Few things frustrate an entrepreneur or a marketing team more than investing money in high-quality content, then getting little or no audience engagement. Often, there’s a simple reason why content falls flat: It’s not that it’s bad, just that nobody can find it. Content always needs to be optimized for discovery, and made more visible among search engine users. In other words, content creation always needs to be married to sturdy SEO.
That’s true not just for written content, but also for videos. After all, your company YouTube channel won’t yield results if nobody knows it’s there. The question is, how can you optimize your video content to ensure easy discoverability, and ultimately to get more eyeballs on your content?
Top Tips for Video SEO
The first thing to understand is that video SEO doesn’t work in quite the same way as website SEO. However, if you optimize your video content properly, it can provide you with heightened visibility in both Google and YouTube searches.
Start with Keywords
The natural starting place is with a list of keywords you’re targeting. These keywords should be representative of the way online consumers actually search for information—and the more specific and “niche” you can be, the better. (After all, the narrower you focus your keywords, the less competition there will be.)
Once you have your list of target keywords, the next step is to employ them judiciously. There are a number of places where you can insert these keywords, including:
- The title of your video
- The video file name
- The meta description
- A video transcript
- Timestamps and summaries
These are the areas where search algorithms will look for information about how to categorize your video content; as such, these are the areas where keywords are most useful.
Make a Thumbnail
Another important step is to create a custom thumbnail for your image.
Think about it this way: If someone conducts an online search and your video shows up in the search results, the first thing that person is going to see is the thumbnail image. As such, that thumbnail can be the deciding factor on whether that user actually clicks through and watches your content, or just keeps scrolling.
A custom thumbnail screen should draw attention and entice the user to click, but also provide a realistic sense of what the video content is going to be like.
Create a Corresponding Blog Post
Another video SEO strategy that can get results is to create a blog post to go along with your video. The content doesn’t have to totally overlap, but both the blog post and the video should target the same basic keywords. Consider embedding the video in the blog post and including a link to the blog post in the video description.
This way, both pieces of content can rank for the same keywords—and anyone who clicks through to the blog will see the video, while those who see the video will have a chance to visit the blog.
Ask for Engagement
One of the most important ways to increase your video’s SEO traction is to generate audience engagement—including views, likes, and comments.
You can’t force people to engage with your video, but you can ask them to—and we recommend doing just that. Include a brief call to action at the end of your videos to encourage interaction. Give viewers a gentle reminder that their “likes” are appreciated. Or, ask a specific question that your audience members can answer in the comments. (We advise against open-ended questions—“what do you think about this?”—which tend to get far fewer replies.)
Do Some Video Promotion
One of the key principles of content marketing is that it’s never enough to just make content; you also need to promote it. That’s true of blog posts and it’s just as true of your videos. Spread the word; get people interested!
There are a number of ways you can promote your video through the regular marketing channels. Do you have an email newsletter? Send out a link to your video, including a very brief description and call to action. Of course, it should almost go without saying that you’ll want to promote your video on social media, too.
Some companies have “news” sections on their websites; if that’s you, you might post new videos to this page, as a way of promoting video content while also showing your customers what’s going on with your business.
Find Out More About Successful Video Marketing
These are just a few of the ways in which you can make your videos real rankings generators. Ready to talk some more about video content and optimization? Our team is always available to chat. Contact enCOMPASS any time you’re ready.
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