Ah YouTube, it’s there for us when we need it most, showing us how to change a tyre, poach an egg or teach us a brand new skill. But when it comes to making our own awesome YouTube content, how do you break through the noise?
There are so many content creators on the platform now, it can be a little intimidating when it comes to getting started and getting your videos noticed. But do not fear! Getting your YouTube content seen is no where near as difficult as getting your written content seen.
Want to know exactly how to give your video the best chance possible of getting those all important views? Go ahead, get stuck in!
Why bother with YouTube SEO?
I know, you’ve already spent ages filming and editing and uploading and now I’m telling you you’re going to have to do more work?! Just for this one tiny video?
Just like a new blog post, your YouTube video needs a bit of care and attention to fly freely from the nest. If you don’t support it getting off the ground, it’s just going to crash and be forgotten by the world.
Imagine making a film, but you don’t advertise it and you only share it with 5 of your closest friends, would it get thousands of views? Would it get nominated for awards or win an Oscar? No, because you didn’t tell the entire world about it!
Making sure your YouTube content is ‘optimised‘ for the words that you think people will type in to find your video, means that YouTube will be able to link your video with those words.
Example: You’ve made a video about how to make poached eggs, you want people looking how to make poached eggs to find your video, so you ‘optimise‘ for the words ‘how to make poached eggs‘. That means, when someone types in those words into YouTube, they’ll find your video and you’ll be helping them with their egg related issues!
Treat your YouTube video like a blog post
When it comes to promoting and sharing your YouTube videos, think about it exactly the same as a blog post.
You’ve just hit publish, what’s next? Do you share it on your Facebook page? On your Twitter feed? Do you email it to people?
Whatever way you would get your blog out to your readers, do the same for your video. Why not write an accompanying blog post to go with the video? Giving you even more content to share and more chances of your video being seen.
You give your video a title (just like a blog post), you give it a description (same as an introduction to a blog post), you throw on a few tags (same as you would when choosing tags and categories for your blog post). See how it’s pretty similar?
What keywords should you target?
So now you know why you should spend a bit of time on your YouTube SEO and how you should be promoting it, but how do you know what keywords you should be optimising your video for? How do you know what questions people need answering?
This is where keyword research comes into it. Using a few tools, you’ll be able to see how many times a month a certain word or question is searched for. Yup, it’s like being psychic!
Keyword Planner and Keywords Everywhere will tell you how many times a keyword or phrase is searched for.
As you can see, when I type in ‘how to set up Twitter Ads‘ my video pops up 2nd in the results (thank you very much!) but the Keywords Everywhere tool also tells me how many times a month that phrase has been searched for. The ‘volume‘ is 10 searches a month, you can see it underneath the search bar at the top there.
Over on the right, you can see Tube Buddy in action. This doesn’t tell you the actual search amount, but it does give you an idea of how often that term is searched for within YouTube and how much competition you would have for it. The higher the competition, the harder it will be to get your video to the top of the results pages!
Using these tools can help you put a list of either video topics together or just a list of keywords you can use to help your video move up those search result pages.
How do you target them?
Ok, now you have the actual words or questions you want your video to pop up for when someone searches for them, so how do you go about making your video associated with those words?
The easiest way to do this is to follow this list and make sure you’ve ticked them all off once your video has gone live:
- Make sure your main keyword or the question your video is answering is in the title (it’s helpful when people know what the video’s actually about)
- Make sure the keyword or question is within the very first paragraph of your description
- Make sure the keyword or question and variations of it, are included in the tags
- Make sure your thumbnail name has your keyword or question within it
- Turn on the captions and ensure that they are correct
- Add your video to a playlist that also has your keyword or question in the title
- Once the video is live, comment on the video with the keyword or question, heart your own comment and pin it to the top
Obviously there is a lot more to YouTube SEO than just adding in a few keywords. The engagement rate, view count, like count and share count all come into play as well. That’s why the marketing part is so important, you need to get those first few people viewing your content, liking and sharing in order to get the most out of all the work you’ve put in.
It’s a long process, but trust me, if you can get your video to the top of YouTube search results, the likelihood is that it will also be featured highly in normal Google search results, see below:
If you put in the time and effort, you will see results! Answering a frequently asked question is your best bet for driving a huge amount of people to your content and all it takes is one successful video to kick things off in a big way!