This week we are bringing you the first in our blog series Use YouTube to Your Advantage: A Marketing Manualwith this article on the 5 key principles for building a content plan.  

YouTube is an incredible platform which you can use to market your business. So, over the next 3 months we will show you how to use it to promote your products, your brand’s ethos and receive crucial feedback from your customers in return.

Here are the 5 guiding principles for creating a content strategy to ensure a truly successful marketing campaign for your brand…

1) Know your goal:

Before creating video content for YouTube,  establish your ultimate objective.  There are many ways in which YouTube can be useful in growing your brand, but only if you determine the goals of your videos before producing them.  Are you creating YouTube content to build audience awareness of your company?  If so, ensure viewers can recall and recognise your brand after watching.  Are you hoping to promote your product and drive sales?  Then ask yourself, are your videos going to encourage viewers to visit your website or research your product after viewing.  Maybe your goal is to grow customer loyalty.  If so, make sure YouTube users will recommend your brand or share your video after they watch.

2) Know your audience:

You may already have a clear sense of your target audience, but it is important to find out how they behave on YouTube.  Find out what videos they are watching, how active they are on the site, and whether they use their mobile devices to watch video content.  Google tools such as the YouTube Trends Dashboard, Our Mobile Planet, and Google.com/think can provide the answers to these questions, allowing you to pinpoint the habits of your audience and tailor your content accordingly.

3) Know your brand:

In order to effectively market your brand on YouTube, you need to establish what you stand for and how you want to present yourself to your audience.  Determine what you want viewers to know about your brand, products, or services, and then, make sure this resonates through your content.

4) Know the competition:

Spend time researching and watching the videos of your competitors and see what types of video content they are producing.  What are they doing successfully and where can they improve?  Use this research to inspire your own videos and to develop a YouTube content marketing strategy that sets your brand apart.  If you are unsure of where to find competitors, try searching YouTube for keywords related to your company and look at the videos associated with your industry.

5) Know what success looks like:

Before you can create truly great branded videos, you must identify what success looks like for you and your company.  Is a successful video one that attracts the most views?  Is it one that inspires a mass of user engagement? Only once you’ve established your personal idea of success can you create YouTube content with the potential to meet these aspirations.

Check out next week’s post where we’ll take a look at the content people love and provide you with the  10 fundamental principles of creating a creative YouTube strategy.

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