the image. This is key because it makes them stand out in the suggested videos column. Remember, most people see these images very small (at just 120×68 pixels, to be exact), so the image has to stand out to attract attention.
Additionally, playlists are essential to driving suggested videos. This is because YouTube looks to playlists to understand which videos are related. There’s practically no limit to how many playlists you can create, and a single video can be in many different playlists. Playlists take almost no time to create, and encourage continuous viewing as well. A good playlist strategy is essential in any YouTube marketing campaign.
Youtube Search: Contrary to popular belief, videos are not ranked in YouTube search by how many views they get. Rather, the algorithm looks for how long the videos encourage people to stay on the YouTube.com platform. So to succeed, B2B marketers must pay close attention to key metrics, such as how long people are watching individual videos and which videos are referring additional views back to the same channel. you’ll benefit by using YouTube analytics to take stock of what’s working and what isn’t, and use those learnings to structure the video content more appropriately for the YouTube audience.
Google Search: Often a YouTube video will come up in your Google search results. Optimized titles, tags, and description all help make this possible. Google can only index video by text and code. So for SEO purposes, the metadata around the Youtube video is actually more important than what is shown within the video itself. Doing an optional closed-caption transcript will also help Google better identify the content. These transcripts help both Google and YouTube search engines to index the video content better.
In Youtube, subscribers are very important to gaining targeted views. An organic video can expect, on average, about 15% views per subscriber (without other influences). So a channel with 1,000 subscribers can generally expect about 150 views per video.
Thus it’s important to encourage your potential client base to subscribe to your YouTube channel in every way you encourage them to follow you on other social media platforms – via your website, email, etc. And, importantly, get them to subscribe via clickable links in your videos and descriptions. Then, each time they find themselves on YouTube.com, they will be more likely to have your videos automatically promoted to them. They may also receive email updates from YouTube as well. each subscriber you get will give you an advantage over your competitors.
YouTube is really a hybrid platform. With its high sharability, it’s more like Facebook or Twitter. But with its long-term discoverability, its ability for driving B2B leads in Toronto can be more like a content-marketing blog. This is because once a video is indexed in a search engine, it will stay there. The video can then become a primary traffic driver to other content pieces or as a top lead conversion source. The possibilities with the Youtube platform for B2B companies in Toronto are really endless. All the more reason for Toronto companies to invest in video production content on a regular basis and in properly utilizing the Youtube platform.