According to a recent study, nearly 8 out of 10 marketers rank YouTube as the most effective marketing platform. 62% of businesses are already using it for marketing purposes. However, not all companies using YouTube as a marketing channel are achieving results.
It s not enough to just create videos that you find interesting, upload them and wait for clicks to start. You need to know all the best practices for YouTube publishing to keep your account in good standing, stay in touch with your target audience, and deliver results.
In this article, we ll take a closer look at specific YouTube publishing best practices that will help you get the most out of this platform.
1. Study copyright law
All brands must be fully aware of what copyright law covers. Not only can it protect you, but it can also warn against accidental use of what you cannot use.
When you use social media (especially as a brand!), You agree to their terms that you do not use any content that you do not own or have permission to use. They can easily check it.
Make sure you are not infringing copyright. Content owners can use YouTube s own tool called Content ID to find other videos with their content, including audio tracks.
YouTube can completely remove audio or video. If your account has enough copyright infringement issues, your account may be blocked.
Here s what you need to know to avoid copyright issues:
- Do not use audio, images or video clips that you do not own or do not have express permission to use. Just because you bought a song from iTunes doesn t mean you can use it in your branded video. To do this, you must acquire the right to commercial use.
- If you want to include music or stock photos in your videos, either find the “free for commercial use” options that sometimes come with such tools, or purchase commercial licenses for copyrighted content.
2. Always enter keywords in the video text
YouTube is the second largest search engine on the Internet, second only to Google itself. So, you need to optimize every part of your video for a native search engine, as this can be an important part of helping customers find your content and discover your brand.
Include keywords in the title, video description, and ideally in the subtitles. Include different keyword variations in each location to maximize your search potential. For example, your title might include the keyword “best luggage,” and your description might include keywords such as “best suitcases” and “safe baggage check”.
You can use a tool like Keyword.io to determine which keywords are most used by your target audience. Be sure to use the dedicated YouTube search tool to see what people are looking for not only on Google but also on YouTube.
We wrote about how to write attention-grabbing descriptions for YouTube here.
3. Create closed captions for each video.
Closed captioning in your YouTube videos is essential for all brands. They make the video available primarily for deaf or hard of hearing users, but they also allow people to watch it silently if they so choose.
As the number of people browsing YouTube on mobile devices and sometimes in public places grows, subtitling is becoming an important opportunity for viewers.
While you can add subtitles to your videos in any video editor of your choice, we highly recommend adding them using an SRT file or YouTube s own subtitle feature. When you view a video uploaded to Creative Studio, you will see a “subtitle tab”. From here, you can create subtitles and closed captions for your video, aided by YouTube s automatic transcription features.
When you edit the subtitle of a video, you can choose which text will be displayed on the screen and when. You can also edit the auto-generated signatures. YouTube s auto-decryption features have improved significantly over the past few years, but some bugs are still popping up.
If you have a quiet speech or have an emphasis in general, editing these signatures will take a little longer.
The beauty of closed captioning is that users don’t need to turn them on in any way, but they are there for everyone who wants to see them.
4. Find out the best time to post
When you upload your video, you will see the option to schedule it to be published. This is usually handy, especially if you want some consistency on your channel, like releasing a video every Tuesday at noon.
While scheduling time isn t as important as it is on other platforms, choosing the right time to post to YouTube can still give your new videos an extra boost.
Sending messages on weekdays from noon to 4 pm is usually the best choice. This post time gives YouTube enough time to register your content and show the video to subscribers.
5. Carefully watch the comments for new videos.
You should always keep track of all your YouTube channel activity, so it s especially important to keep an eye on new videos shortly after they are posted.
There are several reasons for this:
- You may be promoting new videos on other platforms, including social media channels or your email, driving more traffic to them.
- This can help you quickly assess the overall mood of your new videos, adapt them, and respond to any potential problems.
- New videos will quickly show up to subscribers, which will also drive a lot of traffic to them.
- Monitoring comments allows you to respond to questions, concerns, or complaints. This ensures that you can quickly disable trolls, and help and interact with active users.
YouTube is an open source platform, so comments from one person can affect how others are perceived. Therefore, staying on top of your comments is an important task.
6. Always choose your own thumbnail sketch
Your video thumbnail is what users will see when they browse and decide what to watch next, including in search results, on your video feed, and in the Suggested Videos section that appears when you watch something. …
Thumbnails are important because they can grab the user s attention and significantly affect the number of clicks you get.
Always create your own thumbnail to capitalize on this, using text and a high quality image to showcase what your video is about. They will almost always look much better (and more professional) than YouTube s auto-generated thumbnail options.
When you upload your video, you will see the option to select a thumbnail. Upload a 1280 x 720 pixel thumbnail of your own production.
Some companies choose to create “branded” thumbnails that display brand icons and colors, as well as distinctive layouts for all of their videos. Using branded badges can help build brand awareness and increase video views on your channel in general. You can create a standard layout using third party design tools and simply change the background image and text.
YouTube is a platform that offers huge potential for businesses of all shapes and sizes (B2B and B2C), but you need to stick to best practices if you want to see these incredible results.
The techniques discussed above give each YouTube video you post the best chance of gaining user attention and improving performance while avoiding common mistakes that can lead to your campaigns failing before they even start.
When you combine these practices with a strong YouTube strategy, your channel is prepared to engage target audiences, build brand awareness, build leadership, and even drive sales.