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Businesses that hesitate will be lost as their competitors take off

John Vuong was calming down after a whirlwind. Just days before, his company, Local SEO Search, launched its own YouTube channel. It’s a major step toward building influence in search engine optimization.

“We’ve got two videos up and have a lot planned,” Vuong said. “I’m super excited to share my favorite tips on entrepreneurship and SEO.”

Local SEO Search is part of a growing trend of small and medium-sized businesses creating YouTube channels to promote their products.

Entrepreneurs Ivana Taylor and Iva Ignjatovic have either created or drawn from YouTube content, staying ahead of developments in their industries.


Humanize Yourself and Connect to Your Audience

Technology aside, showing the real you resonates with viewers

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Taylor owns DIYMarketers, “committed to helping small business owners get out of overwhelm.” Ignjatovic is a marketing, strategy and business consultant. Together they talked with Vuong, a professional speaker, business coach and mentor.

“Being a business owner isn’t easy, but with the right skills and mindset, you can be a success,” Vuong said. “That’s where I come in. I thrive on helping business owners be their absolute best.”

That best now includes mastering YouTube both as a creator and consumer.

“I watch YouTube videos daily,” Vuong said. “Who needs TV when you can find channels you love? There are channels I follow, but the educational aspect of YouTube is definitely my favorite. You can learn anything on YouTube.

“When searching, try sorting your results by this month or this year,” he said. “This generally helps to filter out the more popular but out-of-date results.”

Taylor watches and listens to YouTube videos every day. She is far from alone.

Going Beyond Traditional

Pew Research Center reports that YouTube is the most widely used social platform among U.S. adults, with 73 percent holding an active presence on the app. That is higher than other “traditional” social networks.

“I mostly listen to music,” Ignjatovic said. “When I watch, some of it is business-related, but mostly it’s something light and entertaining — like animal videos.”

For diversion, YouTube has never-ending human-interest content.

“Relationship building is a huge part of any business,” Vuong said. “Video can really show your personality. That’s what clients connect to. They want to know you. Video allows you to really portray that, especially in rough times.”


Video magic will keep you more engaged, memorable and popular

A clear vision leads the way to profits

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Portraying others related to your business is equally important.

“I’ve used video interviews in my content most often,” Taylor said. “Now, I’m considering doing video tutorials and presentations.”

Those seeking business content, comfort, tutorials and more can have a shopping spree.

“Educational content is a huge part of YouTube,” Vuong said. “I love watching business content and hearing stories from other business owners and entrepreneurs.”

In many cases, the younger, tech-savvy generations lead the way.

“My 21-year-old can watch YouTube for entertainment,” Taylor said. “I tend to watch for demos, tutorials, speakers and so on.”

About 60 percent of business-to-business decision makers use YouTube to research purchases, according to The Small Business Blog.

“With more than 100 million people watching YouTube videos, you’ll find everything,” Ignjatovic said. “People want information, entertainment and education.”

Anyone Can Play

Seemingly anyone with ambition can post on YouTube. With the rise of mobile phones, you can watch video anytime and anywhere with cell tower coverage. Starlinks are next.

“YouTube is a search engine,” Taylor said. “This inspires businesses to create more how-to content to help people solve anything from how to tie a tie to unclog a sink. The videos are super useful.”

DIYMarketers has posted an article with video marketing tips for small businesses.

“YouTube has shifted the focus from production quality to convenience,” Ignjatovic said. “We’ve learned that people want answers, not just production value.”

Several business accounts on YouTube are unique and worth viewers’ time.

“My favorite accounts are Jarvis and Surfer,” Taylor said. “I find their content outstanding and educational.”


Video injects pizzazz to marketing

Entrepreneurs have an edge when they know what they want

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YouTube itself states that more than 70 percent of its content is watched on mobile devices.

For great content about life and business topics, Ignjatovic recommends these YouTubers:

These are only a few instances of how great YouTube videos inspire others.

The magic formula for small-business success on YouTube is stirred by consumers.

“It all depends on what your ideal customers want to see,” Vuong said. “Reach out to them and ask. Listen to your comments. Be ready to pivot and keep it personal. YouTube is a great way to get your personality across and provide rich content to your clients.”

Respond to Concerns

Listen outward rather than inward.

The most important thing is answering the questions your customers care more about,” Taylor said. “Provide the best how-to content.”

Being different is a must to stand apart from others.

“A good business YouTube channel has a unique point of view,” Ignjatovic said. “A lot of people underestimate the power of writing great descriptions and optimizing.”


For SEO, the words are key

Capitalize by knowing the basics of search engine optimization

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Producing videos gives businesses an air of authority. The thinking is if they can put something on video, they must know what they’re talking about. Search engines seem to agree.

“Videos will rank above written content on Google,” Taylor said. “It pays to create helpful, informative content to drive traffic to your site.”

Think with Google backs that up: 33 percent of baby boomers use YouTube to learn more about a product or service.

“Video gives you the opportunity to ‘show and tell’ your product or service, demonstrate, make comparisons and teach people how to use what you offer,” Ignjatovic said.

One small-business mistake is not even trying YouTube. You play with one hand tied behind your back when you pass on video.

“Those business owners are too afraid to post on YouTube,” Vuong said. “They think they need to have this large production and high quality. But as long as you have a smartphone, you have a video camera in your pocket.”

Accept a Gradual Process

Being dismissive is another self-inflicted wound.

“The biggest mistake businesses make on YouTube is thinking that it won’t help their business or brand,” Taylor said.

“It takes a while to find your unique point of view,” she said. “As a test, you could record your stories on YouTube for those of us who like to listen at night.”

Instant gratification plagues the corporate world as well as individuals.

“Businesses want an instant solution,” Ignjatovic said. “They give up when they don’t see results.”


Fail Fast, Fail Often and Win

Your intent and dedication will determine your success

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A successful YouTube channel capitalizes on a niche with memorable personalities and good production values. Pictures mostly stay in focus.

“Top YouTube channels have a specific point of view and stick to it,” Taylor said. “Viewers know where to go to get a specific type of content.”

Ignjatovic added that great titles and detailed descriptions are necessary for a successful channel.

Marketing products or services through YouTube videos is not a carefree endeavor.

“The №1 challenge is deciding on a unique point of view and being consistent,” Taylor said. “Then you need to write good descriptions and build an audience.”

Whether on YouTube or elsewhere, marketing fundamentals prevail.

“Like anything else, you have to have a plan, set goals, measure and optimize,” Ignjatovic said. “Businesses often skip these steps.”

About The Author

Jim Katzaman is a manager at Largo Financial Services and worked in public affairs for the Air Force and federal government. You can connect with him on TwitterFacebook and LinkedIn.

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Jim Katzaman
Jim Katzaman is a manager at Largo Financial Services. A writer by trade, he graduated from Lebanon Valley College, Pennsylvania, with a Bachelor of Arts in English. He enlisted in the Air Force and served for 25 years in public affairs – better known in the civilian world as public relations. He also earned an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science in Public Affairs. Since retiring, he has been a consultant and in the federal General Service as a public affairs specialist. He also acquired life and health insurance licenses, which resulted in his present affiliation with Largo Financial Services. In addition to expertise in financial affairs, he gathers the majority of his story content from Twitter chats. This has led him to publish about a wide range of topics such as social media, marketing, sexual harassment, workplace trends, productivity and financial management. Medium has named him a top writer in social media.

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