This post concludes our series on using social media to grow your small business, and today we’re looking at the marketing potential of video-sharing giant YouTube, and how your company can build a following there. YouTube is an interesting case, as it’s underutilised for business purposes: while 41% of US small businesses use Facebook, only 9% use YouTube.

But the potential for engagement is considerable: people spend more time on YouTube than any other social media site, and it boasts 1.5 billion users, second only to Facebook. Clearly even small businesses who can do YouTube right will find themselves in a strong position, so we’ve looked at how to go about building your business following there.

Create a strong channel trailer

As with other sites, a complete, informative profile is useful. But YouTube is all about videos, and accordingly this is how you will introduce your business on YouTube. Channel trailers are videos that will play automatically when someone lands on your homepage, so for many it will be the first impression they get of what your brand’s presence here is all about. Use this opportunity wisely to explain who you are, what your channel is for, and what content you’ll be sharing. Don’t forget to ask for a subscription too, but we'll share more on that later.

Check your keywords for Google video results

Your videos will stand a much better chance of being found from Google if the search results for your keywords include videos in the main results, without having to switch from the All tab to the Videos one. If they don’t, try a few different related keywords and see if you can adjust them slightly to get those results. Plan your videos around these valuable keywords for much greater exposure.

Finish on a call to action (CTA)

When filming or otherwise creating (cartoon explainer videos can be a great way to deliver value to your viewers) your videos, be sure to have a goal in mind that you can promote at the end. Whether it’s a product to check out, a longer article to read or just a call to subscribe to your channel for more great content, be specific in what you want people to do now. Putting this at the end of your video keeps you from appearing spammy – it’s common YouTube practice – while leaving viewers clear on what you want them to do next.

Keep video titles short and keyword rich

Once you’ve planned and then filmed a video, pay attention to the title. Staying below 50 characters will ensure it’s not cropped in search results, and including keywords will boost your chances of reaching users browsing the area. Try to explain what your video is about so people know what to expect, while catching their interest as well. Not always easy in 50 characters but worth it if you can!

Post your videos elsewhere

Visual content can spruce up your business’s profile on any medium, and it’s worth sharing your videos more widely than just YouTube. Interestingly, uploading the video through Facebook’s own video uploader will give better engagement than sharing the video. Some users find these shared videos don’t load as well, and there’s even talk that Facebook gives native videos preferential treatment.

Whatever the reason, it pays to use their own uploader when moving videos onto the platform. For other spaces, like your company’s blog, embedding the YouTube video should work fine, and sharing media like this will likely boost post engagement there.

And this concludes our series of posts offering advice on how to boost your online presence on all five major social media platforms. We wish you the best of luck in growing your company’s social media following and its wider success!

About the author

Jake Waller is a wordsmith who plies his trade here at Findmyshift. He uses his background in engineering to simplify complex topics for a variety of tech firms. When not writing for Findmyshift he blogs under a pseudonym at My Name is Skylance and has a passion for creative writing and editing, about which he's always talking on Twitter.