Tech-Talk: Sh*t People Do To Make a Good YouTube Video

Last week, YouTube announced that the website now streams 4 billion online videos every day, and has nearly 60 hours Imageof video uploaded per minute. That’s a lot of streaming and uploading.

After we recovered from the shock of this news, we realized this was the perfect time to look at what makes a good video. What are people watching and why? How do you get 4 billion or even just 400 eyes on your video?

From a PR perspective, it’s not just about being funny, outlandish or controversial; you have to deliver interesting content that your target audience is going to find stimulating enough to pass along.  Keeping true to your brand and your mission is going to help you meet the right people on YouTube and other video sites.

With that in mind, here are a few tips for going viral:

  • Timing: Do unto others as you want done unto you.  While many will urge you not to make a video more than 60-90 seconds (and we generally agree with that), there is value in longer videos–with the right content and the right format. So, instead of a steadfast rule of numbers, ask yourself “Would I watch more than a minute of my video?” If you and four other people can truly answer “yes,” then spread your wings. If you can’t, keep it short and sweet.
  • Objectives: Decide on your audience before setting sail. Determine what you want from each video. You may want to illustrate thought leadership when you’re targeting reporters or specific businesses, or maybe you’re trying to target potential new employees. Each of these scenarios is going to require a different format and unique content. Identifying your audience for each video in advance will set you up for success.
  • Presentation: There are a few ways to present your video. You wouldn’t go to the beach in a suit and tie, and you wouldn’t walk into the boardroom in a bathing suit. “Down and dirty” might be great for showcasing your office environment. Polished and produced may be a better fit for a video in which you’re providing top tips to existing or potential clients. You have to determine your style in relation to your audience. 
  • Cross-Pollinate: You can make the most intelligent, creative, engaging video, but that will all go to waste unless you make sure people know about it. YouTube is a great network, but most people watch videos that other people have shared with them. Post your video on YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, send out an email or even create a monthly newsletter. Your video will only gain traction if you start spreading it.

YouTube and video continue to grow as mediums of content distribution and it’s important that businesses and companies understand how to reach their audiences–no matter who they are.

For more insight on how to use YouTube for business, check out this Business Insider post and this GigaOm post from 2009. Although it is three years old, this post is still one of the best sources of information on how companies can most effectively use YouTube.

Posted on January 31, 2012, in The Hit Board and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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