Did you know that YouTube is not just a social media platform, but is also the world’s second-largest search engine? When you generate content for your website, or create posts on social media, you likely feel concerned about visibility: Will Google rank your website? Will your posts get shared on Facebook?  Those are good questions but don’t overlook the power of YouTube.

Video content has become an essential component of any well-rounded digital marketing strategy. But are your videos gaining any traction on YouTube? If not, you’re missing a big opportunity. As you create video content, consider the following four factors to boost your visibility.

1. Ask: What type of YouTube videos work best?

You might hear people joke that they consulted “YouTube University” for help with a project. Indeed, some of the most common searches on the platform begin with the words, “how to”. Users consult the site on topics such as

  • “How to get red wine out of the carpet”
  • “How to change a flat tire”
  • “How to hit a golf ball straight”
  • “How to train my dog”

Business owners should create concise, helpful videos on a number of “how to” topics related to their industry.

Remember: Once you’ve created these videos, they belong to you (not YouTube). You can use them on your website, post them on social media, embed them in blog posts, or even send them within emails or texts.

2. Know your demographic: Who should you target on YouTube?

People of all ages use YouTube, but consider this fact: In an average week, YouTube reaches more US consumers aged 18-49 than all TV networks combined. And the trend just continues to grow; YouTube viewership is up 39 percent over just one year ago.

Clearly, if you want to target that age group, YouTube is essential to your digital marketing campaign.

3. Consider length: How long should YouTube videos be?

Generally speaking, content is more important than length. If you tell a good story, have an engaging personality, and can hold the viewer’s interest, people will watch your videos. Your viewers want the information you’re providing.

Having said that, you obviously want to avoid lengthy delays, repeating information, and unnecessary tangents. Keep your videos concise and to the point.

4. Engage your viewers: Don’t sell!

Focus on providing the information your viewers want, and demonstrating your expertise in the subject matter. You can include a brief call to action at the end of your video, and include a link to your company website in the description section, but your presentation should never feel like a sales pitch. If you provide the content your viewers want to watch, they will return over and over, and will even share your videos with friends.