YouTube Marketing: Ignore it at Your Peril

business-woman-using-a-computer

Today, brands have an opportunity to improve their customer engagement strategies by tapping into the full power of YouTube and YouTube marketing.  If you haven’t been paying close attention to YouTube, you’ll be surprised at how much it has evolved into a critical component of many leading brands’ marketing and advertising strategies.

YouTube is the second-largest search engine on earth, after the leviathan that is Google.  In fact, more and more people are going straight to a video search to find a variety of information ranging from products to “how-to” learning to seminars.

This new approach for consumer information discovery represents a seismic shift in the way businesses and marketers now need to approach reaching and engaging customers and prospective buyers. And video content is at the heart of it all.

Savvy digital marketers recognize the critical need for content to be easily discovered in search engines, or risk losing customers to their competition. Many marketers may not realize search engine algorithms also index, rank and serve viewers with video content. In fact, video content offers a potent formula for improving organic search rankings. Here’s a quote from a recent Pixability study: ‘Video content has been measured as 53X more likely to achieve organic, first-page ranking than traditional web pages.’

As a result, all the major brands now have a YouTube footprint, and it’s equally important for any business. Simply having a YouTube presence isn’t enough, however. One gaping issue jumps out:

‘Over 50% of the videos produced by the Top 100 Global Brands have less than 1,000 views.’

Marketers need a smart and strategic approach to gain maximum value from their video content.

The power of video marketing

Many brand marketers fail to reach their target audiences because they’re focusing more on video production than video marketing. Of course the former is crucial, as the likes of Tubifi  have proved, but by ignoring the latter, marketers are missing out on valuable opportunities to improve customer engagement, lead generation, and conversion.

Savvy B2B and B2C marketers recognize the unique value video offers to communicate with existing customers and prospective buyers.  YouTube channels provide brands with a great way to organize video content by target audience, product and service offerings.

Everyone instinctively knows that video is ideal for delivering news, entertainment, education, training, explainer product videos and post-sale support. It’s the combination of images, words and music that make video the richest and most potent form of communication. Video engages audiences in ways that text-based content cannot.

If you don’t have a YouTube channel, it’s equivalent to not having a Facebook or LinkedIn Company page. You’re missing out on the opportunity to engage prospective buyers across all touchpoints to build your brand authority and sales pipeline.

So what can a B2B or B2C brand marketer do to improve targeting, reaching and engaging prospective buyers on YouTube?

Get started with YouTube Marketing

As part of your content marketing strategy you’ll want to include a video strategy as a central element of your visual story telling. You need to create a video content strategy that is consistent with your overall brand marketing positioning, however, to maximize its power.

6 Initial Steps

  1. Identify your company’s business goals and objectives.
  2. Create your marketing plan and ensure it supports the business goals.
  3. Define your content marketing strategy, including a video strategy, to focus on delivering quality brand-aligned content that is designed to provide value to existing customers and prospective buyers.
  4. Know your target audience and the digital channels they spend time on
  5. Ensure your video content strategy aligns closely with your marketing plans
  6. Plan to engage buyers along their path-to-purchase by delivering the right message to the right buyer in the right channel.

Consistency

You cannot underestimate the importance of delivering a consistent flow of content, including video content, to engage prospective buyers along their path-to-purchase.

Remember that a YouTube channel represents your company’s brand and image. By consistently posting fresh, original video content to your YouTube channel, you’re providing an incentive for viewers to frequently visit your YouTube channel. But it’s equally critical to optimize user discovery of your video.

OK, video is great, but isn’t it very expensive?

Thanks to advances in technology, there are new approaches that make on-line video content affordable and easy-to-use, such as Tubifi’s online video production platform. These advances help reduce your cost whether you have in-house talent, wish to engage producers and other video professionals to make videos for you, or need to supplement your in-house talent with additional skills.

How to optimize your SEO

Video is a powerful way to motivate prospective buyers to discover your content. But remember that SEO is critical to enable prospective buyers to, you know, actually find your videos. It’s important to  avoid the mistake of assuming that the same SEO rules used for text content apply to video: in fact, new rules apply.

Video SEO calls for attention to relevant keywords in your video title, metadata, tagging and description to ensure prospective buyers are able to easily find your video using search engines including YouTube.

There are more avenues than ever that can help you to build a coherent and widespread message that will drive consumers to your site, build brand authority, and increase leads to build your business.

As part of an integrated, multi-channel marketing plan you’ll want to promote your video content on the social web including, YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, to deliver your brand message.

‘Tighter video integration between YouTube and a brand’s website results in a higher return on video investment and encourages stronger performance within Google SEO rankings.’

Today, brands have an opportunity to improve their customer engagement strategies by correctly using YouTube.  Traditional marketing approaches are no longer as effective as they use to be, however, by the modern marketer is increasingly able to reach a targeted audience by ensuring that YouTube is a strong component of their marketing and advertising strategies.

Learn how Tubifi can revolutionize your video content strategy. Contact us for a free demonstration today.








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Tubifi 2013. The story thus far.

Since we began, we’ve done innumerable videos for a diverse range of clients. Everything from start-ups to established software companies and pretty much everything in-between. In the process, we’ve learned a number of lessons about video ad creation.

The creative people who’ve done the work are equally widespread. Granted many are from the States, but we’ve received bids from around the globe.

This is what we’ve learnt:

1. Creative people are very fond of getting new business.

Granted not a searing insight, but true nonetheless. They also love working on a platform that allows them to seamlessly experiment with a mix of images, music and graphics, all from one browser.

2. Creative people relish the challenge that video provides.

It’s the most complex form of communication, but also the most rewarding. All of which may explain why we get so many responses from our ever-growing network of video professionals

3. Businesses love choice and seemingly the more the merrier.

One particular client got over 20 proposals from production houses and they were happy to go through each one in great detail. When they finally selected one, they were content that no stone had been left unturned.

4. Creative folk like making money and clients love saving money.

Again very obvious, but it’s not often that businesses can access top global talent at a price that is within most budgets.

5. Clients value creative input.

With Tubifi’s intuitive platform, it’s very possible for businesses to do a video on their own. We’re very happy if they do. But, as a rule, they realize that creativity and craft are crucial elements in making a video impactful.

6. Video is becoming a must-have for businesses.

With more and more content being consumed online and on cell phones, video has become the perfect vehicle for companies to convey their message. Whether it’s to enhance their brand, launch a new service, get more customers or retain existing ones, there’s nothing more powerful than the combination of moving images, music, graphics and voice.









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Coming soon to a small screen near you

Everyone, from the largest advertising agencies to the smartest trend spotters, all agree on one thing at least.

More and more content will be viewed on mobile or cell phones, i.e. the small screen. It’s happening already and will only increase.
 
For a start (and at the risk of stating the obvious) a cell phone is a very personal item, aimed not at a demographic, but at one person.
 
This has serious consequences for how content is produced. Clearly one cannot personalize a video using traditional shooting methods. Costs would be astronomical.
 
Happily, there is a solution called Tubifi. 
 
Simply put, the Tubifi platform integrates a cloud-based editor, with multiple libraries of stock video and audio. To best utilize this content, there are thousands of creative professionals registered on our platform.
 
This enables video to be done quickly, cheaply and well. So far so good. But when it comes to cell phones, the premise becomes even more powerful.
 
Because we use found images and audio, rather than shooting from scratch, it’s relatively simple to make that video personal, rather than generic.
 
By using technology to aid the creative production process, it’s now possible to use a laser, not a scattergun, to reach an individual.
 
There’s a brand new phobia in the world called nomophobia — the fear of losing or being without your cell phone.
 
The vast majority would rather lose their wallets and many panic if their phone is not always at hand.
 
Given the burgeoning importance of cell phones and the increasing inevitability of them usurping TV screen or computers, surely it makes sense to find a smart way of producing content for them?
 
Well, now there is. Check out www.tubifi.com and see just what can be done when you marry technology to creativity.









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If your business needs to make a video, help is at hand. Literally.

As I write there are 1,200 (sorry, make that 1,220) creative people on the Tubifi platform.
 
That number is growing so rapidly for a simple reason. They’re all looking for business — your business.
 
So as a marketer, you now have hundreds of editors, videographers, graphics experts, copywriters, voice over artists, all ready and willing to display their considerable talents for your benefit.
 
This represents good news all round.
 
Businesses need high quality video to break through the ear-shattering noise that’s out there. And with so many creatives willing to pitch for that business, the result is quality communication, done quickly and to a budget.
 
The key words are ‘quality’ and ‘budget’. You can doubtless get work done for less. But it may well be reflected in the quality. Or lack thereof.
Tubifi’s network exists to create videos that have an impact on the audience not your wallet.
 
The old-fashioned notion that quality video has to come at a bloated price is just that – old-fashioned.
 
Tubifi represents a happy marriage of creativity and technology. The latter enables business video work to be done more quickly so that costs are kept down. It also allows quality to shine through.
 
With access to so many superb video and audio libraries, the ever-growing Tubifi network can produce work that reflects well on your brand without dealing a body blow to your budget.
 
For example of our work go to http://www.tubifi.com/portfolio/
 
You’ll soon see exactly what we mean.









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This is the opposite of a diet commercial. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

A few years back, you couldn’t be in business without a toll-free number. A few years after, you just had to have a website. These days, to stay competitive, it’s video you need.

Just check out the statistics. (I can’t remember the numbers and I’m too lazy to look them up, but they make a watertight case).

All of which begs the following question. If video is a must-have for business, where’s the best place to go?

In fairness you have several choices. You can go to an agency that will doubtless craft a very good video. Problem is, they will charge you handsomely for the privilege.

Or you can go online to one of the many companies offering inexpensive video templates Problem is, they tend to look like templates.

So what’s a business person to do?

There is an alternative. It’s called Tubifi.

Create your video: Here’s how it works.

You put your brief out to our network of creative professionals. (We now have well over a thousand including editors, graphics, writers, animators, and videographers. You name it, we have it)

We at Tubifi send your brief out to those with the requisite skills and they come back with solutions to your brief.

Now here’s the good bit. Your business has spent nothing so far. Zero, zip, nada. And you have many options from which to choose, so you’ve left no stone unturned.

Now here’s the even better bit. Because the Tubifi platform integrates an editor, with multiple libraries of stock video and audio, you very often get an actual video to judge. Granted it’s in lo-res, but hey, it’s better than trying to decipher stick figure drawings.

When you’ve decided on a particular route, Tubifi will arrange a call with you and the creatives in question so that your video can be refined.

The result is a business video that looks like it was made by an agency, but with one very big difference. The small price.

So go on, visit www.tubifi.com, check out our work, and put your brief to our network. You’ve got everything to gain.

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Winning a creative pitch: How to shorten the odds.

Cameramen film a rehearsal for the Eurovision Song Contest in Moscow

If life’s a lottery, then creative pitches aren’t far behind.

But don’t despair. There are quite a few things you can do to even up the odds for your creative pitch.

Advertising is nothing more or less than solving a business problem in an engaging, memorable way. Easier said than done, alas.

But there is logic to the process. (And also a bit of magic)

1. Define the problem your prospective client needs to solve.  (This is often the hard part. But be disciplined. You can’t solve more than one problem at a time, so pick the most crucial.)

2. Once you’ve done that, write a short sentence to explain the core idea that solves this problem. That way your client can understand your intentions before they read your script. Equally it will help your submission be more easily remembered.

3. The truth about a product or service is more powerful than empty claims. By expressing the benefits honestly, you’re more likely to be persuasive.

4. Now for the fuzzy, arty, magical bit. Figure out what tone of voice you wish to convey, what kind of images will best suit the message, and what music is right. Should the pace of editing be fast or slow?  Should the mood be restful or upbeat?

This requires experimentation. Luckily Tubifi provides you with all the tools to make trying different things as easy as possible. We have integrated search across major video and audio libraries. So you can choose from Getty, Pond5, Wavebreak, all of whom have wonderful video clips, many of which will suit your needs. Then there are any number of audio tracks from which to choose. You’ll instinctively know when something feels right. So go ahead, play around, mix and match, try different combinations.

5. Do a video draft rather than a script. This is probably the most important way to turn the odds in your favor. It costs you nothing, except a bit of time, and will be more powerful than words on a page or still pictures in a storyboard. With Tubifi’s editing platform and integrated video, image and audio search, this is easier than it’s ever been before. It’s possible to do a rough video draft in under an hour if your idea is solid.

6. Use a professional voice to read your copy. (Unless of course you’re a superb voice artist yourself). Again this helps more than you realize. On the Tubifi platform you’ll see Voice 123. With over 100,000 artists, they will have the voice you need to convey your message.

7. Use SmartSound. This very clever piece of hi-tech wizardry automatically ‘cuts’ the music to the right length, giving you a natural intro, middle and ending. It also saves tons of time.

By doing all the above, your creative idea will stand out to the client. Of course, as in life, there are no guarantees, but it doesn’t hurt to shorten the odds.

8. Good luck (though now you don’t need quite as much)

Don’t already have a Tubifi account? Sign up today for free!

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High quality business video + low price = happy client

It’s quite a recipe.

Take Tubifi’s cloud-based video editing platform.

Add millions of integrated stock video clips (not to mention many more still images) from the leading libraries, like Getty, Pond 5 and Wavebreak.

Throw in great audio from Universal’s Killer Tracks, Pond 5, and SmartSound. Sprinkle with hundreds of thousand of voice artists from Voice 123.

Then mix in a rapidly growing creative professional network on the Tubifi platform all ready to pitch for your business.

The result is business video done better, faster and more affordably than you ever imagined.

Clients, unsurprisingly, love the results.

After all, it’s a risk free way to evaluate several creative proposals and ensure that your business gets the video it deserves.

So if you’re thinking of making a video (and let’s face it, pretty much everyone is) put your brief out to our creative network.

Click on the testimonial below and hear from a man who knows what he talking about. After all, his last four videos were all done by Tubifi. And he seems pretty happy.

Testimonial: Tubifi business video production

“If you want to get the best value for your marketing dollar, I would work with Tubifi.”
— Mike Conti, Clients First

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There’s a world of creative talent out there just waiting to pitch for your business. What are you waiting for?

video creation

As I write there are well over 800 creative professionals on the Tubifi network. Those numbers are growing daily.

There are writers, producers, motion graphics experts, editors, voice over artists (in short everything you need to make a video) all very keen to pitch for your business.

Even if you have a fairly limited budget, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the number (and quality) or proposals you’ll get back.

And that’s the real beauty if you’re thinking of doing a video. Without taking any risk or spending any money, a business can assess a variety of creative ideas before making an informed decision. (Welcome to client heaven).

The Tubifi video creation difference: See a rough draft first

Perhaps even more impressive is that many of our Creative Professional use the Tubifi editing platform to present video drafts to clients. So rather than trying to imagine what a script will be like on film, clients are seeing a rough video draft, complete with stock footage, music and a voice over.

As you can imagine, this makes selecting the right idea infinitely easier.

No longer does a client have to take a leap of faith, hoping that the end result will do justice to the script.

So whether your business is contemplating a video, or has an immediate need for an entire campaign, there’s a new, risk-free way to get a world of talent contributing a wealth of video creation ideas for your consideration.

Getting your business brief out to our network is simple enough. We have a template that prompts you to fill out the pertinent information. We then send it out to the network and those interested in participating are given all the chance to compete.

All of which begs the initial question. What are you waiting for?

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Tubifi Puts Free Video Production Suite In the Cloud

Michael Goodwin of Yahoo! Small Business Advisor recently made a video about his new book on the Tubifi platform and wrote up his experiences as well as an interview with me. Some highlights from my point of view:

…Enter Tubifi, a cloud-based DIY video editing suite that may enable a whole new New Wave of its own. It even comes with a built-in social network for creative talent, and direct access to thousands of stock video clips, photos and music.

Oh, did I mention that it’s free?…

…A fully functional free video production suite aimed at ad agencies, marketers, and PR companies, Tubifi provides seamless, searchable access to a huge collection of stock video, images and music to make your videos explode from the screen. Tubifi provides a great way for small businesses to create their own promotional videos, deploy impactful video marketing and advertising, or hire it done with help from some industry friends. A Tubifi Professional account is absolutely free except for the cost of stock footage you buy. You get up to 100 gigabytes of free storage, and unlimited use of the online video editor.

A-and… Action!…

[In between there's an interview with me. That's not a highlight from my point of view, although you might find it interesting. Use the link below. --mh]

…Businesses need video more than ever. Video is essential for being seen on mobile devices, being shared across social media, engaging web site visitors and email recipients, and advertising online. Tubifi says it’s committed to making it easy to craft quality videos in the cloud. But there’s one thing they don’t mention. It’s fun!

As part of the research for this business profile, I took a few hours one afternoon to build a small video on Tubifi promoting my book, Heaven Before I Die—A Journey to the Heart of New Orleans (ebook version). It was much easier than my previous attempt with Final Cut, and (I must admit) huge fun as well. It was almost impossible to tear myself away from my “research” and back to writing. My Inner Filmmaker may need to take further advantage of this exciting new resource in the cloud.

And apparently I’m not the only one.

Read the full article at Yahoo! Small Business Advisor.

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Why have a scratch voiceover track when you can get a VO that’s up to scratch?

All too often we see beautifully put-together videos, along with music, and then, horror of horrors, we hear a voice that’s at best amateur.

Not to insult anyone, but this voice is usually the writer or the editor. In short whoever has the ‘best’ voice, gets the short straw.

This is understandable. While most of us can speak pretty well, doing a VO (voiceover) is a very specific skill, best left to the professionals. (A microphone can be as scary as a camera).

In addition to the hundreds of wonderful VO artists already on Tubifi (filter by the voiceover skill and browse their audition reels to find voices you think might work, and contact the VOs through the platform), thousands of voice pros are at your disposal through a wonderful on-line service called Voice 123. There you will find a voice that will make your script take flight.

They have men and women of all ages with any accent you desire. Simply send off your script for auditions and pick the one that best suits your needs.

It will make all the difference to the overall video and greatly increase your chances of the client saying that magic word – ‘yes’.

(Hint: Use the Voice123 Smart*Cast workflow, and ask the VO artists to give you a full read of your script. Readings are free. When you pick a VO from the tens of submissions you will get back, you can add it to your draft composition’s Voiceover track. When your client approves the draft and the voice, you can ask the VO artist to give you a final read while watching your video, if necessary. Once the client pays you, pay for the VO you used.)

The Tubifi platform, combined with Voice123, gives you everything you need to make your video as good as it can possibly be.

There are millions of royalty free clips from the world’s leading libraries, wonderful audio tracks, graphics packages and, of course, superb voices.

You’ll need them all to make your video compelling. And since the script carries the message, use a professional to deliver it.

So remember; scratch that scratch track.

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