The days when YouTube was just a platform which regular folks used to share homemade videos of their kids' birthday parties and their cats are long gone. Today, it's regarded as one of the most powerful marketing platforms there are, and an accessible way for entrepreneurs to make money online.
However, being successful is not as easy as some make it out to be. Here are some common mistakes you as an entrepreneur need to avoid making if you want to really make the most out of this opportunity:
- You Avoid Engaging with Viewers
It goes without saying that you can't be successful on YouTube if no one else besides your mom or friends watches your videos. If you want people to watch, share and comment on your videos, you also need to be willing to engage with your viewers.
Yes, that includes those who have negative comments about your work or services as well. Answer questions and comment back as often as possible. This will help you build a strong community around your channel.
- You Only Focus on “Going Viral”
It's an epidemic. Everybody wants to go viral these days. Now, I'm not saying that it's a bad thing to want your video to go viral, but it shouldn't be the first thought that goes through your mind when you start working on a video. Your main goal should be to provide something of real value. Is your video useful, entertaining and innovative? Will it reach your audience? Those qualities are far more important than going viral.
Also, that “make-it-viral” mentality often shows in the videos, and once your audience spots it, they are not going to be too happy about it.
- You Don't Optimize Your Video Titles
Like Google, YouTube also uses video titles in their search algorithms. That's why it's very important you use keywords and phrases that you know your audience looks for in your video titles.
Unless you do so, your videos won't show up in the search results, which means your audience won't be able to reach you. The better your keywords are, the more views you're likely to get.
- You Don't Bother Branding Your Videos
Branding is important because it lets your audience know that a video is yours right away even if they see it on other websites or social media platforms. The good news is that branding your content on YouTube is actually not that hard. For instance, you could:
- Add a short branded video intro (no longer than 8 seconds).
- Use a branded background when shooting your videos.
- Edit in-video branded graphics like your channel’s logo.
- You Forget YouTube Is a Distinctive Platform
YouTube is a unique medium and therefore requires unique content. The viewers' experience is different when watching content on this platform, as opposed to watching it on TV for example.
[Image Credits: Daniel Bichler]
The screen people use to watch content is usually smaller, and their attention span is definitely a lot shorter. It's important to get your viewers' attention in the first few seconds of your videos or they will just click away. Also, it's usually best to keep your videos under 3 minutes, unless you have a really strong reason to do otherwise.
But most importantly, please, please don't be boring. Be bold, take risks. YouTube was built to support you with that.
Well, now you know about some of the most common pitfalls and how you can easily avoid them. Keep them in mind and you'll be on your way to building a stronger presence on YouTube. You know what else can help you with that?
Staying up-to-date with my blog posts and downloading my FREE eBook on the video marketing tools you need to get on top of things. I hope you'll do that next.