There are tons of statistics proving that online video is an excellent SEO tool. For example, here’s one from Forrester Research: “You are 53 times more likely to land on the front page of Google with a video than with text.” Publishing quality content (useful and relevant to your clients and prospects) on a regular basis, and optimizing that content so it gets found in search engines, is the most cost effective B2B marketing strategy. Videos can be an extremely effective tool for driving traffic to your blog, landing page or website.
YouTube is the second largest search engine next to Google. There’s synergy between the two platforms because Google owns YouTube. So YouTube offers a powerful way for your brand, products and services to be found by your target prospects. Here’s how to optimize your B2B marketing videos for top ranking in Google and on YouTube:
- Include the word “video” and your company name in the YouTube video description.
- Identify the highest traffic driving keywords for the product and/or service featured in your video. Strategically place these keywords in video titles, descriptions, tags, and YouTube video transcripts.
- Include a hyperlink to your website in the video description. Make sure the hyperlink is in the first sentence because roll-over viewing only displays in the first part of the description. This will drive traffic to your website and it gets your video indexed when someone does a search for your company.
- Choose an attention-grabbing thumbnail image that will elicit clicks. Videos that get more clicks rank higher in search.
- Enable comments, ratings, video responses, embedding and syndication. You want viewers to interact with your video to increase organic search rankings.
- Inbound links are important for SEO. An embedded video functions like an inbound link. Getting more websites to link to or embed your video will improve its search engine ranking. so promote your video via social media to people who might embed it or link to it.
- Include your keywords in the video script. Google uses speech recognition software to convert audio for closed-captioning, meaning your audio can be crawled by search engines.
- Higher ratings and more comments indicate higher quality and more interesting videos, so it’s helpful to generate as many ‘thumbs up’ ratings and comments as possible. The best way to do this is to create awesome content, and then to encourage people to view your video via your blog and social media profiles.
Convert with Quality
Assume you’ve attracted an appropriate audience (one that has a need for your complex B2B product or service) via SEO (or an email campaign or some other mechanism). Now that they’ve arrived at your video, you have to grab and hold their attention long enough to deliver your marketing messages. You need to convert them to willing viewers of the video. There are tricks of the trade to hold attention, a bikini-clad blonde is probably not the way you want to go, though.
SEO (or any other traffic generating technique) is useless if your traffic clicks away before they are exposed to your messaging. Video, when produced correctly, is the best vehicle on the planet for holding peoples’ attention. It’s that “produced correctly” requirement that trips people up. How many times have you launched a marketing video only to click away after a few seconds? Either it was too boring to make you want to watch it, or it was too blatantly promotional, or the production values were poor (low lighting, garbled audio, etc.). Emphasize quality so that yours is the video that gets watched. Follow these tips when making your marketing video:
- Keep It Short and Simple. One concept per video. No longer than three minutes in length.
- Video lends itself to visual storytelling. Use a story format. People are hard-wired to pay attention to stories, to remember them and to retell them.
- Deliver your value proposition within the first minute to ensure it’s consumed.
- Keep all voice-over and dialogue clear and concise. If a reader doesn’t understand a written sentence he can re-read it. A viewer must understand each spoken sentence the first time around. Clarity is key.
- Vary pace to maintain interest.
- Avoid static graphics – animate them whenever possible.
- Conclude with a strong call to action designed to get viewers to self-identify as a qualified lead.
Marketing videos with a well planned out and concise message produce outstanding results. Invest the time and energy to produce a quality, highly watchable video.