As a search engine, YouTube is big, second to only Google. So are you using this massive search engine to create explosive buzz for your company or product? And do you want to know use it properly? Then let me share these secrets with you from those who’ve done it right.
How to create viral videos for YouTube
Before we jump into actual videos, we need to go back to the basics for a moment. In an interview over at Mixergy James Wedmore breaks it down like this:
- Keyword research – If you want high-quality traffic coming to your YouTube video, then you first need to do the research. Use Google’skeyword tool to hunt down the terms that are trending. This is the same thing you would do if you were running an SEO campaign for your site.
- Create a simple video – Once you’ve done your keyword research, the next step is to create the video. Listen, go simple. This doesn’t have to be an elaborate video with beautiful editing. Make it personal and try to combine the trending topic with what you do. Keep it under four minutes, Once you are finished, upload it to YouTube
- Get the transcript – Once the video is done, pay someone to document the transcript. Save that transcript in txt file and then upload it to YouTube. The reason this is important is because all of your keywords are in that transcript, which then gets indexed by Google.
- Share with bookmarking sites – One way to help the video to go viral is submit the video to OnlyWire or Social Monkee.
- Generate responses and likes – Engage your social media sphere and encourage people to comment and like. The more responses and likes you get, the more Google pushes the video up on the rankings.
- Post video to your blog – After a couple of days, embed the video on your site so that you have a good excuse to share it once again.
Now that you know the basics, here are a few case studies to help you generate ideas for your own videos.
Issue a challenge
Most great videos share some kind of story…and showing how you overcome a particular challenge is a great story to show on video.
For example, Volkswagen wanted to see how many people they could get to take the stairs rather than the steps as part of their Fun Theory campaign. The first part of the video shows a shot of a stairs and the escalator. Almost everybody uses the escalator. After a team of engineers install piano keys on the steps that make sounds when you step on it, the number of people who use the steps jumps dramatically. Over 16.4 million people have viewed this one video.
Create dozens of personalized short videos
You probably know about the Old Spice “the man your man could smell like” commercial, but did you know that Old Spice went back and created 162 more videos in a two day period? The videos addressed everyone from Demi Moore, Kevin Rose and Alyssa Milano to Anonymous, and even some guy who wanted to Isaiah Mustafa to propose for him.
It took about 7 minutes to record each video, so that should give you some indication of how simple it is to make great videos. Here’s a short list of items you need to create a video like one of the Old Spice ones:
- Camera – This is easy. You can use either your iPhone or your laptop.
- Lighting – Cowboy Studio has a set of lights for over just $200 that provides inexpensive options to get lighting that looks natural.
- Microphone – For $100, you can pick up one of the best USB microphones, the Blue Snowball .
By the way, do you know how well this campaign did? The “Old Spice Responses,” or the custom-made video responses to the originals, was likely the fastest-growing online video campaigns of all time, according to Visible Measures.
Inspiring story of struggle and great achievement
Sort of like the challenge video, showing someone doing incredible feats will really make a video go viral.
The Interesting Bicycle video with Danny Macaskill is that it not only shows him doing some amazing feats…but it also shows him failing a couple of times before he masters a particular trick. What you want to do here is to show all the flaws and the struggle behind a great feat that makes a video powerful.
Michelle Phan’s idea was simple: teach women how easy it is to get gorgeous from head to toe with her video beauty tips. It didn’t take long for her to become a YouTube sensation. Total views for one video can range from 550,000 to over 2.5 million.
What’s the secret behind her success? Well, the videos are like candy. You can’t just watch one. Here’s what she does:
- Records the video in common places – One day she could be huddled in her bathroom. The next day she might be sitting on her porch
- Is very playful – People want to see Michelle just as much as they want the video tips because who can resist a pretty woman kissing her cat?
- Brutally honest – She’s not afraid to tell it like it is. If a product turns her skin orange, she’ll let you know.
- She’s authentic – Michelle will tell you she gets samples, but she never endorses anything. That way you know that she’s not putting spin on a product.
I’d like to be able to tell you that by simply following my advice above will guarantee that you’ll create a blockbuster video that creates tremendous buzz for you or your product…but I can’t. You have to be willing to experiment and work hard until you hit on that one thing that people can’t resist.
Can you share any other tactics that can help a video create a lot of buzz?