YouTube Optimization Tips

YouTube logo

The popularity of online videos continues to increase. Videos are so popular that YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world.  And we’re seeing more and more links to YouTube videos in the search results.  If you have videos which promote your company, products and services, it makes sense to optimize them to be found both on YouTube searches and for searches on Google, Bing and Yahoo too.

Please check out our easy to read, short guide on how best to optimize your YouTube channel and videos to be found in the search results. 

Channel Optimization

  • The first few words of your channel description appear most often across the site so highlight your most important content upfront.
  • Precisely describe your channel.
  • Use relevant keywords in the description.
  • Add website and social media links to the “About” tab.
  • Check how your channel looks in search and related channels. Do your channel icon, channel name and channel art do a good job of describing your channel to potential fans?

Video Optimization

  • Make it captivating – this is your video’s headline. If it showed up in a search, would you actually click on it?
  • Offer keywords first, branding at the end.
  • Update video titles on a regular basis so they continue to grab views.

Tags are descriptive keywords that will help people find your videos. Create a set of standard tags for your channel that can be applied to any video you publish.

  • Include a mix of both general and specific tags.
  • Use enough tags to thoroughly and accurately describe the video.
  • Properly format tags to ensure accurate indexing of your video.
  • Include keywords from your title in your video’s tags.

Only the first few sentences of your description will appear in search results or above the fold on a watch page – so make them count! Follow a template for all of your video descriptions to create consistency.

A video description should:

  • Accurately describe your video in one or two concise sentences.
  • Include your website’s URL first as that is what users will see
  • Entice viewers to subscribe (and include a subscribe link).
  • Link to other episodes or related videos and playlists.
  • Include links to your social media presence as well.

 

Funding for New Social Media Ideas – So 2011?

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, the social media bubble is bursting.  From Wall Street trading to closed-doors corporate funding, investors have begun turning a cold shoulder to the inventors of tomorrow’s social sharing networks.

In fact, corporate investment in social media (in networks such as Facebook and Pinterest, the funding of apps, etc.), has steadily declined from its high point in late 2011.

According to Businessweek‘s Ashlee Vance: “Silicon Valley is reaching the saturation point with business plans that hinge on crossed fingers as much as anything else.”

“We are certainly in another bubble,” says Matthew Cowan, co-founder of the tech investment firm Bridgescale Partners. “And it’s being driven by social media and consumer-oriented applications.”

Is this the pending death of social media?  Read all the gory details here >>

To provide a bit of Upright analysis: 

The monetization of the actual social media platforms is obviously crucial here. When General Motors quit spending ad dollars on Facebook in May 2012, investors began to wonder: “if the all-powerful Facebook can’t make money (monetize features/ads)…who can?” Suddenly, many home-run new ideas appeared as a huge gamble.  Whereas from 2009-2011, the market was (naively?) friendly to social media investments.

As people are becoming increasingly “platform agnostic” (not loyal to any one social media site or service provider), investors are even more gun-shy about putting all their eggs in one basket. The truth is that social interactive concepts — such as watching videos, sharing photos, Do-It-Yourself project forums, etc. — will continue to be created and diversify. But the more we become addicted to these social/narcissistic interactions in our lives, the less we care who provides them.  Social media brands become generic utilities pretty quickly…or are bought out by Google. This creates an incredibly narrow path for long-term, independent success with any one social media network or app.

Investing in social media has become like investing in the next catchphrase or slang. I still like “radical”, though. It’s rad.

Social Media Explained with Donuts

What do social media and donuts have in common? Both are something one may enjoy at the start of the day. Both are available in a wide variety of types and flavors to suite a broad range of individual tastes. Recently, a North Carolina based marketing company tied these two subjects together in an interesting illustration that generated a great deal of interest, including some 100,000 likes on Facebook.

In the form of a chart handwritten on a whiteboard, the illustration provides a concise explanation of the various forms of social media, using a simple common thread. What makes this chart so great, beyond providing the opportunity to talk about donuts, is the simplicity with which it boils down a rather complex subject.  There is no denying the impact of social media, and that it is rapidly becoming one of the most important facets of marketing for a growing number of businesses. This fun and clever social media explanation makes its own case for this in the attention it has brought to the company. The important message here is that social media does not necessarily need to be a complicated endeavor.

If you are a marketer who is new to social media, you may feel overwhelmed in trying to gain a full understanding of how these platforms work. By looking at each platform through the perspective of “how can I use this to promote my [donut]?” you can identify a simple starting point. After gaining some experience and familiarity, you can take your campaigns to more complex levels. For example, as the owner of a small neighborhood café, you may start with a simple Facebook business page, and invite customers to “like” it. As your following grows, you may post coupons or menus.  The next step may be to offer patrons a free order of biscotti for “checking-in” when they visit. Eventually you can incorporate other special Facebook features such as sponsored stories to generate interest in your business.

Ready to bite into the world of social media, but find you’re in need of a little assistance? Consider Upright Communications the coffee to go with your donut. We’ll awaken you to the myriad of social media opportunities that are available, and we will help you supercharge your efforts!

 

Want to learn more about the social media mentioned? Check out the links below:

Twitter – “Twitter connects businesses to customers in real time—and businesses use Twitter to quickly share information with people interested in their products and services, gather real-time market intelligence and feedback, and build relationships with customers, partners and influencers. From brand lift to CRM to direct sales, Twitter offers businesses an easy way to reach an engaged audience.”

Facebook – “Facebook allows marketers to stay connected with people throughout their day whether they are on their computers or mobile devices, at home or at work, watching TV or shopping with friends. This allows businesses to create rich social experiences, build lasting relationships and amplify the most powerful type of marketing – word of mouth.”

Foursquare – “Foursquare makes the real world easier to use. We build tools that help you keep up with friends, discover what’s nearby, save money and unlock deals. Whether you’re setting off on a trip around the world, coordinating a night out with friends, or trying to pick out the best dish at your local restaurant, foursquare is the perfect companion.”

Instagram – “Snap a photo with your iPhone, choose a filter to transform the look and feel, send to Facebook, Twitter or Flickr – it’s all as easy as pie. It’s photo sharing, reinvented.

YouTube – “YouTube allows billions of people to discover, watch and share originally-created videos. YouTube provides a forum for people to connect, inform, and inspire others across the globe and acts as a distribution platform for original content creators and advertisers large and small.”

Linked in – “Influence consumer perceptions and purchase decisions by messaging followers across LinkedIn and the Internet. Post relevant updates, like company news, product promotions, videos, and industry articles. Amplify your brand message and benefit from follower engagement (likes, comments and shares), interactions that are virally distributed across a follower’s networks.”

Pinterest – “Pinterest is a virtual pinboard. Pinterest allows you to organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. You can browse pinboards created by other people to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and share their favorite recipes.”

Last FM – “Last.fm is a music recommendation service. You use Last.fm by signing up and downloading The Scrobbler, which helps you discover more music based on the songs you play.”

G+ – “Google+ makes connecting on the web more like connecting in the real world. Share your thoughts, links and photos with the right circles. Use easy, spontaneous video chat to strike up conversations with as many as nine people at once.”

Google Business Profiles to Become Un-Free?

Eyebrows are raised.

The sheer timing of recent changes to Google Places (reported here) and the introduction of Google+ (reported here) is suspect.  Google strips a considerable amount of information from Places profiles in the same month as they release Google+, which enables rich social interactions for users.  A coincidence?

Local Search experts are reading between the lines.  Previously, Google encouraged all business owners to edit information about their business for free, in order to provide consumers with details on the businesses nearby.  Will Google soon charge business owners for enhanced profiles, data-rich and infused with flashy features from Google+?  Will business owners pay for this?

Previous attempts from Google to encourage local business owners to advertise have NOT been wildly successful.  Products like Google Boost have come and gone, as business owners did not see the benefit of paying to display their hours and photos.  How better to force business owners into advertising, than requiring payment in order to create a business profile at all!

As we anticipate Google Business Profiles (an unreleased product), many theorize that Google Places will become the equivalent of a bare-bones Yellow Pages listing.  Meanwhile, paid Google Business Profiles would become big and colorful display ads with lots of interactive features.  There is certainly a demand for business owners to control information out there about their business.  That is really their right!  If data control becomes un-free, Google seeks to reap considerable rewards.  Stay tuned.

Friday Funk: Cincinnati is “Social”

For the second year in a row, hundreds of thousands gathered together to celebrate “Social Media Day”, on June 30th.  This event is a celebration of the technological advancements that allows for everyone to connect with real-time information and communicate with one another miles apart.

In honor of “Social Media Day”, Mashable, the leader in social media news and web culture reporting runs a global event where they ask web users why their city should be considered the most social place on the planet.

This year, thanks to Blair Ward, Cincinnati, OH (the home of Upright Communications) was chosen as the most social city on earth.

Take a moment to see why Cincinnati is just so social and so cool I might add!

#Cincinnati – The Most Social Savvy City in the World

 

Google+ (A New Social Platform)

Google+ is a new social platform which many see as Google’s answer to Facebook. There are several components to the free product, launching now and over the next several months:

1) CLICK TO SHARE The first feature (available now to all Google users) is the ability to “+1″ Google search results. Enable this feature, and you will see a +1 button to the right of each Google search result. It’s similar to ‘liking’ on Facebook– when you click the button, other participants in your Google social network will see what you +1 in their own search results. See screenshot:

Sign up for the ability to “+1″ specific Google search results, the new form of social sharing. (Log into your Google account first.)

2) HOOK +1 UP ON YOUR WEBSITE Most likely, Google will eventually factor the amount of +1s a webpage receives as a ranking factor. Currently, the amount of tweets and Facebook shares a page receives is a ranking factor; so this is the next logical step. According to your comfort level, we recommend you add the +1 sharing button to your webpages:

Add the +1 button to your website, to enable visitors to share your webpages and blog entries with their Google networks.

3) ADDITIONAL FEATURES Google has a whole world planned with Google+. For example: ten-person video sharing, management of Facebook-style social profiles, and easy mobile sharing. Currently, only a select few Google users have access to these features. Read one user’s experience of the new features.

Sign up to be notified when additional Google+ features are rolled out to the public.

More to come on Google+ in the coming weeks and months!

Friday Funk: Credit to Social Media

We frequently hear advertisers in various industries say, “social media is great, but it really doesn’t apply to my market.” The story of Xceed Financial Federal Credit Union, as reported at Credit Unions Online, might make those reluctant marketers reconsider. Rather than deciding that social media was not relevant for their business, they found a way to make their business applicable to social media.

Read More

Tuesday Tip: Top Ways to Clean Up Your Social Media Identity

The way you represent your brand on social media networks is as important as being on the most prominent channels. You may be on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube, but if you’re not managing how your brand is being represented, then why be on there. Upright has given you information on how to create the best profiles you can, but you now need to know how to manage it.

Follow these top ways to manage and clean up your social media identity for unwavering success:

Keep up the same persona on all channels. You want your followers to know who you are as a company. If your Facebook persona is inconsistent with your Twitter persona, how will they know who you really are? Social Media is all about allowing people to connect with the real brand. ** Remember to keep in mind that MySpace allows for more creativity than LinkedIn for example, so try to keep it consistent no matter what network you’re talking to.

Sign up for monitoring systems like Ping.fm where you can update your social media networks all at one time. It’s important that you notify all your channels of what your business has to say rather than just one. By doing that, you’ll never miss anyone when you’re sharing your newest products or offering out of this world deals.

Use the same name on every channel. The worst is when people look for you on one network but can’t find you on another because you have different names for your business. If you’re CupcakeChick on Facebook, then you need to be CupcakeChick on Twitter, YouTube, etc. Own your brand! Same goes for your screen name. If it’s Twitter.com/CupcakeChick, then you want it to be Facebook.com/CupcakeChick. Before you go creating a screen name on one account, check other accounts to make sure it’s available.

Don’t mix personal with business. It’s easy for us to associate our personal accounts with our business accounts. However, not everyone wants to know what you did this weekend or how cute your dog looks in that photo, so be sure not to mix the two. To avoid this issue, try cross-connecting your business social media accounts. Add your Twitter and Facebook links to your LinkedIn profile and vice versa. That way Google can see that those accounts are connected but not see your personal account in the mix.

Now, go on your merry way to cleaning and managing those accounts. It will be worth it!

 

Tuesday Tip: 5 Ways to Optimize Your NEW Facebook Page

So let’s say your company is new to Facebook and finally have gotten around to creating a Facebook page.  It’s now another way for you to expand your brand online and you want to represent yourself as the successful company that you are.  Not only that but you want your page to create business opportunities and encourage networking. We can definitely help you with that!  Below are 5 tips that we suggest when first starting out.

1: Select the Perfect Profile Picture

Choose the perfect profile picture that represents your business and make sure it follows the Facebook specs.

  • Photos should be 200 pixels wide.
  • In addition to having an image fit those specs, it’s really important to get the thumbnail size just right. You don’t want to pick a photo that is too big or else the automatic cropping of the photo done by Facebook will give you a no longer perfect profile picture.

 2: Create a Vanity URL

When first starting out with Facebook, it can sometimes be hard to get people to “like”  your page, especially if you’re a small business.  However, if you get the word out through email, flyers and on your website, you could get more than 25 fans in no time and be able to create a vanity URL.  A vanity URL is a way for you to easily share and advertise your Facebook page to your current customers and prospects, or anyone you want to show off to.

Once you get 25 fans, log in to Facebook, go your search bar in the browser and type in http://www.facebook.com/username.  It will take you through a series of steps and at the end, you’ve got your own vanity URL, check out Upright’s- http://www.facebook.com/walkupright

3: Add Useful, Basic Information

On Facebook, there is an area where you can add basic information about your company, such as website, year founded and a brief description about yourself.  Be sure to fill out ALL the fields Facebook offers that will be useful to your followers.  You want as much information listed as you can without making it cluttered.

Check out our basic information page.  Remember, depending on what type of company you are, you may have different options on what information you can share.

4: Develop a Posting Schedule

Work with your team members to decide how often you’re going to post an update to your Facebook page.  It could be just twice a week, depending upon how you want to use it, or it could be every other day.  If you post too often, you could lose fans, if you don’t post enough, people will forget about you.  Try to get a happy medium.

** Remember, not all of the information that you post should directly market your company.  They say 80% of business Facebook posts should be industry related information or something completely out of the realm of your business, like doing Tuesday Trivia and the other 20% should focus on the online marketing efforts of your company.

5: Pay Attention to Your Insights

Facebook offers a way for you to obtain information on how your page is performing. Facebook Insights shares with you important data that allows you to better your online marketing efforts.

You can track how many new fans you’re getting, how often they are interacting, what posts receive the most feedback, and which tabs people are viewing most often (it could be your Wall or Videos)

Below is a snippet from Upright’s Insight page:

There is ALWAYS more you can do to help better your Facebook page, but these tips should get you started.

Bing Business Portal

UPDATE: Are business listings you created in Bing Local missing when you log into the new Bing Business Portal?  We’ve noticed across several clients that business listings claimed before April 1 have not migrated into the Bing Business Portal.  Others have also noted this in Bing’s forums.  Bing recommends that you fill out this online form if previously-claimed locations are missing from the Bing Business Portal.

ORIGINAL POST: Microsoft, a multinational corporation, has released its newly upgraded version of Bing’s directory of local businesses, which allows users to update, claim and manage their business listings for free.

What was once called Bing Local Listing Center is now being referred to as Bing Business Portal Beta.  The platform is in beta, which means it’s still in the testing phase.

The portal allows for business owners to dress up their listings by adding their company logo, photos and basic information.  In addition, you can add store hours, parking availability, and types of payments accepted.  This might sound familiar because you could do this in past versions, but Bing Business Portal has added even more features:

  • Mobile Products (refer to first image below)- where you can add product descriptions to your profile page for mobile use
  • Specialties (refer to second image below) – where you scan decide a percentage portion of your business efforts
  • Facebook – enabling users to post information from the portal to their Facebook page
  • Coupons – the option to share your best deals with the public

…plus MORE!

Like other prominent search engines (i.e. Google and Yahoo), Bing has created this tool to assist businesses in obtaining professional relationships with those in their local areas, online.

We will keep you updated on any new changes the Beta version has in store for us!  We encourage you to explore your account, and if you don’t have one- it’s easy and free to sign up.