Develop A YouTube Strategy For Your Small Business

Are you an entrepreneur or perhaps aspire to be one? Want to make sure that you are ticking off all the boxes to build your brand and promote it online? In the world of digital marketing, YouTube is a channel you can’t afford to miss out on.

So in this blog, we’re going to be looking at how you can harness the complete potential of YouTube to promote your brand. And we’ll also give you some tips on developing a YouTube strategy for your brand.

How can you use YouTube as an entrepreneur? 

According to MerchDope, 30 million users visit YouTube daily. When YouTube first came onto the scene it was simply used for casual video blogs that were mostly homemade. But today after 15 years, the platform hosts many high quality professional videos. It’s also a powerful branding tool, whether you are an individual or a small business. YouTube’s benefits include:

  • Increasing the visibility of your brand when customers look for it in search engines.
  • Helping you attract and retain customers
  • Enhancing the relevance of your brand 
  • Allowing you to interact with your customers in a more personable manner as compared to other social media platforms.
  • Helping you reach a wider audience demographic and in turn maximizes your marketing and advertising efforts.

Getting Started With YouTube

There’s actually more than one way for you to get started. And experimentation with these different tactics plays a big part in helping you grow your audience.

Content That You Can Share:

  • You can create a YouTube channel and post your videos about your products and services as well as features that you roll out.
  • You can share announcements about products and your business events. 
  • You can upload testimonials from satisfied customers.
  • And regardless of the type of content, make sure it’s consistent with your brand style guide.

Tactics To Help You Grow Your Audience:

  • Collaborate with trending YouTubers to publish sponsored video content about your products and services on their channels so that you gain more exposure. 
  • If there are other small businesses in the same niche as you, you can actually comment, like and subscribe to their channels as part of maintaining goodwill. 
  • Engage with those who comment on your posts. This will improve the trust that they have with your brand. 
  • Ask customers to subscribe to your channel so that they can stay updated with your content.

Ways You Can Generate Additional Revenue:

  • You can monetize your videos to help generate additional income. Monetization, in general, means that you will be embedding ads for other businesses in your videos. 
  • You can also place ads for your business on the videos of trending YouTubers so that you drive more traffic to your website.

What are the best practices for setting up a branded YouTube channel? 

Now you have an idea of how YouTube can be used for your branding. So let’s take a look at the best practices for setting up a branded channel as part of your YouTube strategy.

Branding Your Channel

First off, let’s talk about branding your YouTube channel. On YouTube you can use channel art like the banner and the icon image to help create a sense of familiarity with your brand. You can also update these from time to time to reflect changes in seasons, upcoming holidays that are relevant to your brand, or to reflect changes to your service or product. 

To make the most of the ideas above you’ll need to make sure your channel artwork is sized appropriately. The icon might seem more straightforward as a square image. But your channel banner is especially important to consider, as you need to design it for layouts that vary (desktop and mobile). Be sure to familiarize yourself with the size and file guidelines

Another important thing about the channel banner is that you can add links to up to 5 social media sites on it. For more details on this, and how to customize and manage your channel check out YouTube’s guidelines.  

When it comes to your YouTube channel description, that’s your “About” page. You want it to be clear and descriptive so that your potential audience knows what to expect from your brand. You’ll also want to include keywords as YouTube’s algorithm places a lot of importance on them. A call-to-action is also important here. Ask viewers to like, comment, and/or subscribe. If you have more than one call-to-action you’d like to include, go to town! Just make sure that you provide some context for each. 

Need some inspiration for good branding on YouTube? Check out these ideas

Coming Up With Your YouTube Strategy

Creating a strong first impression is very important. But your second, third, and additional impressions shouldn’t be forgotten either. It’s important to consider how you are going to keep your content engaging on an ongoing basis. 

If you want users to actually like, comment, or subscribe you need to make sure that you make an impression that leaves them wanting more. For example, the Lego channel uses UGC to keep their users engaged. 

Verify Your Account

Verifying your account allows you to tap into great features. And these features will help you with achieving more consistency on your page. They include:

  • Uploading videos that are longer than 15 minutes. 
  • Adding custom thumbnails.
  • Live streaming
  • Appealing content ID claims. 

For more details on how to verify your account check out this overview. You’ll find some more details in the video below: 

Make SEO A Part Of Your YouTube Strategy

Since YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine right now the SEO tactics that you use can generate a huge ROI. Having good and relevant keywords as well as up to date information in your YouTube channel description is just the start.  

Make sure that your keywords include your services, words that describe your brand and your industry. To decide on which keywords to use you can try tools like Google Trends and Keyword Planner. You can also add similar keywords to your channel tags so that it helps to populate your channel on Google as well as on YouTube search. For more ideas on how to write searchable descriptions check out YouTube’s Creator Academy resources.

Another way you can customize your channel and factor in SEO is to have a custom URL. Now, there are some criteria that you have to meet (e.g. having at least 100 subscribers). But that won’t be too hard to manage once you’re up and running. 

You’ll also want to include featured channels. These will appear on the right hand side of your channel’s home. And they serve a dual purpose. When you include featured channels your viewers will associate you with them. There will also be a connection formed in the YouTube algorithm between your channel and your featured channels.

A Few More Tips For Optimization

Below you’ll find a few more optimization strategies from Track Maven that you’ll want to factor into your YouTube strategy: 

  • Make sure that your content is published consistently. It helps to grow your audience. 
  • Use good tagging as well as multiple channels so that you have better visibility. 
  • Find the peak viewership times for your audience and post during those times. 
  • YouTube says that videos ranging from 16 seconds to 2 minutes get the highest number of views – so aim to keep your videos within that time frame!
  • Use multi-lingual captions. This will help you reach out to, and connect with a broader audience. 
  • Many users will browse on mobile, so make sure that your videos are optimized for mobile viewing.

What kind of ad campaigns can you run on YouTube? 

On YouTube, ads really make the world go around. Let’s take a quick look at some of the ad campaigns that you can run on YouTube.

YouTube Bumper Ads

Bumper ads run for 6 seconds and are unskippable. They play before a YouTube video starts. And since they are short, they are ideal for generating reach as well as brand awareness.

Non-Skippable In-Stream Ads

These ads are non-skippable and they play before, after or during a video. They have a run-time of 15 – 20 seconds and give you more time to deliver your message. These ads can be great for brand awareness and reach.

TrueView Ads
These are by far, the most popular especially because advertisers will only pay when viewers actually engage with the ad posted. These can be classified into 2 types:

  • TrueView in-stream ads – play before or during a video and can be skipped after 5 seconds. Payment is required only if somebody watches a minimum of 30 seconds. 
  • TrueView video discovery – viewers see your video ad with other YouTube videos and you only pay if a user clicks on it and watches it. 

The trick is to make viewers not skip out on watching the entire ad. If you want to know how to avoid that, here are some strategies that you can use. 
Sometimes, it is easier to watch examples of ad campaigns that have worked well. It gives you a clearer perspective of what they did right and might even give you that little inspirational nudge. This blog from brandwatch will help you get a few ideas.

Time To Get YouTubing

So, all ready to set up your YouTube channel? You don’t have to have your YouTube strategy fully figured out from the start. Just commit to learning through trial and error. In time you’ll find that it gets easier to keep yourself updated with tips, tricks and trends, to create high quality content. It’s a very competitive marketing world out there but businesses are definitely cashing in on their efforts on YouTube. And we hope this read gave you a few building blocks to get started. Happy YouTubing!