How to Create Videos that Convert
Ultimately, none of what we’ve discussed so far matters much if your videos suck. Whether the content is bad or they just aren’t actionable, videos that are incapable of driving results just waste your time and money. When creating videos for YouTube, focus on specific goals. For many businesses, that will be lead generation and sales.
There’s several strategies you can use to create videos that are more successful at converting. These include:
Creating videos that you know will be searched for by members of your target audience, organizing them into a playlist, and placing a CTA at the end to learn more, either through a lead magnet or by contacting you.
Organizing videos into playlists which act as a funnel that push towards conversions; users are more likely to convert from you after several videos instead of just one
Creating videos that offer your product as a solution to a customer’s problem
There’s a lot of room to get creative with strategies here. The key is, though, to focus on specific goals and create videos to accomplish them; not the other way around. Keep the digital sales funnel in mind, just like you would on your blog, and nudge users towards conversion accordingly.
When I’m asked “Should I monetize my channel?” by a client, I always ask “do you mean monetize like show ads and try to get paid?” For most businesses, I do not recommend that course of action. I have a few good reasons why.
The first is that viewer attention spans- and loyalty- are a bitch. I’m even lumping in my own impatience online here; as a user, if I click to watch a tutorial, an ad pops up, and I see a similar tutorial in the “You May Also Like This” feed, I’ll give that one a shot instead. I’m not kidding. I’ve done this twice today. You don’t want to do anything that will cause viewers to lose interest in your video, or worse, to click to a competitor’s video instead.
Plus, the money you’ll make as a result of these monetization options isn’t exactly going to be sending you into early retirement. You might make something like $1 per 1,000 views, and you can’t even get paid until you hit the $100 mark. For most businesses, this takes ages. Many find that it’s not worth the risk of losing viewers for pennies of potential profit.
The goal for most businesses on YouTube is to monetize through soft-selling and lead generation, not actual pay-per-video-view ads. Focus on this strategy, which we’ve discussed how to do in other sections, and you’ll make much more profit from YouTube than by running ads on your videos.
The two exceptions here are 1) if you’ve built up a large subscriber base who you know will happily wait through the ads for your content, and 2) if your business is becoming semi-famous on YouTube. Still, for the latter, wait until you have at least 5-10 thousand subscribers before enabling ads.
How to Monetize YouTube
If you decide that monetization is the right choice for your business and/or that you vehemently disagree with me, here’s how to monetize YouTube videos.
Go to your Creator’s Studio, and then click on the Channel tab. You’ll see the monetization box, where it says “Enable.” Click on it.
You’ll see the requirements that YouTube has. These are:
- You’ve accepted the YouTube partner terms
- You’ve requested access to AdSense
- You set your monetization preferences
- Your channel has had 10,000 views
While you need at least 10,000 views to be able to monetize the account, you can start the submission process before that. There’s a good chance that you’ve already accepted YouTube partner terms when creating your account, and that you have AdSense access for your site (if not, you can do so here).
When you set your monetization preferences, you’ll see several options. Select the ones you’d want to use, and hit “save.” These include:
- Display ads (desktop only), which you must select to monetize. These appear above the “what you might like to watch” videos.
- Overlay ads, which are desktop only and show up as a small overlay in front of your videos.
- Sponsored cards, which can be shown to users on all devices, and will appear to the side of your videos.
- Skippable video ads, which play before your video and will be shown to both desktop and mobile users.
Once your channel gets 10,000 views, you’ll start earning money on video views if it is approved. Make sure your account is in good standing and following community guidelines.
How to Advertise on YouTube
What if you want to be on the other side of the monetization- if you want to use ads to promote your business, instead of profiting from views of said ads? This is something I can happily recommend for businesses. Here’s how to advertise on YouTube:
To get started, click here. This takes you to YouTube’s ad platform. YouTube Ads are actually run through Google Adwords, so if you don’t already, they’ll have you create an account. Once you do this, click “Start Now.”
The YouTube/Adwords ad creator looks a little different than what Facebook/Pinterest/Twitter/Quora ads managers look like. They display all four creation steps on a page, and you click on each in order to add and edit the content there. First, select your video.
You can search for the title or URL of the YouTube video that you want to promote.
Next, add in your ad text and choose your Thumbnail. Remember that this text is designed purely to act as a CTA; it doesn’t need to be a video title or description.
Decide where you want to send users who click the ad. You can send them to your channel, or to your site. In the majority of cases, sending viewers to your site will be the most beneficial.
Next, set your budget and your maximum CPC (optional). YouTube Ads work on a bidding system like all other PPC systems, and you’ll only pay when viewers view the ad.
The last step here is particularly crucial: the targeting section of the campaign creation. You can target based on location, gender, age group, their web activity, and interests. Take all of these into consideration; interest targeting is perhaps even more important here than it is on Facebook Ads.
Once all this is filled out, you’ll review the ad an enter in billing information. Then submit!
How to Host YouTube Contests
We all know about Facebook contests, Instagram contests, and even Pinterest contestshttps://blog.hootsuite.com/secrets-youtube-contest/. But what about YouTube contests? They’re not as common, but they are a great strategy. Since they’re not as common, this gives you an edge if you decide to use them. Like all other social contests, a YouTube contest can do a lot to help increase subscribers, engagement, and social shares. And, when executed correctly, lead generation and/or user generated content.
Different common types of YouTube contests include:
- Commenting contests, where viewers leave a comment as their entry; this is designed to drive engagement.
- Subscriber contests, where non-subscribers can enter by subscribing to your channel
- Response video contests, where viewers are encouraged to create and upload their own videos in response to yours. By requiring them to make them “response videos,” they’ll be easier to find.
- Vote contests, where users are asked to vote for their favorite option, similar to the Pinterest concept here. This may take users off the site.
If you want to make lead generation possible with a YouTube contest, you’re in luck. ShortStack recently released a new contest software template just for YouTube contests. This template allows you to capture lead information just like you would on Facebook or Instagram contests utilizing the software. Users can actually get entries by voting, or by sharing with their friends. You also have the options that come with the rest of ShortStack software, like setting age limits. If you’re going the contest route to boost your strategy and engagement, I recommend testing out the ShortStack templates.
YouTube marketing is often completely forgotten about by most businesses, but it could just be the tool you need to set you apart from your competition.
By approaching YouTube as another leg to your content marketing strategy, you’ll be able to create great video content that will enhance both content and social media marketing.
Video is the hottest thing in marketing right now, and I don’t think that’s going away; embrace it by signing up your business for YouTube and diving in today.
What do you think? Do you use YouTube marketing to benefit your business? How do you use YouTube in your marketing strategy? Leave us a comment and let us know what you think!