When was the last time you watched a video on YouTube? Last week? Yesterday? This morning? Right before reading this blog? YouTube is the second largest search engine and third largest social media network in the world. Is your health system running ads on YouTube? Does your hospital have a robust (and engaging) video library available there? If not, you’re likely missing out.
According to Brandwatch, YouTube has over 1.9 billion (with a “b”!) logged-in monthly users. In an average month, eight out of ten 18-49 year olds watch YouTube; while roughly 50% of baby boomers visit YouTube monthly. And 400 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute! That’s a staggering amount of content!
YouTube is easy to use, amazingly easy to target (geography, demographics, interests, search behaviors) and incredibly affordable. If your health system or hospital is not yet utilizing YouTube, you should consider moving in that direction. Here are insights and tips gleaned from Healthcare Success to help you do so:
- Size does matter: there are dozens of other video-sharing sites similar to YouTube and you may want to use more than one of them. But since YouTube is the 800-pound gorilla, begin with the best-known names first to generate the widest audience exposure and search engine visibility.
- It’s your second website: using the YouTube platform, and creating your own YouTube Channel, provides an additional location for your audience to find you. And two sites are more visible to search engines and can help boost business and your page ranking.
- It’s an engaging social medium – audiovisual content, more so than conversational or text media (such as Twitter), is engaging, even entertaining…and a different means to communicate and develop relationships.
- Promote and Cross-Promote! You don’t want to be overlooked in a crowd of millions of videos. Your website should link to your YouTube Channel, your Twitter stream should point to YouTube, your YouTube videos can be used on Facebook, and so on. Have a promotional strategy that includes promoting and cross promoting all of your public faces. Integrating all of your online efforts has synergistic power for greater effectiveness.
- Keep content brief, compelling and fresh – viewers want interesting information presented quickly, so stay on-point, engage the viewer with compelling material. (Slice a long video into shorter segments if needed.) Interesting material will inspire feedback and sharing. If it’s boring, don’t use it.
- Not everything goes “viral” – and going viral is not the norm. Set your expectations on consistently presenting quality content that is memorable and valuable to your primary audience, inspires a conversation and engages the visitor.
- Listen to channel chatter – provocative and timely material can inspire feedback from YouTube channel visitors, and it’s important to listen to what’s being said about the topic and/or about the provider. That’s helpful dialog and direction for what you might want to add or change.
With nearly two billion monthly users, the “fish” are definitely YouTube-ing. So fish where the fish are.