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Youtube Basics: A Checklist for Small Business

by Genevieve on September 7, 2011

in Social Media Marketing

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Youtube, it’s sort of a big deal.

It’s only the 3rd most visited website in the world. There’s more than 35 hours of video uploaded per minute. The site serves up 3 billion video views per day!

More and more businesses are taking advantage of Youtube’s existence and why not you used to have to pay for commercial time to get your videos in front of an audience. Today you can do it all from your home and by yourself is that not completely miraculous? Quit delaying this awesome opportunity for you business and jump in with both feet using our quick checklist.

We’re keeping it short and simple only hitting the most important parts of each step.

1: Create Your Account

Use your main email address, or at least the main email address used in conjunction with your company. Confirm the email confirmation immediately and jump right in.

2: Create Your Channel

Name your channel appropriately, your business name. There are no spaces allowed and you may need to make it something slightly different but users should still be able to clearly see the connection between your business name and channel name. Be careful though, once you’ve chosen a channel name you can’t change it. (Get on this Youtube?)

3: Customize Your Channel

Get this channel up to par. Upload a picture, your logo, location or any otherwise recognizable symbol, could be your face, who knows. Click on the Settings tab, you’ll notice you can change your Title, which is different than your channel name. Confused? Think of any webpage, it has a domain name and a page title. Add Channel Tags, these can get you huge traffic, so you may want to change your channel to NOT visible until you’ve uploaded a video or two. Don’t forget to hit the Save Changes button.

Flip over to the Themes and Colors tab, use the advanced options to adjust colors as necessary. Aim to make your channel feel as much like your website as possible. Match the content font if you can and get background colors as close as possible, or if you know how to grab color hexes (hint: there are browser plugins that make this a 5 second process) match them exactly. Again, save your changes.

4: Fill in Your Profile

You’ll find this in the left sidebar, click ‘edit’. Fill in everything you can but be certain to include the following: Name (if there’s no specific person then get creative and choose something witty), Style, Website, Channel Description (short and sweet), About, Location (pick your target audience’s Location) and Interests.

Feel free to remove any field you don’t fill in.

5: Create Your First Video

Whoa whoa whoa! Yep, we’re jumping right in. Make your first video, you might post a short video teaser introducing your channel. Make note that I said introducing your channel, not your business or product. You should be using Youtube on a regular basis, posting videos whenever it’s appropriate.

Don’t make a big deal out of this video, production value can be highly overrated but give yourself plenty of practice time. Making videos always feels silly at first and naturally we’re all self conscious of how we present ourselves. Keep starting over until you get the video right, or if you have editing capabilities make sure you have enough good material to cut and paste together. Be certain people will understand what’s going on in the video and what’s being said, use subtitles if necessary.

6: Upload Your Video

The Upload link is at the very top of your page at all times, presuming you’re logged in. From there it’s pretty straightforward, it can take a short while especially if you’re uploading high definition video. You’ll notice an AutoShare area on this Upload page and while you can connect accounts like Facebook and Twitter be sure to ask yourself if it’s the best way to handle sharing. There are more valuable ways to do so that perhaps we’ll explore in a future post.

You’re going to have to name your video which will become the title by which it is identified. The title is extremely important so be sure it’s as accurately descriptive of the video content as it can be. Or if you want to get slightly advanced, use the title to target a keyphrase that you know is already being searched for. Add a good video description and always, always add video tags because as we know, tags equals traffic.

Looking for even more ways to get traffic, try Derek Halpern’s video traffic academy webinar replay, you’ll find it’s chock full of traffic and lead generation tips.

7: Subscribe, Comment, Like, Share

Now that you’ve uploaded your video, congratulations, it’s like you’ve officially become a resident. You’re going to want to make habits out of the following four practices:

Subscribing – Subscribe to channels that relate to your business. Start with your allies, the other businesses you work with, the companies whose products you use and any quality channels you can find that your eventual subscribers might find interesting.

Commenting – Don’t go overboard but every now and then comment appropriately on a video you find interesting or thought provoking. This will get you traffic and exposure over time.

Liking – It’s easy, takes one second, do it when a video deserves it.

Sharing – People from other social networks will learn you have Youtube by you sharing videos, whether yours or others. Again, don’t go overboard but don’t be afraid to share something interesting either.

8: Create More Videos

Quite possibly the most important point on this list. Consistency is key. Choose a schedule, plan your content, make it easy and simple and then stick to it. It gets easier and better with time.

These are basic steps that I feel every business has to take to properly get started on Youtube. Youtube is still a huge and quite intricate platform and there’s a lot more you can learn and do using it.

About the Author

Genevieve

Genevieve Coates admits her obsession with technology and how it relates to business. She uses her gift for writing to help the average person use and understand technology. She also provides up-to-date technical product news, unbiased technology and mobile/wireless reviews, and tips for using technology and social media tools online. When this self-confessed tech-junkie isn't online, she's tending to her second passion - her massive garden at home.

 

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