According to Datareportal’s Global Social Media Statistics, YouTube is the second largest platform after Facebook. That alone makes it well worth including in your marketing plan, but in addition, Datareportal states that “YouTube’s potential advertising reach is 2.515 billion.” Just to repeat, that’s “Billion”. Even if you only get half of one percent of that audience, you’re going to do very well.
But how do you make the most of YouTube and ensure that it keeps generating great leads and aiding your marketing efforts?
Read on for Surefire’s YouTube tips for home services contractors.
Why it’s beneficial to use YouTube
YouTube is owned by Google and it’s the second-largest search engine in the world. You might not think of it as a search engine because it looks like random videos on a platform, but that’s what it is. You can learn just about anything on YouTube and people do use it to search.
Not only that, but when you search on Google’s standard search, for most subjects, you’re going to see YouTube videos come up in the search results. In fact, sometimes, YouTube videos are the top result.
With such high visibility and a large audience, it’s easy to see why you’d want to use YouTube to promote your home services business.
In addition, it doesn’t cost a large amount to get started on the platform. Yes, you can spend a lot of marketing dollars on paid ads and on fancy equipment, but you don’t have to. You can start with just your phone and your own channel and build up from there. There’s a low entry barrier that can get you some great results for a small part of your marketing budget.
Add in the fact that video is a highly popular format and very effective at selling, and you can’t afford to miss out on using YouTube.
Here are just a few statistics from Wyzowl to show you the impact YouTube could have on your marketing:
- “86% of marketers say video has helped them generate leads.”
- “81% of marketers say video has helped them directly increase sales.”
- “88% of people say that they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video.”
And if you want to expand your reach (and you do!), “People are twice as likely to share video content with their friends than any other type of content, including social media posts, blog posts/articles, and product pages.”
Your Home Services Business YouTube Strategy
Now that we’ve (hopefully) convinced you that YouTube is definitely worth your time, we’re going to get into our YouTube tips for home services contractors to show you what you need to do for YouTube success.
Step 1 – Create a YouTube channel for your business
You may already have a personal YouTube account. While your personal account is great for subscribing to what you’re interested in and learning how to do everything, it’s not meant for business use.
What you need is to create a Brand Account and set up a channel. There are advantages to doing this. You get access to analytics, you can have more than one user on the account, and you can add more channels whenever you want to.
To create your Brand Account, first set up a Google account for your business, if you don’t already have one. Hop over to YouTube and set up your YouTube account. Then create your Brand Account. Once you’ve done that, you can set up a channel for your business.
You can find more out on how to do this, and on what a brand account is, on YouTube’s own help pages.
You’ll then want to add in your business information, including your About information, links to your website and social platforms, and your channel header graphics.
Just like with any other platform, it’s important to continue your branding throughout your YouTube channels so that you have a consistent look and feel, whether viewers are on your own website, on YouTube, or on any other social platform.
Step 2 – Learn about your audience (aka your customers)
If you’ve been marketing for a while, you should have buyer personas for your customers, detailing who they are, why they buy from you, what they want, pain points, how they find you, and more. If not, now is the time to create your buyer personas. If you’ve had buyer personas for a while, it’s worth giving them a refresh at this point to ensure what information you have is still relevant.
Deep dive into your current statistics from your website and your social platforms to see what keywords people are using, what search terms they are using to find you, where they came from, and other useful pieces of information.
This research should give you insights into what problems your potential customers are having that you can solve. You can see how they speak, and what terms they are using, and learn how to communicate with them better by doing the same.
Once you have been running your YouTube channel for a few months, you can come back to this by looking at your Analytics tab. You’ll be able to see how people are finding you, check their demographics compared to your original research, and see what they are interested in.
All of this data will be useful later, both for SEO purposes and for ensuring you’re providing the right types of content and the right information for your audience.
Step 3 – Research your competitors
If your competitors are ahead of you on YouTube, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. What that means is that they’ve got useful data you can use to help you build your own YouTube channels.
Take a look at how they present themselves and the quality of their videos. What is the quality like? Are the videos useful? Are they entertaining? How can you do better?
Look at the subjects they are covering. These subjects are likely to be useful for your audience too. Brainstorm your own content ideas from watching theirs.
Take a look at what people are saying in their video comments. This can be a goldmine for keywords and phrases, questions you can answer in your own videos, and content ideas for every part of your marketing.
You can also see what sort of responses your competitors are getting and whether people like what they are offering. This can guide you away from topics that aren’t as popular and help you refine how you want to come across in your own videos.
Check out your competitors’ graphics, descriptions, titles, and other aspects of their channels. You can learn what types of titles and descriptions work best and gain ideas for writing your own.
Finally, look at their statistics. You should be able to see their subscriber count, how often they post, their video quality, and their average views per video.
Now you have something to aim for. Every month, check your own statistics against theirs and see how you’re doing and if you’re catching them up or surpassing them.
Step 4 – Learn from your favorite channels
Don’t just analyze your competitors. Look at the channels that you enjoy outside of work. What attracts you to them and what keeps you watching and coming back? What do they do that you can replicate?
While the topics might be different, you can still learn a lot from popular YouTube channels and your own favorites.
Brainstorm content ideas for your own videos while you do that. You might not come up with new topics while doing this, but you may well find new ways to present that you hadn’t thought of, including special effects, along with how other channels respond to their audiences and more.
Step 5 – Create engaging video content
After such comprehensive research, you should be bursting with ideas for targeted content that your audience will love.
Now it’s time to get creating.
- If you’re not sure how to do any aspect from uploading to editing your videos, check out YouTube’s help pages. https://support.google.com/youtube/?hl=en-GB#topic=9257498 A quick Google search will also find you anything you want to know, such as Screencast-o-Matic’s guide on editing videos for YouTube. https://screencast-o-matic.com/blog/how-to-edit-youtube-videos/
- YouTube Studio https://studio.youtube.com/ is a great app to help you manage your channel. There’s a browser version and it’s available on iOS and Android.
- Sound quality is far more important than video quality on YouTube. People will push through with poor quality videos, but if they can’t hear what you’re saying, they’re more likely to quit watching.
- Don’t worry if you only have your phone camera to create your videos for now. Video quality is now very good on most phones, and you should be able to film your videos without issue. If you find that YouTube is really working to market your business, you can then invest in lighting, professional cameras and microphones, and other equipment later.
- Before you start filming, it’s important to plan what you’re going to say, even if you only do a quick outline. You’ll feel more confident, particularly when you first start filming, if you’re not worried about what to say next.
- Don’t be afraid to play about with special effects if they suit your brand and your business, but at the same time, don’t go overboard with them. You don’t want the effects to be the focus of your videos.
- Ask people to like and subscribe during your videos. It might seem obvious, but it works.
- Use closed captioning so that you’re catering to all audiences, including anyone with a hearing impairment.
- Finish your video off professionally with a custom end screen. You can add text to this to guide people to other videos and keep their interest for longer.
Finally, YouTube may be a search engine, but it’s also a social platform, just as much as Facebook is. People will comment on your videos, and you should respond, even if you only like their comments. You can create a real community and a lot of engagement if you take the time to reply to people.
Step 6 – Optimize your videos when uploading
We mentioned that YouTube is a search engine. You want to get found and get attention from your ideal potential customers and that means that you need SEO when creating and posting your videos.
From your research, you should have a good idea about what keywords to use. As with SEO for any other type of content, don’t overdo it, but you should include them in your video titles and descriptions. Try to include your main keyword within the first three sentences of your description.
You can also add tags that can help you get found. Hashtags will also get attention, especially if you can link any of your videos to trending topics and hashtags.
It also helps if you say your keywords in your videos as it helps YouTube to figure out what your videos are about.
Just as you would for other content, don’t forget to include links to your services in your descriptions, links to your other social accounts, and a link to your website.
You also need a clear call to action. What do you want your audience to do next?
Make sure your thumbnails are customized too, and not just a screenshot from your videos. If you let YouTube choose your thumbnails, you may find you have a very odd expression in them, or you may be standing up and trying to adjust the camera. Neither scream “watch this now”, nor are they professional.
What you need to do is to create a thumbnail, including text that tells your audience what the video is about. Include your brand colors and fonts to make it fit your branding too.
Step 7 – Optimize your channel
You should have already set up branded graphics for your channel, but you can optimize it for maximum impact.
Ensure that everything, from your logo to your cover photo reflects your branding. It should be obvious when someone visits your channel that it belongs to your business, and it should be consistent with your branding across other platforms too.
You can also create a short video, called a channel trailer, that explains what your channel is about. Get this one right because it could be the first impression people have of you and of what they can expect when they watch.
Help your audience out by organizing your content into playlists. This lets them find what they’re looking for more easily, but it also benefits you by giving them even more videos on the topic they’re searching for. They’re then likely to stick around and continue watching, just like they would on Netflix or Disney Plus.
Step 8 – Share your YouTube videos on other platforms
Don’t keep your videos just on YouTube. Share them on your other social media platforms to get people to watch, drive traffic, and maximize your reach. You also get content for your other social platforms without having to create anything else.
Embedded YouTube videos also keep people on your website longer, which lowers your bounce rate.
Think about how you can repurpose your videos to create even more content.
You can create preview videos to entice people back to YouTube to watch the full video, or if suitable, you may be able to create graphics, memes, and GIFs from screen captures to get even more content out of just one video.
You could also strip the sound and use the audio for a podcast, create a transcript that you could edit for a blog post, and so much more.
How can you repurpose your content to get far more out of it?
Now you’ve gone through our YouTube tips for home services contractors, we hope you can see just how much YouTube can add to your marketing.
It is a lot of work to market your own home services business, but the effort is worth it when you have a constant stream of highly-qualified leads to keep your business growing.
Surefire Local can also make your life easier with our all-in-one marketing software to help you manage every aspect of your marketing.
Manage your email marketing, your reviews, social media, business directories, and more in one place.
And you can plan your content and track your content ideas in our easy-to-use dashboard, get reports and statistics on how you are doing, and do it all from anywhere with just one log-in.
Why not schedule a demo of Surefire Local’s business intelligence marketing software to make online marketing easy and attract new customers?