Content marketing can be a very valuable promotional tool for your brand, product, or service. But, rather than just uploading a bunch of commercials to YouTube, you should be offering content that is invaluable to people in your target audience. In this week's Creator's Tip, we give you some very practical steps about how to create a great content marketing strategy for your YouTube channel:
YouTube Creator Playbook For Brands: Content Marketing Strategy
YouTube has just released their Creator Playbook for Brands. It's a 100 page document that advises brands on just how they can leverage the platform effectively. We are going to break the Playbook down for you over the next few weeks, starting with part one which is all about how to create a content marketing strategy. The big picture idea here is to figure out where you need to intersect your audience's passion points with your brands value proposition. What value is your brand providing and and how does that connect with what your target audience is really passionate and excited about? How do you make those two things work together? That's what your video content marketing strategy should revolve around.
Types of Content Marketing Strategy
The Playbook for Brands highlights three types of potential content strategy;
#1 Inspiration: To inspire your target audience, tell them a story that they can relate to. Budweiser are consistently good at doing this, which is why 'Puppy Love' was the most shared video ad in February 2014:
#2 Education: Give your audience information that is going to be very valuable to them. Kony 2012 was created by the charity Invisible children to educate the world about the war criminal joseph Kony. It is about to reach 100 million views on YouTube.
#3 Entertainment: Make your audience laugh by sharing spectacular content. Old Spice do this on a spectacular scale:
Obviously, you could and should mix and match the above but try and remain consistent so that your audience always knows what to expect of you.
Types of Video Content
The Playbook breaks content down into three types; Hygiene, Hub, and Hero.
Hygiene Content: What is your audience actively searching for online and what kind of evergreen content can you create that will also be valuable to them and attract consistently high views all day long? What is a common problem or issue that your target audience has and what kind of solution can you offer? That's hygiene content.
Hub Content: Hub content is more ongoing, regular, consistent content that fits well with the audience and their passion points.
Hero Content: These are the big event type videos, something that your brand may only do once or twice a year. Think of content based around the Super Bowl, or Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Creating a Viable Video Content Marketing Strategy
Maybe you are reading this and thinking, that's great but we really don't have the resources to pull this off. Well, YouTube, via the Playbook, addresses this concern and shows brands how to do just that in three different ways:
- You create the content yourself
- You collaborate with other creators/brands
- You could curate content that would be valuable to your audience. They may start to look to you to be a trusted source of information
How To Distribute Your Video Content
Obviously, YouTube would like you to do this via your YouTube channel (shocker!), but they also suggest that when you have that channel set up (and we'll go into detail about that in a future post), you should create and stick to a content or editorial calendar. This will help you plan ahead and provide consistency for your video schedule. Also, this should ensure that your video marketing is aligned with all of your other marketing campaigns.
You'll also need to find a way to 'activate' your target audience so that they connect and engage with your brand. More info on that soon
Understand your Audience's YouTube Behavior
The final step in your content marketing strategy is to understand your viewer's behavior on YouTube so you can make excellent videos that target them exactly. The first thing YouTube says is to:
Know what problem you're trying to solve and what role your video plays in that solution. For example, maybe you are just teasing at a solution so it encourages viewers to visit your website for more details or to buy that product or service. Or maybe you want to offer the full solution so you give something away for free and build up brand loyalty.
Know who you are trying to reach and how active they are on YouTube. What videos ar e they watching and what devices are they using to watch them? YouTube has tools and resources that can help you figure that out.
Know your brand on YouTube. What does your brand represent and what does it stand for? What do people think when they see your brand? YouTube Analytics can help you answer some of those questions by providing data on whether your videos are resonating with those in your target demographic.
Know your competition and identify what may be working well for them or uncover some opportunities that they may not be taking advantage of which you could. It always pays to keep an eye on other brands in your space - if they are clever, they will certainly be keeping an eye on you.
Know what success looks like for your content. You should really decide on this ahead of time so you have a clear idea of goals, whether that be for sales, views, subscribers or website traffic. What is the KPI that is going to tell you how well you are doing.
Let us know in the comments below about any tips or advice you may have for a brand who wants to create a strong content marketing strategy.