April 8, 2012

8 Tactics on How to Launch a YouTube video

Sometimes we create campaigns supported by media. The media is aimed to drive traffic to whatever campaigns we have. In the case of using YouTube, an iPhone app or some kind of other product that is full of content that we assume will be consumed by the end user. However, in most cases, all of these media formats need to be launched in order to reach the end user. Ie. in every campaign, you need to launch the launch mechanism.

It sounds odd, but it really is the case now that the web is completely overhauled by content. Much of which is vastly more creative than that of what any agency could ever create. What the agency can do however, which a normal user does not think about, is to launch its content in a way which makes it pop up on the surface in a better way than other content.

This blog post is aimed at describing how to launch a YouTube video:

1. Publish it on Facebook

When publishing a video to Facebook you really need to try and engage your users more than if, let’s say, you were launching a photo. A video requires a “play” action and the content needs to be consumed over time. This is thus a higher threshold than a photo, considering the photo can be consumed instantaneously. Building a page with video content is thus a less recommendable method than with text and image publications.

1 a. Time for Posting YouTube videos to Facebook

Pick your timing – although you get more engagement at around 3 am on a photo, you will do a lot better publishing the video at night. Remember that people are at work or in school during the day and not able to watch a video the way they are able to react to a photo. Videos are typical evening content where the user is in front of their computer or able to play it out loud on their cellphone.

1 b. Increase visibility by tricking EdgeRank

You will fight EdgeRank as you will not get as many likes and comments on a video as on other posts. They watch it instead of like it. Thus you need to seriously think about what call to action you are inducing in the video. Both as the bottom third of the video display (something which I will explain in another post) as well as in the end frame. Remember to put a call to action to share or like the video in the end frames of it. Something such as “Like our page” or a question about the content of the video such as “What happened after 30 seconds – comment on our Facebook page post”.

1 c. Always ask for feedback on your Facebook page

Publish it and ask the user to give you feedback on something that happens 15 seconds into the video. Or ask them to tell you at what time a specific event happens in the video.

1 d. Explaining what the user should do with your YouTube video

In the comment you write with your video, you can write a 1. 2. 3. explaining how you want your user to interact with the content. It is always a good idea to write out EXACTLY what it is you want them to do. On each page you have the followers who will do whatever you tell them to, but they will not do it UNLESS you tell them too. This is extremely important to remember.

1 e. Posting a link back from YouTube to Facebook post

In the comments section of the YouTube-video, post a link back to your post on Facebook so that users can navigate to where they should be commenting easily. This will boost the EdgeRank of the story and thus it will become more visible on the Facebook platform.

2. Seed it to bloggers

Some people are talking about seeding as the case when they make their video viral. This is absolutely not the case. Seeding shall be seen as a media purchase to support the launch of your YouTube videos. What it really is all about is paying people to embed your video content in their website. Often, seeding companies target bloggers in their own network and put the video on autoplay, sometimes beneath the fold so that it starts playing with the visitor not even aware that there is a video on the page. I say – do not pay these companies – it is MUCH cheaper to build up an organization for this yourself.

2 a. Comment – don’t e-mail your YouTube video

When seeding a video to a blogger, do not send them an e-mail. Make it a comment on their blog that links back to your video. An e-mail takes as much time to write but you will not get the link value to your video if the e-mail lead to no result. Some people turn against this recommendation and want you to contact them via e-mail instead. My general experience however is that those people will not be satisfied whatever you do. If your goal is to boost a video, then you simply apologize and move on if you get complaints. Time is to valuable to you. One thing you should keep in mind though is that you should only post comments relevant to the content of that post. Google is pretty good at sorting relevance and although YouTube hasn’t caught up just yet, I am sure they will move in that direction as they are owned by Google. Thus, you do not want your work only have temporary effect and shall thus spend serious time sourcing before you start publishing your comments.

2 b. Motivation to the blogger

When you seed your video you already need some views which I talk about in the next section. As you usually have no relationship with these bloggers, you need to make them think that they are publishing something popular, or something that will become popular. Remember that their goal is to produce quality content for their users. All you should do is to motivate why this is relevant content. For the most part, large scale video seeding doesn’t leave you with the time to motivate individually, but the effect of it is vastly greater and thus it should be considered.

2 c. Don’t forget the keyword research

Before you start seeding, do your keyword research and URL collection so that it can be re-used in the future. If you already have a send list of engaged users then this is perfect. If you don’t have one, then you should start to collect one. Remember to treasure your seeders like the gold in your vault. Send them an update of the progress of the video and thank them many times. Please also write them an e-mail or two between the times you need help with seeding. If their engagement isn’t treated with respect they will leave you faster than a rabbit says “fuck”.

3. Buy views

There are a series of services online that sell you YouTube-views. Most of them have targeted views for country and other demographics. Some say that this is cheating, but it is nothing else than buying media as far as I am concerned. Large video seeding companies use these types of services regularly in order to boost view count before they seed the video to bloggers.

4. Forum posting

Some marketeers seem to have forgotten the power of the forum. There are several available software out there that can automatically create accounts for you on bbPress and several other such forum types based on keyword. You can thus define what kind of forums you want to create accounts on, then you can hit a button, go have a cup of coffee and then come back with registered accounts to start posting through. Don’t make the mistake that you only post a topic about your video, rather publish the video link as your profile link (most forums allow you to push a link in your profile), then start “bump”-ing popular threads written by others.

4 a. Creating your profile link back to YouTube

Ok. I will take that more slowly. In your forum profile. Copy and paste your link to the YouTube video you want to launch. Next to it write something that will induce people to click. If it doesn’t work the first time, then change the copy. Do not write “This is really AMAZING – Link”, rather use a call to action such as “This is what I do – Link”.

4 b. Bump-ing popular topics

The next step is to start “bump”-ing. The word “bump” is a term that belongs to the forum world. It means that you want to follow the thread, but you have nothing important to say at the moment. By writing bump you will get updates whenever something happens within the forum thread. This is totally acceptable and you have a higher rate of success if you do this kind of bumping than if you write generic comments such as “This is a really awkward discussion.. LOL..” which is regularly recognized as SPAM.

4 c. Making it count – the good profile

You should try to cover your profile by giving it a thorough profile description as well as finding a good profile image. Make sure the profile image you use is also used – if possible – somewhere on the video page.

5. YouTube commenting

YouTube commenting works. It is just that it takes a shit load of time. I would recommend you do this the first 15 minutes in the day for two weeks in order to build some traction to your video. Then you should stop. I haven’t tried any tool that does this without wasting too many good proxies too fast.

5 a. Stay updated with YouTube RSS

Remember to pull an RSS for the most current videos in the category you are posting in. Let’s say you are posting your video within Education. Then pull an RRS feed from the latest and most popular or fastest growing videos within that category. Then use that feed to stay updated on new videos. Go to each and every new video that is posted and write a comment. If you are able to be outrageous in your comment this is better. Some assignments doesn’t allow you to as you are building YouTube accounts for larger companies, however, if you can you shall. Otherwise make it kind of generic.

5 b. Publish link back to your YouTube video

Simple enough. Remember to publish the link leading back to your YouTube video

5 c. Thumb up your comment

Plus your comments to the top. Rarely any comments get thumbs up if the video doesn’t get a shit load of comments and commentators. In order to stick your comment to the top of the video page, you shall have 4-5 people who react to it as soon as you have posted it. If they click thumbs up on it, it will get stuck above the fold before the rest of the comments regardless if it was published previous to those other accounts. Over time, setup a network of people who thumb up each others videos. Then you might have to thumb up 5 videos per day, but in return have something like 100 thumbs at your disposal when you really need them.

6. YouTube Video responses

Video responses are a bit more tricky than commenting. YouTube has blocked you to only publish video responses to a certain set of videos. Sometimes they remove your video as a response if they don’t find it relevant enough. Thus when posting a video reply, make sure you only do it where it is highly relevant.

In a more thorough post I describe how to make video responses on YouTube here.

 7. Publishing update to your subscribers

If you have the luxury of having subscribers that have already signed up to your channel, then go ahead and publish an update to them at this point. I have described how to do this in a previous tutorial that you can find under the YouTube marketing section of this blog.

7 a. Increase your number of YouTube-subscribers

If you haven’t got any subscribers yet, there is one way that beats them all in order to build more and that is to subscribe to other peoples channels. I know… nothing sexy here… like me and I like you back :).

8. And all the other things important before you launch your YouTube video

8 a. YouTube video name

Remember to name you YouTube video correctly – PLEASE use the word Video in the title. If you want to appear in Google searches for video related searches, people use the word video, please use it in both your title and description.

8 b. Choosing your category

Remember to put your video in a category that is less popular than the one you want it to end up in later. You can always change this later on. If you want it to show up at all in the toplists without having a million views, then pelase don’t put it in the entertainment category.

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