Earlier this month, the folks at Pixability released a detailed study titled The Top 100 Global Brands: Key Lessons for Success on YouTube. The report takes an in-depth look at the way many of the world’s most successful organizations use video marketing to increase their brand presence, drive traffic and engage new and existing audiences.
Now when I say top global brands, that’s exactly what I mean. The report features a host of big names like Disney, Samsung, Nike – heck even Google (which acquired YouTube back in 2006) is included. While most companies can’t match the marketing clout of these elite players, the study provides plenty of key takeaways for businesses of all sizes.
Here are 10 video marketing lessons from the big boys to consider.
#1. Marketing is more important than production.
As the report states, while the top brands collectively invest billions (that’s billions with a “b”) in online video creation, that doesn’t always translate to huge results. It seems more than half of the videos produced by these organizations receive less than 1,000 views on YouTube.
Why? As Pixability points out, it’s because brands still tend to focus too much on video production, and not enough on video marketing. This is the most important lesson to me, since it shows that your videos don’t have to be (as the study describes) “prime-time quality” to be successful. It’s the message and how you promote and deliver it to your audiences that really matters.
#2. Video content on YouTube has a long shelf life.
For top brands, the average YouTube video earns about 60% of its views three weeks after being published to the Web. This is in stark contrast to most content posted and promoted via social media, which tends to fade from the public eye in less than a day’s time. Naturally, there’s more to video marketing than YouTube, but as one of the top three most popular websites on the planet, publishing there can certainly help add more value to your content over time.
Quick Tip: 4 Best Practices for Posting to YouTube
#3. Without a channel, you’re not really marketing on YouTube.
Of the top 100 global brands, only one – yes one – doesn’t have its own dedicated YouTube channel. In fact, most of the largest organizations have several (just below 14 a piece, on average). Chances are that your typical B2B won’t need to segment its audience/content to such a degree, but having at least one branded YouTube channel is critical to increasing exposure for your company and its video content on YouTube.
#4. More video content leads to more views.
This seems pretty obvious, doesn’t it? According to the report, the world’s top brands average about 78 videos per month, with media companies shelling out nearly 500 in that time. That, of course, is a lot of content, and most companies in no way need to aspire to keep up with that pace.
The lesson here is that committing to video marketing is critical to success. This doesn’t mean you need to start throwing up a bunch of shoddy videos several time per week in an effort to boost your view total – that type of strategy won’t help anyone. What it does mean is that the best brands have trained themselves to “be a well-oiled, consistent, video content machine.” By finding new ways to create more purposeful content and maintain an active channel, any organization can increase the impact of its message with video.
#5. When it comes to video, SEO still matters.
Good optimization is important for all online content, and video is no exception. The biggest brands do a good job of making video SEO a top priority, enabling them to take advantage of the unique presence YouTube content holds with Google and its own video search engine. This involves doing appropriate keyword research and integrating those phrases into compelling titles, descriptions and tags. In fact, the report states that the top-performing brands use more than twice the number of tags for YouTube content as others near the bottom of the list.
#6. Not all videos need to go viral.
Sure, everyone wants to create a video that takes the Internet by storm and gets the whole world talking. But placing too much emphasis on creating the next great viral video can distract brands from developing other video content that aligns more closely with its overall message and advances the sales conversation with its target audience.
As the study explains, organizations are better off producing “good content that ranges from brand awareness to customer testimonial to how-to instructions to customer service.” None of this content will be a prime candidate to go viral, but they still represent valuable assets for video marketing and sales enablement that should not be overlooked.
#7. Video marketing content can be time-sensitive.
With all the talk about long-term search value and extending the reach of your brand, it’s easy to overlook videos that tend to have a shorter shelf life. Don’t! Top brands do a good job of aligning their video marketing strategies with other brand campaigns, including offline initiatives like events.
For B2Bs, this could include time-sensitive video content like webinar invites and conference promotions. While the value of these videos may be short-lived, they can still serve as powerful tools for generating buzz and boosting registrations for upcoming events and campaigns.
#8. Branding is critical to video marketing success.
The report notes that “top performing companies consistently brand their videos in both the video content itself as well as the meta data.” The takeaway here is that even for non-promotional content, it’s important to have your company brand front and center (after all, this is still all about marketing).
Since videos can be shared and embedded all over the place, it’s always a good idea to brand your videos in a way that makes it clear where the content comes from. This can be as simple as including a small watermark of your company logo in the bottom corner of the screen. It also makes sense at times to include simple calls to action in your videos (often at the end) encouraging viewers to learn more about your business, view another piece of content, and more.
#9. Video is a boon for social media engagement.
The study also found that when leading brands integrate YouTube with social channels like Facebook, Twitter and so on, they increase audience engagement up to 330 times. (In this case, audience engagement refers to things like shares, “Likes”, comments, etc.) It also notes that the organizations generating the most views of their video content also earn the most social media shares.
So as you can see, online video works very well with social media marketing. While most organizations already have some sort of social strategy in place, it’s easy to forget that YouTube is in many ways a social media platform itself. By generating more video content to share via its various social channels, companies can improve their social media results in a way that leads to increased traffic and a more engaged audience base.
#10. Video makes complex messages easier to deliver.
Finally, with all the talk about the popularity of online video and the value of YouTube, it’s important to remember that on its own, video is an extremely effective format for communication. Of the top 100 global brands, technology companies are among the most active in video marketing. As the report explains, these industries recognize that “video is a perfect medium to introduce and explain complex products and services to their prospective audiences.”
As I’ve written many times before, people tend to retain information at a higher rate when they can see and hear it, so video is an ideal platform for getting messages across more effectively. For example, a video product demo can be more powerful than screenshots, while a video customer testimonial can carry more weight than a written success story.
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For more details on how the top 100 global brands use video marketing, be sure to download the full Pixability report. You can also visit our Marketing topic page to learn how Brainshark solutions help organizations get more value out of their video marketing strategies.