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What lessons can you learn from the ‘YouTube Generation’?
These days teenagers sat up in their bedrooms are coming up with videos that go on to get hundreds (if not thousands) of hits on YouTube and just as many shares via social media. Could us humble marketers learn any lessons from these YouTube sensations to promote our brands more effectively? What are they doing so right that they’re able to connect so well with their audiences?Here a few tips to help you get the most out of YouTube videos…

Tailor content specifically for YouTube
YouTube offers far more room for creativity than traditional platforms like TV advertisements. So it’s surprising to see how many brands aren’t taking advantage of this freedom and flexibility. They don’t need to condense their marketing message into 30 seconds as they might do for a TV commercial – instead they have the opportunity to run one or a series of long-form videos that tell a story. Ruth Barton, Managing Director of creative content agency VCCP Kin, notes: “It is a massive mistake brands make to run TV ads, when bespoke content that enhances existing content is a better strategy.”

 

Remember that older people use YouTube too

According to figures from Google and Ipsos, 90% of YouTube users are over 18, while 50% are over 35. Brands that are devising YouTube videos must therefore remember that it isn’t exclusively young people that are going to see them. The video sharing site attracts a hugely diverse audience that is evolving all the time – and marketers must bear this in mind when devising their next campaign.

 

Reflect changes in how people communicate

Visual forms of communication, such as Skype and FaceTime, are being used more and more these days. A whole generation is therefore growing up being able to see the person at the other end of the line – and this is how they’re used to communicating digitally.

But what about older YouTube users? Netmums is launching its own channel at the moment and Founder Siobhan Freegard has noted an interesting variation in how different age groups use the site. “My generation uses YouTube in a different way – when we look for a recipe we look for the text version as we don’t think we have time to watch a video,” she said. “In contrast, younger generation users want to watch the video and feel they don’t have time to read the text. Video is nearer to how we naturally communicate. We were taught to consume words by text but video offers a more human way to connect.” It’s a reminder of how simply uploading any old video to YouTube isn’t an automatic recipe for success – each clip must offer the right tone and style to resonate with its intended audience.

So if you plan to or are already creating YouTube videos to promote your brand, remember the basics of marketing and understand who it is you’re trying to reach. Only then can you make truly engaging video content.

 

Further Reading / Sources

Five marketing lessons from Generation YouTube. Marketing

Beginner’s Guide. YouTube.

The Beginner’s Guide to YouTube. Mashable.