Sometimes I have a vision of the Internet that looks something like a billion people all waving their arms andshouting “HEY! LOOK AT ME!” while trying to attract the attention of everyone else. Then they complain if no one looks.
The Internet and marketing don’t just go hand-in-hand. They’re practically the same thing. Anyone who has an online presence wants more readers, more followers, and more influence over global conversations. Even if they aren’t trying to make money off the Internet, they’re still using it to push themselves, make connections, and become bigger online players.
Those who are good at this game know one simple truth about the Internet: Because everything is inter-connected, those who get themselves noticed in as many different areas as possible is going to win the popularity game.
So, if you’re trying to market yourself with online video, you need to be looking to get those videos in front of as many people as possible, in as many different online realms as possible. You can’t stick with YouTube alone. You need to be spreading your YouTube videos around, and Facebook is a great vehicle for it.
The YouTube-Facebook Connection
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Why is Facebook so good for videos, especially YouTube? It’s actually built into Facebook’s DNA, as a matter of fact!
Facebook has a secretive algorithm called EdgeRank which determines how likely any given Facebook post is to show up on the front page of someone following that Facebook user. While Facebook keeps it proprietary, one thing we do know is that Facebook ranks imagery – pictures and video – more highly than other types of content.
A video you put on Facebook honestly has a better chance of being seen by your audience than just about anything else you can post. Plus, in turn, people sharing that video are going to have an excellent chance of putting it in front of more users.
Using Facebook as a tool for your video marketing simply makes sense, and gets you a lot of buzz for your buck.
Squeezing the Most YouTube Juice Out of Facebook
While, of course, having a hit viral video is still mostly a matter of luck, there are still some things you can do to increase your chances of “going viral” and hitting the big leagues. Just as a reminder, here’s a list of some of the top viral videos of the summer. Watch a few, and see what you learn.
(Besides, I just quite successfully procrastinated for a few minutes by rewatching a bunch of them, so go ahead and have a little fun!)
Here are a few tips to help you get those shares:
- Keep it short. The longest video on that list is only a bit over five minutes, and several are under thirty seconds. Can you think of a message you can package alongside a ten-second sight gag? You might have a winner.
- Be funny. The vast majority of popular online videos are humorous or surprising in a fun way. Practically the only exceptions involve legitimate tragedies or politics.
- Be a universalist. Well-shared videos are also pretty universal in their appeal: free of underlying social biases, not relying on any particular cultural values or language, and generally accessible to anyone. Whether someone is in Philadelphia or Phnom Penh, cute kittens are cute. (If you want to waste a bit more time in the name of business research, take a look at the popular Muppets’ YouTube channel and notice how they rely mostly on well-known music and non-speaking Muppets to broaden their appeal.)
- Make sharing easy. Your YouTube channel and your videos should be pretty well covered in buttons to easily share the video. Ideally, sharing your content and “liking” you should only be one click away.
What other tricks have you seen that seem to help a Facebook video go viral? Share your tips with the world!