YouTube Marketing

YouTube Marketing is the practice of promoting businesses and products on YouTube’s platform, by uploading valuable videos on a company’s YouTube channel or using YouTube ads.

If you’re looking to get into video marketing, there’s no better channel than YouTube. They’re the second most visited website on the entire internet, with over 2 billion users, have virtually no competitors, and consumers are increasingly spending more time watching more online videos.

With this flood of consumer attention, it’s no wonder companies are putting more of their ad dollars into digital video advertising.

The good news is you don’t need to flood thousands of dollars in YouTube advertising. If you create a good channel that constantly puts out quality content that people want, you’ll get the attention and eyeballs you need to drive customer acquisition through YouTube.

How to Create a YouTube Channel

So, you’ve decided to create a YouTube channel. Great! Now, you’ll need a YouTube Marketing strategy to help you identify goals, decide on video topics, and properly promote your brand on your new channel.

Before we dive in, it’s important to note that maintaining a YouTube channel takes a lot of time and planning. Are you ready for it?

Unlike other social networking platforms, YouTube exclusively hosts video content. You’ll need to set aside time to plan, film, edit, market, and analyze your content consistently. You’ll also need to define your brand’s goals and plan for how video can specifically help you achieve these. If you can devote an appropriate amount of time and energy to the platform, you’ll be able to create engaging, shareable content for your growing audience.

Creating a Google Account

Before you start filming video content, you’ll need to set up your YouTube channel. Because YouTube is owned by Google, when you sign up for a Gmail account, you automatically gain access to a YouTube account, a Google+ account, and much more.

Depending on your business, you may not want to tie your email to your business’s YouTube channel — especially if you need to share access to the account with team members or an agency partner. We suggest that you create a common email account that can be used by multiple people.

Step 1: Visit Google and click Sign in in the upper right-hand corner.

google search

Step 2: Click on Create Account at the bottom of the page.

sign in with google

Step 3: You’ll see an option pop up to create an account for yourself or to manage your business. Since your YouTube account will be for your business, choose To manage my business.

sign in to select option

Step 4: To officially create your Google account, enter your name and desired email and password before clicking Next. Then, enter a recovery email and your birthday, gender, and phone number.

Note: Google requires all users to be at least 13 years old.

Step 5: Lastly, agree to Google’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and verify your account with a code sent via text or phone call. Congrats! You’re now the proud owner of a Google account.

Creating a YouTube Account

Now that you have a Google account, you’re almost ready to publish some awesome video content.

But, we’re not done quite yet — you now need to set up a YouTube Brand Account. A Brand Account allows users to manage editing permissions and create a more holistic online presence.

Step 1: Visit YouTube. In the upper right-hand corner, note that you’re probably already logged into your new Google account. (If you’re not, click Sign in and enter your new Google account username and password.)

YouTube account create page

Step 2: Once you’ve signed in, click your account module and click Your channel in the drop-down menu.

dropdown for you tube channel creation

Step 3: You’ll see two options for creating your channel. Choose to Use a custom name.

create your channel window

Step 4: Now, you should be prompted to create your channel name.

Note: You can always update or change your channel name from your account settings, so don’t worry if you aren’t 100% sure about your selected label.

channel name window

Customizing Your YouTube Brand Account

Step 1: Click on Customize Channel to get started.

you tube channel customization window

Step 2: Add a channel profile picture and channel art. These will be the first parts of your YouTube account that users see when visiting, so be sure to use images that are easily recognizable and consistent with your overall branding.

youtube customization

Step 3: To add a profile picture, click on the default profile picture in the upper left-hand corner of your channel to upload an image.

Note: It may take several minutes for your channel icon to appear after uploading.

Step 4: Next, upload your banner image and video watermark.

After you have customized the visual elements for your channel, click Basic info to add a channel description, a company email, and links to your company website and other social platforms.

customize your youtube channel

With the basic profile complete, it’s time to add a few finishing touches! Before we move on, you should know that you can customize the way your YouTube channel looks to subscribers and unsubscribed visitors. This means that unsubscribed viewers would see different featured content than dedicated, subscribed viewers. Pretty cool, right?

One of the main ways you can take advantage of this feature is by adding a channel trailer for people who haven’t subscribed and adding a featured video for returning subscribers.

Adding a trailer or a featured video shares the same process

So follow the steps below to do both.

Pro Tip: You’ll want to record two different videos if you plan to have separate content for each audience.

Step 1: Start by uploading your first video to youTube. Select Content in the menu on the left side. Then, click Upload Videos.

Step 2: Select a video file from your computer that you would like to appear as a trailer to people who aren’t yet subscribed to your channel.

video selection vindow

Step 3: Follow the prompts on the screen to process, customize, and publish your video.

steps in youtube

Now that your first YouTube video has been published, it’s time to add it as a trailer for potential subscribers to see when they visit your channel.

Step 4: Head back to Your channel and select Customize Channel.

Note: You should see the video you just uploaded on this screen now.

your youtube channel window

Step 5: Select Add Channel trailer for people who haven’t subscribed.

customize channel

Step 6: Select your uploaded trailer from the library of videos you’ve uploaded.

video selection window

Step 7: Click Publish to share the new trailer to your potential subscribers.

customize you tube channel

Setting Permissions for Your YouTube Brand Account

Before you start implementing your YouTube marketing plan, you should decide who on your team will need access to the account. Granting access to team members will allow them to help manage the channel through their own Google accounts.

When you grant access to a Google account, there are three options for roles:

  • Owner: Owners have full editing power overall company Google properties. They can add or remove managers, edit business information, respond to reviews, and more.
  • Manager: Managers have the same editing powers as Owners, except they cannot add or remove page roles or remove listings. Anyone editing a YouTube channel must be a Manager or an Owner.
  • Communications Manager: Communications Managers can respond to reviews and do several other actions but they cannot use YouTube’s video manager, upload content, or view analytics.

Step 1: To add individuals to your account, tap your Google account icon in the upper right-hand corner to open the drop-down menu and go to Settings.

youtube options

Step 2: Click Add or remove manager(s).

ads remove manager

Step 3: Click Manage Permissions.

youtube permission manager

Step 4: Select the people icon in the upper right-hand corner to invite new users. To grant permission to a person, enter their Gmail address and indicate their role.

Increase more views, more subscribers, more revenue on youtube with one free software. Click on below link now.

Get more information now.

10-step YouTube marketing strategy

Step 1. Create a YouTube channel for business

Start by opening a Brand Account on Google.

You can create a YouTube channel with your regular Google account, but if you do, only you can access it. Plus, the account will be under your name and depending on your settings, may connect viewers to your personal email address.

With a Brand Account, multiple authorized users can log in simultaneously. Even if you don’t need this right now, it’s a good option to keep available as your business grows. With a Brand Account, you can also open and manage multiple YouTube channels.

Read our step-by-step guide for detailed instructions on how to create a YouTube business account.

Step 2. Learn about your audience

If you’re just starting out on YouTube, set aside some time to learn about YouTube demographics. This includes quantitative data, like where the majority of users live (nearly 15% of site traffic comes from the U.S.), predominant age range (81% of 15–25 year-olds ), and viewing preferences (70% of watch time is on mobile). If your audience skews younger, it might be worth noting that Gen Z viewers are most likely to search for short-form content.

watch time window

Collect whatever qualitative data you can find, too. For instance, did you know that in 2019, more than 99 million hours of guided meditation videos were watched? Or that between 2017 and 2019 viewership of videos with “thrift with,” “thrifting in” or “how to thrift” in the title increased by 10X.

With a YouTube channel for business, you have access to an Analytics tab. If you already have one up and running, use this tab to learn about your YouTube audience. Monitor watch time and the demographic stats available. Do they confirm your assumptions? How much overlap is there with audiences on your other social channels?

youtube channel analytics

If viewers have left comments, read through them to see what you can learn about their interests and preferences. Visit the Community tab, too. If there’s something specific you’d like to know, this is a good place to post a question or create a poll.

Compare your YouTube audience with your other social audiences. Identify the content your audiences connect with most and use it to brainstorm video ideas. Plan to create content for the audience you have and the desired audience you plan to grow.

Step 3. Research your competition

Next up: Competitive analysis. Like any platform, YouTube is a competitive space. By conducting an audit of competitors, you can see how your channel measures up and identify opportunities.

Identify competitors

Start by identifying three to five competitors. If you’re not sure, try Google Ads’ free Keyword Planner to see which companies rank for keywords associated with your brand. Or see what channels appear in searches on YouTube for the same keywords. (After hitting Search, filter results by Channel.)

Record key metrics such as subscriber counts and viewership stats so you can use them as benchmarks for your channel. Look at titles and descriptions to see what keywords they use. Read the comments on these videos to see what people are saying. Chances are their audience will overlap with yours.

Conduct a SWOT

Conduct a SWOT analysis to identify the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats presented by each competitor. This is a good framework for spotting what’s working and not working, and where you can carve out a niche with your YouTube channel.

Pro tip: Make sure your competitors aren’t serving ads on your videos! If they are, it’s possible to block them in Google’s ad manager. More on that here.

Step 4. Learn from your favourite channels

Scroll through your subscriptions and your YouTube history. As you do, take note of the techniques and formats that hold your attention. What keeps you coming back to these channels? How do the most popular channels drive views, subscriptions, and engagement?

Take a look at YouTube’s trending videos. Even if these videos have nothing to do with your business or industry, there’s a lot you can learn from them. Are all of these videos high-production, or are they shot more casually? What is the most common length of these videos? Do they have a host? Do they add special effects or text overlays?

Look up your favorite brands and do the same exercise. Start to think about your YouTube content strategy. What type of content makes sense for your brand? Do you plan to use YouTube to tell stories, offer tutorials, or establish your brand as a trendsetter? Or all of the above?

Step 5. Optimize your videos to get views

YouTube is a video search engine. Like Google—which happens to own YouTube—videos results are ranked by titles, keywords, descriptions, and other factors. Then there’s the YouTube recommendation algorithm, which determines 70% of what people watch.

Optimize your videos so that they stand the best chance to show up in search results and get more views. We’ve created a detailed guide on how to get views on YouTube. But here are a few SEO pointers to start with:

Write a strong title

The title is one of the primary signals YouTube’s algorithm and viewers look at to evaluate your video.

Include relevant keywords. Check what words people use to find your channel in Traffic Sources in YouTube Analytics. Take a look at Google Trends and Google Ads’ Keyword Planner, too. See if any of these popular search terms can be added to your title.

But avoid clickbait. False advertising typically leads to lower retention, which in turn leads to a lower ranking. If the keywords you find don’t match your topic, dig a little deeper in your keyword research. Focus on the topic and content.

Tip: Pinterest is a good place to check, too. Search a keyword like “makeup” and see what else pops up.

Put the most important keywords up front. If you’re numbering episodes or part of a series, save that for the end. YouTube allows for 70 characters, but we recommend 60 or less. This way your title is less likely to be cut off in suggested videos, search, and mobile results. Excessive punctuation, all-caps, and vulgar or sensational language is a no-no.

Create a standout thumbnail

Even before titles, thumbnails are the first thing people see. Ninety percent of the best-performing videos on YouTube have one thing in common when it comes to thumbnails: They’re custom.

With a custom creative, your thumbnail is more likely to stand out. Another advantage is that you can ensure the image and title work in tandem. If your video is a thumbnail or how-to, show the end result or a before and after thumbnail. This builds anticipation: People will watch to see how you reach the final result.

Make sure your thumbnail is as high res as possible (2MB is the max size). Specs are: 1280 x 720 pixels (16:9 ratio).

Write a keyword-rich description

Prioritize the first few lines of your description to provide a brief summary of your video topic. As early as possible, plug in the keywords you’ve zeroed in on. Try not to sound too spammy. Write incoherent, natural-sounding sentences.

YouTube shows roughly 300 characters (about three lines) above the Show More button users need to click on to see your full description. This is where you should add more context for your video. For example, if you feature several products, provide links to them.

Add links to your website and social channels as well. If you’re pushing subscriptions, you can even include an auto-subscribe short link or like to other videos and playlists that might be relevant. If your video is long, create a “table of contents” with timestamps, so viewers can jump to sections.

Make the most of your 5,000 characters and 15 hashtag limit. But remember to follow YouTube’s hashtag rules.

Add cards, end screens, bumper ads, and watermarks

Cards, end screens, bumper ads, and watermarks are clickable CTAs you can add to your YouTube videos. These elements help your videos drive actions and keep people on your channel.

Here’s a rundown of your different options:

  • Cards: Small, transparent CTAs that expand when clicked. Up to five can be used per video to direct viewers to your website, fundraiser, playlist, and more.
  • End screens: Up to four clickable frames that appear in the last 5-20 seconds. Use them to promote related content, your website, subscriptions, etc.
  • Bumper ads: Unskippable six-second video ads appearing at the start or end of a video.
  • Watermarks: Custom subscribe buttons visible only to non-subscribers. To add them to your videos, follow YouTube’s instructions.

Remind viewers to like, share, and subscribe

There’s a reason a lot of YouTube videos end with the host calling on viewers to “like, share, and subscribe.” It works. Asking never hurts. Sometimes people need a helpful reminder. Plus, this type of engagement earns points with the YouTube algorithm.

Hit more subscriber milestones with these 17 tips.

Step 6. Upload and schedule your videos

Now that you’ve created and optimized your videos, it’s time to schedule them for publication.

For most 18-34-year-olds, YouTube has replaced traditional network television. But it hasn’t necessarily replaced expectations. People still expect videos—especially webisodes and series—to be available on a reliable schedule.

Check your channel analytics to see if there’s a day or hour that tends to have a high amount of viewership and engagement. Once you’ve pinpointed the best time to post, aim to publish regularly within this window.

Scheduling tools let you maintain consistency on auto-pilot. You can upload and schedule your YouTube videos in advance from the Creator Studio, or with a tool like Hootsuite, which allows you to cross-promote your video releases with posts on other social channels all from the same dashboard.

Step 7. Optimize your channel to attract followers

Make it easier for people to find and follow you on YouTube by optimizing your channel. Here are a few ways to prime your account for search, views, and follows.

Complete your YouTube profile

If you haven’t yet, add finishing touches to your YouTube profile. Fill out or add some polish to the following areas:

Channel description

In the “About” tab of your profile, provide a keyword-rich overview of what people can expect when they subscribe to your channel. Include links to your website and social accounts here, too.

Channel icon

Upload a high-res version of your logo.

Channel art

Use this banner space to welcome viewers to your channel. This area is a good place to promote your channel schedule, or an upcoming exhibit, product launch, or service. Master channel art and nab free templates with this guide. You can also add a list of Featured channels to your profile. Feature your other owned YouTube channels, or give subscribers easy access to other YouTube resources they might be interested in. By doing this, you align your brand with complementary companies and add value to your page.

dashboard of your youtube channel

Add social media links to your banner

Your YouTube banner is a prime position to add a few key links. Use this area to link to your website, other social channels, or even an auto-subscribe prompt. Put what matters most to your company upfront.

Create a channel trailer

Just like a movie trailer, your YouTube channel trailer is an opportunity to preview your channel. Channel trailers auto-play when an unsubscribed visitor lands on your page. So it’s best to assume they’re new to your page, and possibly your brand.

Introduce your brand to new viewers. Offer a sneak peek of what viewers can expect from your channel. Build intrigue and anticipation that leaves viewers wanting more. Make a bold brand statement. Most importantly, give viewers a good reason to subscribe.

Organize videos into playlists

Don’t leave things up to YouTube’s algorithm. YouTube playlists auto-play a series of videos—so viewers can keep watching your channel without being diverted elsewhere.

Design your playlists so as to be cohesive and have a logical progression. Organize a series of tutorials from beginner to advanced skill levels. Think like YouTube’s algorithm. If someone likes your first video—what type of video would they want to watch next?

Playlists can be created with your own videos, or include partner videos. Similarly, if you’ve started networking with other YouTubers, see if you can persuade them to add your videos to their playlists.

You can build playlists on YouTube, or you can manage them with Hootsuite. Remember to include relevant keywords in your playlist titles to boost your YouTube SEO.

Add captions and translations

Only 33% of YouTube’s most popular videos are in English. And more than 60% of a YouTube channel’s views originate outside the creator’s country. Expand the reach of your videos with YouTube’s built-in translation tools.

Start by adding captions to your videos. This will make your video accessible to non-native speakers, people with hearing impairments, and people watching with sound off. YouTube also offers automatic captions, but the result is never perfect. If you use them, make sure to edit transcripts for errors.

Check YouTube Analytics to see top locations and the top subtitle languages people choose to watch your videos. From there, translate your title, description, and transcript so you can provide subtitles. You can either do this yourself or crowdsource translations from your community—but again, this option isn’t foolproof.

If you’ve put the effort into creating a video, it’s worth the extra effort or fee to have your transcript translated. Don’t let audiences think your business cuts corners or doesn’t value their business.

Looking for more ways to promote your YouTube channel? Find them here.

Step 8. Try YouTube advertising

YouTube advertising can be an effective way to expand your reach beyond your channel. Looking to grow your channel? Target an audience you think might be interested in your content.

Want to promote your brand, an event, or a new product? YouTube ads are good for that, too. People are three times more likely to pay attention to online video ads versus TV ads.

YouTube ads are available in these four categories:

  • Skippable in-stream ads
  • Non-skippable in-stream ads (including bumper ads)
  • Video discovery ads (formerly known as in-display ads)
  • Non-video ads (i.e., overlays and banners)

For more info on YouTube’s ad formats and how to use them, check out our detailed guide to YouTube advertising.

Step 9. Try working with an influencer

One of the best ways to showcase your brand and reach a wider audience on YouTube is by working with an influencer.

According to Google, 60% of YouTube subscribers are more likely to follow shopping advice from their favorite creator over their favorite TV movie personality. Why? It’s often a lot easier to relate to creators. With the right partnership, creators can transfer that reliability and trust to your brand.

When it comes to these partnerships, let the influencer do the talking. The more control you try to exert over the partnership, the more you’ll impact the influencer’s brand. This makes the whole effortless genuine—and their followers will see it from a mile away.

To promote the launch of a new razor, Schick teamed up with MsVaughnTV and other YouTube influencers. Each influencer was given leeway to create a concept that felt natural for them. This approach made for more natural product discovery, too: 50% of the campaign’s organic views came from people browsing content on YouTube.

Step 10. Analyze and adapt

With your YouTube channel up and running, it’s time to start measuring your success. And failures. Getting YouTube marketing right involves testing and experimenting. Not everything will work, and that’s okay as long as you learn from it.

Use YouTube Analytics to monitor the growth of your channel and track the performance of your videos. When you publish a new video, keep an eye on:

  • Significant changes in subscriber count
  • New or changing audience demographics
  • Video playback locations and traffic sources
  • Device reports (mobile, desktop, smart TVs, etc.)

What you find should inform your YouTube marketing strategy moving forward. Don’t undervalue qualitative metrics, too. Read the comments to learn exactly what people think about your video. Visit the Community tab often to see what people are talking about.

How to create an effective video campaign in five steps

Select the video for your campaign

Before advertising on YouTube, you’ll need to upload your video to your YouTube channel. Once it’s uploaded, simply paste the video’s URL into the box provided.

Create your video ad

The next step is to choose the text that’ll communicate who you are and what you offer. This includes a headline and description. The aim of your headline is to grab the attention of potential customers and highlight the product or service you’re trying to promote. Use the description text to feature your key messages (for example, the thing that makes you unique or a limited-time offer) and encourage people to watch your video ad.

In this section, you’ll also be asked to choose a thumbnail image for your video advertisement. These images are the first thing YouTube users see before they click on your ad. You know your business better than anyone else – choose the image you think best represents you and your content. If possible, you should try to match the image you choose to what you have mentioned in your ad text. For example, if your video text talks about surfing, choose the video still that captures someone surfing.

Choose where you want people to go after they click on your video ad.

Getting your story in front of potential customers is a great first step – but you should also consider what you want to happen when they click on your ad. Whether you send people to your website or your YouTube channel, the decision you make should tie to your online video marketing goals.

You can send people to:

Your YouTube channel to showcase your other videos and gain an audience on YouTube – increasing your video views, shares, and subscribers

Your website to learn more about what you offer, make a purchase, sign up for a newsletter, submit a form or any other action that’s valuable to your business

Set an online video marketing budget

When you first start running video ads, you may not know how much you need to spend to achieve your goals. The good news is you’re in control. You set a daily budget. And you can change or pause your video campaigns at any time.

Choose your target audience

Marketers use a concept called “targeting” to refer to the techniques they use to make sure their advertising gets in front of people likely to be interested in what their business has to offer.

By setting the correct targeting for your video campaigns, you can make sure you’re getting the most of your budget.

After considering where your likely customers are located, pick the location(s) where you want your ads to show. You can specify countries, regions, and cities.

Next, you’ll choose when potential customers may see your video ad. You’ll pick from these two options to show your video ads when people are:

Searching on YouTube: Use TrueView discovery video ads to get in front of customers while they search for videos on YouTube

Watching videos on Youtube Use TrueView in-stream video ads to get in front of customers before they watch a video on YouTube