Social Media Mayhem: Youtube 101

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This week in our social media series, we will be covering Youtube and the benefits of using this platform to attract users to your organization. Youtube is a unique social media platform that thrives off of creators who craft and upload original content to entertain audiences. Much like cable television, subscribers keep up with individuals in a dedicated way; think of subscribers’ loyalty to specific Youtube channels as the online equivalent of keeping up with a favorite reality show or sitcom. This user trend - of regular and deliberate engagement - makes an organization's presence different than on other social media networks such as Twitter and Facebook. To break this down, we will use the same approach as in our past blog posts from our Social Media Mayhem series: analyzing the audience, advertising opportunities, and how to engage with users.

Audience: As mentioned earlier, Youtube can be compared to cable, providing users with endless amounts of ‘shows’ to watch each day. Viewers spend, on average, 40 minutes a day watching Youtube. In fact, Youtube reaches more 18 to 49-year-olds than any cable network in the United States. Youtube currently has 1.5 billion users, which is the second largest social media network, following Facebook. To put this quantity into perspective, 1.5 billion users is roughly 1/3rd of Internet users.

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The range of users includes:

  • 62% Male/ 38% Female
  • 11% ages 18-24
  • 23% ages 25-34
  • 26% ages 35-44
  • 16% ages 45-54
  • 8% ages 50-64
  • 3% ages 65+

As you can see from the breakdown above, the majority of Youtube users are males ages 25-66. This statistic, however, can be misleading as there are different viewers for each channel on Youtube. For instance, Adelaine Morin is a 20-year-old Youtuber who creates beauty-tip videos and therefore she attracts mostly young females to watching her videos. With that being said, there is hope to find your target market on Youtube by just looking at specific categories of videos. Categories include beauty, fashion, comedy, music, animals, gaming, and many more.

Advertisement Opportunities: Advertising on Youtube is relatively simple as this channel is owned by Google, so it operates as an extension of Google Adwords. The first step involves creating your own channel and a video that will be shown for future advertisements. This video should be brand-related and include a call to action that will allow viewers to explore more of your content. To properly utilize your video campaign, we recommend that you send the viewer to your website or Youtube channel to see additional products or videos about your organization.

After you have created your video, it is important to analyze who you would like to see it. Google Adwords offers a selection of location, demographics, and interests that you can choose from. By selecting the proper audience, you can reach the group of individuals that will respond best to your product. Google Adwords then does the brain work of finding the selected audience and adding your advertisement with a related video.

The final step is setting your budget. Your organization is only charged when the viewer watches 30 seconds or more of your ad or engages with it by clicking the call-to-action overlay, card, or companion banner. Youtube states that on average an organization spends roughly $10 per day for local campaigns, which would be a good starting point if you are new.

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Beyond just a video advertisement, there are other ways to get involved on Youtube. Sponsorships are an interesting way to get in contact with creators. If you know that a specific creator has your target market watching, it might be worthwhile to sponsor them directly. When doing so, the Youtuber must declare that the video is a paid product placement/endorsement, but that has little effect on the viewer. This method allows your product to be viewed in collaboration with the Youtuber, which can increase awareness of your brand.

Engagement: Interacting with your audience on Youtube is different than on any other social media platforms (Twitter or Facebook) because involvement on Youtube should be geared towards entertaining your viewer and capturing an audience's attention. Viewers come to Youtube to keep up with their favorite creator, musician, or even animal. After you have created your channel and videos relevant to your brand, it is important to organize your videos. To do this, you can make playlists for similar videos. For example, Nike has a set of playlists for each campaign they have (Nike Campus, Nike Training, and Nike Breakthrough Stories are an example). This allows viewers to continue watching a category of videos that interest them the most.

Another way to engage with viewers watching your videos is through cards. A card is shown on the right-hand side of your video and invites viewers to explore more about your brand by clicking onto the connected link. This could be a link to your channel, another video, or a home website.

Similar to Facebook and Twitter, it is critical for an organization to react to Youtube comments. Youtube viewers are able to leave comments underneath each video and can even have conversations with others regarding what they have watched. For your organization, it is important to look through and monitor responses to gain instant feedback and gauge the interest your brand is creating.

If you’re looking for a team of professionals who can help your brand create a top-notch YouTube campaign, we’re here for you. We offer digital ad campaign services and social media expertise.