Video is becoming the dominant medium for viewing, interacting, and engaging online. While Snapchat and Facebook are both rising quickly as video platforms, YouTube has maintained its position as the biggest hub for online videos. In fact, YouTube is now serving a billion hours of content per day. The challenge for brands looking to take advantage of video online is to develop a strategy to carve out a space among the fierce and growing competition.
Where do you start?
Starting any new channel on a particular platform, let alone a YouTube channel can be pretty overwhelming.
But it doesn’t have to be!
From a brand strategy perspective, the first thing you will want to do is think strategically about the channel, why it should exist, and what purpose it is serving to its subscribers and viewers alike.
Let’s start with the basics
Choose and Develop Your Brand Identity
Focusing on a particular topic, be it fashion, beauty, technology, lifestyle, business, marketing, or gaming, make it clear to your audience. This will allow you to focus on a particular area and build a fan base around that particular topic. Need help clarifying your brand? Book a Brand Strategy Roadmap session.
Follow Your Passion
When you begin any project, it’s incredibly important that you are excited about not only the medium (writing, podcasting, or in this case, video) but also about the topics that you are going to be developing content for. Without that passion, it can get extremely tough to keep going when it doesn’t feel like progress is being made.
Video Thumbnails are Key
YouTube, like all other platforms are built to compete for a viewer’s attention. Video Thumbnails entice a viewer to click on a video, save a video for later, or even subscribe right away. To increase views, use bright backgrounds or closeups of your face showing strong emotion to grab attention.
Show Off with a Great Channel Logo
While your brand logo or personal photo are the first things you may think of to use as your channel logo, take a step back and think about where the channel logo will appear across the platform and on social media. It may be that your YouTube channel is themed around a particular niche and a sub-brand should be developed specifically for that channel.
It’s a first impression – make it count!
Create Artwork for your Banner that Pops
When you get visitors to your YouTube page, be it on mobile or desktop, you want to develop a consistent look and feel. Your brand should feel consistent. Because of this, you want to create artwork for your banner that pops and grabs attention.
Tie it All Together with a Compelling Channel Page
When a viewer or subscriber gets interested in your channel and brand, they are more likely to hang around and browse your page. This is where you need to think about your larger brand strategy and how your YouTube channel fits into it. Organize your videos into playlists, tie back to your main website, platform, or ecommerce, and make it feel as though it is an extension of your overall brand.
There are few things that lead to mistrust of a brand or individual when consistency is broken. I’ll talk about that more coming up.
Add Contact Info & Connect to Your Website
Your YouTube channel should have a clearly defined purpose and objectives that it is working to achieve daily. Be sure to include your contact info and connect back to your website in video descriptions and possibly the channel description.
Make your YouTube videos into an army of exciting, entertaining content designed to turn viewers into subscribers and eventually into customers (site members, clients, etc.).
Develop Recurring Segements
When you first think of video, you may think of long-form content. When I first thought about video online, I was thinking in terms of tv show length. The truth is, as you very well know, attention spans rarely last that long with highly produced television shows, let alone online video.
Instead, think about the segments around topics you want to produce. These can be 3-5 minutes in length. Then, develop content topics for each one. Now, take it a step further and designate a particular day and time for each segment type.
Develop a Consistent Publishing Schedule – And Stick to it!
When you do this, you eliminate the guesswork and build a consistent publishing schedule all at the same time! Consistency builds trust, and will go a long ways towards building an audience that cares about your message.
Here’s an example of what a segmented content schedule might look like:
Beyond the basics, Mike Barrett of VloggingGuides put together an incredibly insightful infographic to help you build out your video content strategy.
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