How To Create and Optimize Your Company’s YouTube Video (With A Secret Step That Not Many People Know About)

Painting FAQ videos

Did you know that every day YouTube has over ONE BILLION hours of video watched, which results in billions of views?

Is your business taking advantage of having videos on YouTube?  If not, today is a great day to start!

Most people think that creating a video for their business is really time consuming or that you need expensive equipment to start – Not true! All you need is your smartphone and a location that is relatively quiet with good lighting.

Choose Your Video Location Carefully

Find a room where there is a window in front of you so the natural light illuminates your face. Make sure that there is no distracting clutter in the background.

Prop up your phone so that it is pointed at you and you are centered in the frame. Another option for this is to purchase an inexpensive stand that holds your phone. Most of these stands also come with a remote control so that you can press “record” more easily.

Choose An Outfit To Film In

When choosing an outfit to film in, pick something that represents your brand. If you’re in a professional field, you can never go wrong with a suit and tie. If you’re in a service business, a polo or T-shirt with your logo makes sense.

Make sure that there aren’t any distracting patterns on what you are wearing. Patterns can appear fuzzy or out of focus on camera. Noisy jewelry is also a negative. You want your microphone to pick up what you are saying rather than your bracelet clanging off of your watch. 

Following these guidelines will ensure the professionalism of your video, and it will make you look good. 

Choose Your Video Topic

A lot of businesses have videos all over their website about themselves…and this is where they go wrong.

Your clients don’t really care about you, they just want to know that you are the best company to solve their problems. So, prove it!

Choose 5-10 questions that you are asked regularly, then answer them on video.  Don’t use industry jargon, and speak as if you are talking to a potential client.  

On an aside – A lot of people wonder if they should write scripts when filming videos like this.  It really depends on you.  Write a script, create an outline or conduct a practice run; do whatever makes you feel most comfortable.  You want to do your best to sound natural and relaxed, so your expertise shines through.

Stumped for ideas?  Go to https://answerthepublic.com/ and enter your business type or a problem that you solve. This website will give you frequently asked questions about the topic.

Edit Your Video For YouTube

This is the part of the process that most people find difficult. There are multiple ways to edit your video easily that don’t require expensive video software, like Adobe Premier Pro. If you have a Mac, you can use iMovie. There are also many apps on your phone that will allow you to edit a video you have created.

Whatever software you decide to use, make sure your sound is clear. If it allows you to add background music, choose something that is unobtrusive and appropriate for your business.

Secret Step That Most People Don’t Know About – Do Keyword Research For Your Video

Once you have your video completed, you’ll want to do a little research on keywords that go with it. Keyword research helps tell you:

  • Most googled phrases about your topic
  • How many times per month something is searched
  • How difficult it is to rank for that keyword or phrase
  • And more!

Use a tool like SEMrush or Ubersuggest for your research. Both options have free account versions.

In this example, we will use SEMrush.

Let’s say that you are a painting company, and you created a video on how to prep a house to paint. 

Go to SEMrush and type in “how to prep a house for painting” to see the search statistics that go with that phrase:

Painting company SEO statistics

As you can see, this keyword phrase is googled 320 times per month.  That means it’s a great phrase to use in the title of my video. The keyword difficulty is 42%, so it tells me that we will need well-structured and unique content to rank, which is exactly what my video is for.

The keyword research also shows me: 

  • Variations on the keyword that I could use in my video description
  • Common questions that are googled about my keywords
  • Related keywords that can act as secondary keywords that can be used in my video description on YouTube (more about this later)

When choosing a title for your video, be sure to choose a keyword phrase that is googled at least 100 times per month (rule of thumb).  Be sure to also choose 1-3 other keywords or phrases that go with your video that are searched over 20 times per month.

Upload Your Video To YouTube

You’ve created your video and have your research, so you are ready to upload your video to YouTube and have clients find you!

Before you upload your video, change the name of your video file to be the title of your video, separated by hyphens.  

So, in this example, I would name my video “How-to-prep-a-house-for-painting.mp4”

Then, go to your YouTube channel and hit the “Create” button.  Once you upload your video, YouTube has multiple fields that you can fill in.  The most important field is the “Title” field.  This is where we would put “How To Prep A House For Painting In 2021”.  If possible, it’s a great idea to add the year in the title to let YouTube know that this is the most up to date information available on your subject.

The next most important field is the description, which can be 5000 characters.  This is where you will tell people about the video, and why they should watch it.  Remember the secondary keywords that you chose?  This is the place to use them.  

You can’t use the same keyword phrase over and over again.  This is called “Keyword Stuffing” and YouTube/Google don’t like to see it.  So, you use keywords and phrases that are similar to your primary keyword (your title).

Another good rule of thumb is to place a link to a page on your website within the description. It helps you build backlinks and send people to your website if they are interested in your product or service.

YouTube will also ask if the video is made for kids (to create an age restriction if needed) as well as a few other questions that you should be able to answer easily.

Once the video has processed, the last thing that you will want to do is set the thumbnail.  This is the image that YouTube will use to represent your video before it is played.  Typically, we recommend creating an image that is 1280x720px and following the YouTube tips on creating an effective thumbnail: https://creatoracademy.youtube.com/page/lesson/thumbnails

BONUS – What To Do After Your Optimized Video Is Live On YouTube

Once you have your optimized video live on YouTube, don’t stop there.  You took the time to create it, now promote it!

There are multiple ways to get your video out there:

  • Post a link to the video on your social media
  • Share the video on LinkedIn
  • Send the video to your clients
  • Send the video to your prospects
  • Share the video with partner companies that you have

In addition to promoting your video, you can also use the content again!  Upload your video to a tool like otter.ai to create a transcript of it. Use this transcript to create a blog entry on your website and link to the video. This allows you to give information about your business topics to multiple audiences, and it helps with your SEO (search engine optimization).

Start creating your content on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to see your traffic increase and your videos start to rank.

If all of this seems overwhelming and you’d like some help getting started, call IFTS today and ask about our “Beginner’s Video Package” at 412.715.6266.

The Complete Guide to Online Reputation for Small Businesses: How to Grow Your Business, Improve Your SEO & Get Found Online

The sales cycle for most businesses today has more steps because customers are smart and informed.  The more that you can present your company in a positive light to your target market, the more likely they are to buy from you…and not your competition.

This is where your online reputation factors into the equation.

Growing the online reputation of your business positively consists of two main tasks:

  • Reputation Management
  • Reputation Marketing

Reputation Management is the process of soliciting, collecting and supervising online reviews for your business.  This will both build and protect your reputation, ensuring the people that Google you find positive, persuasive content.  It also will help you improve customer experience with the feedback that you receive.

Reputation Marketing highlights and boosts positive online content that customers provide (like reviews).  This may be done through both traditional and digital channels.  Leveraging positive reviews/ratings increases the visibility of a company.  

These two tasks must be done on a regular basis to be competitive and help ensure the future growth of the company.

Why Should Online Reputation Matter to You?

Don’t underestimate the importance of your online reputation!

Small businesses, especially ones that have a local target market, should have a plan in place to grow their reputation positively.  In fact, 82% of local searches are followed with an in-person visit to the store.  Local searchers are definitely using the internet to check out where they want to spend their money before they leave the house.  Any business that lacks an enticing online presence is risking losing business to well-positioned competitors…even if that competitor has a worse product or service.  

Even when you have the best product with the best customer service at unbeatable prices, if you have negative social signals or if your online reputation isn’t great, prospects will be hesitant to give you their time or money.  Consumers are now searching for the best service at the best price.  They are using Google, Facebook, Yelp, Instagram and more to find it.  Social media, search results and online content are allowing buyers to make very informed spending decisions.

“82% of consumers read reviews for local businesses, including 93% of people aged 35-54” (BrightLocal)

When your ideal prospect searches for the type of product or service in your location that you provide, you need to ask yourself two questions:

  1. Does your business show in the search results?
  2. Are you the obvious choice with 5-star reviews and a professional, authoritative online presence?

If the answer to either of the above questions is “No”, then chances are you just lost a customer.

Customers Trust Online Reviews to Guide Their Decisions, But Don’t Just Take Our Word For It…

“Consumers read an average of 10 online reviews before feeling able to trust a local business.” (BrightLocal, Local Consumer Review Survey)

“Businesses ranking in Google’s local positions 1-3 have an average of 47 reviews, while businesses in positions 7-10 have 38 reviews.” (BrightLocal, Google Reviews Study)

“Having a 5-star rating earns a business 39% more clicks from Google local results than having a 1-star rating.” (BrightLocal, Impact of Reviews and Ratings on Click-Through Rates)

Want more clients?  Using the facts above, a well-positioned online reputation can help you grow your business more efficiently than practically any other form of marketing.

What are the Benefits of Online Reputation Management for My Small Business?

Crafting a positive online presence has a multitude of benefits for a small business.  It will establish credibility and authority, which gives your company a competitive advantage over others in your market.  Be the obvious choice for your prospects!  

Want a salesman that works 24/7/365, advertising you as the best in your locale?  This is what a positive online reputation can do for you.  According to BrightLocal, “Review ratings are the biggest driver of clicks in local search engine results”.

Additionally, a great reputation can help with your search engine optimization (SEO).  Online reviews, directories, business profiles and more help your website rank higher.  Thus, exposing you to a new and wider audience.

You now may be asking yourself, “This is great, but how do I start?”

That is what the rest of this guide will cover.

What Should A Small Business Do To Grow Their Online Reputation?

Step 1: Claim, Manage and Optimize Your Business Listings and Online Review Site Accounts

Review sites are vitally important when maintaining your reputation.  This is where consumers go to research companies and products.  One goal for your business should be showing up in Google local results with good reviews.  

Sometimes, people are willing to take their research to the next level.  This is where review sites come in.  For example, did you know that Yelp has over 178 million site visitors monthly?  They are all looking to confirm that they will get what they want from a particular business.

Make review sites work for you.  Build and protect your online reputation by building your review set on multiple sites.  Make sure to respond to every review in a way that is consistent and persuasive to potential customers reading.

Claim your business profiles on all review sites that are pertinent to your business.  Don’t forget any local directories as well!  Complete the profiles and be sure to use keywords and phrases that your target audience may be interested in.  Make sure that your NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) are consistent across all profiles.  For example, don’t use “Road” in one and “Rd” in another.  Pick one usage and apply it across all online properties.  Be sure that your website has the same exact information, as well.

Missing, incomplete or duplicate information in these listings can hurt your business and your SEO!

Some of the top review sites that you may want to consider are:

  • Google My Business
  • Yelp
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Facebook
  • Trip Advisor
  • Foursquare
  • Angie’s List

Step 2: Create and Optimize Your Social Media Profiles

When you are first starting this plan, Googling your business normally results in various social media profiles for the owner and the business being returned.  This is exactly why you should claim and establish your social media profiles.

Social media profiles generally rank highly for personal names and business names.  If you have not done much to establish yourself, this is a great way to control what prospects can see about you.  You have complete power over what your profiles say and the imagery displayed.  

It’s important to claim these profiles as soon as a business is established.  Profile names are first-come, first-serve, so it is possible that someone else could claim your name.  Don’t let your competition block you, or even worse, create a fake profile and pretend to be you.

An active social media presence lets you promote your brand and establish your voice.  Your content will help create relationships with your clients.  It also lets you showcase your thoughts, opinions, interesting articles, reviews and more.

When claiming your profile, be sure to fill everything out in its entirety.  Include your NAP from above, your website, contact information, logo and lots of photos.  People like to see the people behind the business.

Step 3: Solicit and Manage Reviews

Create a process for your business to request online reviews from your customers and make sure that you and your employees follow it every time.  

“76% of consumers that are asked to leave a review go to write one.” (BrightLocal, Local Consumer Review Survey)

Monitor your review profiles for new reviews and be sure to respond to all new feedback.

When you receive a positive review, it is easy to write a response. Thank them for their time and review, use their name, talk about your commitment, let them know that their feedback is important and invite them to take another step with your company.

Receive a negative review?  You need to reply!

“45% of consumers say they are more likely to visit a business that responds to their negative reviews.” (ReviewTrackers, Online Reviews Survey)

Reply to the reviewer using a courteous tone, and apologize for the experience that they had.  Then, offer to discuss the issue offline.  This way, potential clients will see that you care about customer satisfaction and that you tried to make it right – allowing you to flip a negative into a positive.

Step 4: Create a Blog with Consistently-Published, Quality Content

Your online reputation also comes from the authority that you have established.  A blog is a great way to accomplish this.  Blog entries published regularly with proper SEO ensures that the content and images that you create occupies the top search results for your name and business.

Worried about how to start your blog?  

Here is our blog quick-start guide:

  • Set up your blog in WordPress (You can follow this guide if you run into trouble https://www.wpbeginner.com/start-a-wordpress-blog/).
  • Install the free Yoast SEO plugin (https://wordpress.org/plugins/wordpress-seo/).
  • Identify 13 commonly asked questions that you hear from your customers frequently.
  • Answer the questions.  If writing is not your thing, record yourself answering the questions on your phone and use https://otter.ai/ (free tool) to transcribe it.
  • Create one blog entry per question.  
  • SEO each entry with page titles, meta descriptions, tags, URLs, image names etc.
  • Use WordPress’ built in functionality to schedule one of these entries to post every 2 weeks.  This gives you a regularly scheduled post for the next half-year.
  • BONUS: Film yourself reading the blog entry and post the video to YouTube with a link back to the blog.  This will help with authority and SEO.

Step 5: Get Started

You now have everything that you need to begin.  Don’t jeopardize the time, money (and maybe tears) that you have put into your business by neglecting to build and maintain a positive online presence!

Need help getting started or want someone to take over the responsibilities of this task?  Contact IFTS and ask about our ReviewLead free trial.  We make online reputation a stress-free experience for you.