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YouTube SEO: How to optimize your videos and why it's important

By: Jessica Lizza

It’s no secret that attention spans are getting shorter. After all, according to Buffer if people even make it to a piece of your content, they spend fifteen seconds or less on it before they move on.

Yes, even with this knowledge we’re still asking you to read to the end of this post. Trust us.  It’ll be worth it.

That’s why your digital marketing strategy should include video content that is optimized both for search as well as for audience engagement.


Why Video?

You’re looking to gain brand or product recognition, right? Not only is video content a great way to do that, but it’s also proven to drive engagement, conversions, and revenue. With consumers being 64-85% more likely to buy a product after watching a product video, compared to viewers who don’t watch videos, how can you not capitalize on that?

Youtube is the second largest search engine in the world, clocking in at over 30 million visitors per day. Visitors aren’t just coming to YouTube for entertainment, either. They turn to the channel for education, product reviews, industry insight, you name it. But, with great traffic comes much competition: 300 hours of new video is added to YouTube every day. That’s 12.5 times more viewable content than there is time to view it.

Your optimization is becoming just as important as shifting your content delivery to video because it needs to be found. It’s no secret that videos get featured higher in Google search results, so optimizing them for both YouTube search as well as Google search is critical to achieving positive results. So how do you go about making this happen?

Video Content & Keyword Research

Before you let the excitement to start filming get the best of you, there are a few things you need to consider. First, identify your goals. What does your brand stand for? What do you want your audience to know? Do you want them to convert right away or just engage?

Of course, if you’re not giving your audience what they want, chances are even the best optimization won’t get much traction.

Researching the right content for your audience and figuring out where they are getting it from now is a great jumping off point. As you work your research into your strategy, be certain to identify the KPI’s that will measure your success, and be ready to use the results to make adjustments to your approach. You’re not likely to create a video that goes viral, so you’ll need to be ready to establish a cadence of regular video production in order to gain long-term success.

Video Optimization

Optimization is by far the most important step when creating your personal brand and getting your content in front of your audience. So, there are a couple things you should know.

Longer videos rank better than shorter videos. We’re talking 10 minutes or more. The average length of the videos that make it to the first page on a search is 15 minutes long.

Audience interaction also strongly correlates to your ranking. So, make sure the thumbnails you choose to preview your videos are compelling and don’t be afraid to ask your audience to take action. Sometimes all they need is a little push to subscribe or comment.

Keep the first 48 hours top of mind because the YouTube algorithm is unforgiving. Seriously. Hype up your video before you post through email and social media. Then focus on audience retention because YouTube ranks your content higher based on how long your video keeps users on a page.

Start your video off with a quick summary so people stay hooked. Your title should be optimized for search, and your video should deliver on the subject of your video, don’t spend too long on introductions, and make sure what you’re providing is quality content and not just a lot of mediocrity.

What's Next for Video Content?

YouTube may be the second largest search engine in the world, but the future of video goes beyond YouTube to the many more upstart video platforms out there. Think Instagram TV, Facebook Watch, or Vimeo — and that’s just to name a few. Pretty soon, it won’t just be YouTube optimization that you need to worry about.

What does Tallwave recommend? Stay on your toes and stay up to date with the emerging platforms so you can be ahead of the curve in optimizing for those. Need help formulating your strategy? We’d love to partner with you.

Research conducted by Tallwavers Anna and Colin

Written by Jessica Lizza

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