This year, YouTube celebrated its 10th anniversary. They did this in their own style. They looked back at their decade journey, and one of the things they did was to do a survey of how brand content was faring on the giant site. A list of the top 100 brands, based on "Interbrand 2014 Best Global Ranking" was made. Pixability analyzed the brands and gave a report of what had changed for those brands in their YouTube marketing strategy over the years. People also voted for their favorite brands via partnership with The Webby Awards.
Some of the observations include:
- Doubled YouTube viewing in the last year, 2014
- The top 100 brands had a total of 40 billion views on YouTube
- 18 billion views are from the previous year
- Top brands regularly publish new content
- Thursday is the most popular day to post content. The other days include Tuesdays and Wednesdays
- The brands upload a new video on YouTube every 18.5 minutes, collectively
Before we delve into the marketing strategies to learn from these top brands, it is important to note that views on YouTube are not created equally. This is because some are created via paid media. Organic views also tend to generate higher engagement and sharing. Nonetheless, there is still something that marketers can learn from these YouTube ads. Here are the top 10 strategies marketers can include in their YouTube marketing strategy:
1. OriginalityGive your viewers a taste of the brand’s persona using a unique selling point and value proposition. Some of the ways to do this is by asking questions like what your brand does for the regular person, how you can show it in their natural environment, what your product does that other products do not, and even how you can show this in a fun experiment with the real world. Originality also has to do with doing what you are good at, that is, becoming an expert in your niche or attaching your brand to a particular style.
2. EngagementYour viewers want to engage with content. This gives them to do something beyond watching the video. Aim at making your video simple. Users are more likely to engage with plainly simple and beautiful videos. You need to also do trend jacking, capitalizing on an existing trend, you need to do it in a subtle way that stands out.
3. CollaborationA successful marketing strategy involves collaboration with independent YouTubers. This helps in reaching a wider audience and engaging them. Some of the most successful YouTube creators are experts in their field. They are therefore genuine influencers when it comes to their fans. Since they get feedback from their audience, they know how to package their content, including the right tone to use, which makes them succeed in their video marketing.
4. StoriesTell a story that viewers will want to watch. A successful marketing strategy needs to identify the zeitgeist, the spirit of times that your brand can identify with. This way, you will begin a trend before others join the bandwagon. It is also good to use what you have. If you have kittens and kids, and you can use them to package your story in a unique way that can make your video go viral, then go ahead and utilize this resource.
5. FilmIn video marketing, it is important to think like a filmmaker when you are creating videos for your YouTube channel. This way you will be able to create videos with a cinematic feel. A crucial aspect to this is the titles that will you choose. Your titles should arouse curiosity. This way more people will be ready to click on the video or ad and watch it. Include relevant keywords. The title length should be 50 characters or less. This allows for a greater reach and better optimization. To find out if a potential keyword will rank well on search engines, Google it. If there are no videos on the first page, you may want to opt for another keyword.
6. PranksPranks need to be part of your marketing strategy, as viewers like to watch positive and harmless pranks. People like to see others get fooled. However, it must be in a good nature.
7. MemesMemes can be used as amusing video themes. You can use memes from the internet, for instance, from T-Mobile. You can also make your own memes. A brand that successfully applied this YouTube marketing strategy is Pepsi, with their version of the “Harlem Shake”
8. Tent-pole eventsIn video marketing, you can create ads around big events, for instance the Oscars, Super Bowl, and World cup. You however need to upload them early on YouTube. For instance, about 7 million hours of ads and teasers were watched from Super bowl within 6 weeks, early this year. The ads should go on even after the event is over, like Adidas did with the World Cup campaign.
9. DiversityThe top brands are very diverse when it comes to ad formats. You may choose unskippable ads in which you communicate within 5 seconds. However, this may not engage the users, as they can’t wait for the ad to be over.
10. Celebrity creditWhile ads like Volvo’s Epic Split had an overwhelming number of viewers, since they used Jean-Claude Van Damme to showcase the precision and directional stability of Volvo’s Dynamic steering, analytics show that this ad resulted in more searches for Van Damme than for Volvo trucks, something that the YouTube marketing strategy did not factor in.
Despite Van Damme getting more searches, you need to use the best brand ambassadors. Give your viewers what they want, and do it well. This will make viewers like your brand.