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Getting the Most Out of YouTube

Last week, we went over some tips and tricks for Twitter. This week, we’re going to go over how to get the most out of YouTube.

YouTube is the third most popular site in the world, and appeals to almost everyone, making it an optimal place to share your knowledge with the people looking for it. As we covered in this blog, YouTube can work for almost anyone willing to give the site a chance. There’s definitely a niche for you!

However, there are ten key things you need to keep in mind to make the most out of the experience. Here are some tips:

  1. Use a unique name. Many people come up with something generic, like RetirementGuy101, which just gets lost in the crowd. Make sure to use your name, or your business name (which will help you build your Google results, as an added bonus). This makes you seem more official.
  2. Add a cover photo. While YouTube cover photo requirements are larger than many sites (2560 x 1440), it is imperative that you have one. Many people simply leave this off, which leaves the strange, boring background on display. This does not make your company look established and trustworthy. Getting the dimensions and layout right can be tricky on YouTube, but they do provide a handy guide here.
  3. Include an "About" description. Create a short, concise description of you or your company. Make sure to describe the ideals, qualifications, and bragging points that make you unique. You are trying to convince new people to pick you over the competition, after all. And, since this is social media, making sure to keep it short to keep viewers engaged. Around 245 characters is a good limit.
  4. Embed them on your site. You already have a built-in audience on your website, so make sure to embed them there. If you don’t already have one, it would be a great idea to create a media page for your site! You should also prominently feature a link to your YouTube channel (and other social networking sites!) near the top of your site.
  5. Link back to your site. Not only can you include a link in your description, but you can add an annotation over your video that gives the URL of your site, and then links directly to the page. It’s also a great idea to have a call-to-action annotation at the end where you give people a special incentive to visit your site. Offering them a free report or free chapter from your Best-Selling book (that links to where they can sign up to get it) are great options!
  6. Take advantage of the title and description. You never want to leave one of these blank! Not only will a descriptive, catchy title encourage people to click on your video, but it’s a great place to mention your name/business name and give your search engine rankings a boost.
  7. Don’t forget tags! I cannot stress this enough. Tags are how new people will find your videos on YouTube. If you leave them off, you’re missing so many perfect opportunities! For instance, if you’re a financial planner, tagging common terms like "retirement", "retirement planning", and "Retirement 101" will help those planning their retirement find you. YouTube can also be good about suggesting common tags, so make sure you take a look at what they suggest when making your choices.
  8. Notify your followers that you have a channel. If you have an email list or other social networking accounts (including Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Pinterest), make sure to let them know you have a channel once it’s live! A quick announcement is a good way to start, and then I’d recommend promoting all new videos through your email and social media sites.
  9. Announce new videos to your subscribers. When you are uploading a new video, there’s an option under "Basic Info" to "Post to your subscribers". You should always do this! You never want to count on your subscribers to come back and find your videos, especially if you post sporadically. Which brings me to my next point …
  10. Post regularly! I would try to commit to at least one video a month, or your subscribers will get bored and forget about you. If you can do one a week, that’s even better! In addition to keeping your current clients interested, this will help you gain new followers. After all, if you’re searching for videos on "retirement", are you going to go with the person with one video under that term? Or are you going to click on a video from someone who seems to consistently put out reliable content? Exactly! And don’t forget to like other videos, comment, and subscribe to other channels. This also makes your channel seem more active and reliable.

Now that you know the ten key tips to help make your YouTube channel a success, what are you waiting for? You can get started on creating your channel today! If you still have questions, don’t hesitate to contact me any time!

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