If you’re a business owner and you don’t have a YouTube channel, why don’t you have a YouTube channel for your business? What’s holding you back? Did you know that YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google and that Google owns YouTube? That’s a lot of search volume that your business could be tapping in to.
YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine and in 2019 there were about 2 billion active users on YouTube every month*. YouTube also doesn’t charge for business accounts, so yes, you should create a YouTube account for your business and start reaching new customers.
Businesses of all sizes have seen increased growth due to being on YouTube. If you have a product or service that you sell, the chances are that you will also be able to reach new customers that otherwise might not get to hear about your business.
How Can YouTube Help My Business?
Studies have shown that video is far more engaging than just using text*. Using YouTube’s free video platform allows your business to promote and demonstrate the use of products. Videos on YouTube can easily be shared with customers, but they can also be embedded into your own business website to help increase your reach.
What Type of Content Should a Business Create on YouTube?
Starting and building a channel on YouTube will take some time and require some understanding of how powerful the platform can be. The type of content you can create is unlimited. It’s up to you how creative you want to become and also the image you want to create of your business.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- How-to video (make a coffee or use the product)
- Example of a service you offer (so people can relate to your brand)
- Show how it’s made (demonstrates time taken and quality of a product)
- Using a product, you make (give ideas on uses, inspire your customers)
- Vlog-style video showing a day in the life of your business (helps your audience feel connected)
- Interviews with staff (how they help customers, also help customers relate to your business)
- In-house or launch event (help your customers feel part of your business)
- FAQs (explain how your business works or solve simple problems for your customers)
Why Would a Business Use YouTube?
Having a YouTube channel for your business is a chance to be one step ahead of your competitors and embrace the power of video to engage with your customers more. Being on camera isn’t for everyone, but it’s a way to reach customers that other social media can’t.
YouTube is a search engine, so your business could come up in the results of any search related to one of your videos. If you can help someone with a problem they have or entertain them, you are more likely to win their business than your competitors, as they will have started to create a connection with you from your videos.
No other social media platform is a search engine, so unless a customer is specifically searching for your business on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, they might never come across it.
Social media like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter do have some search capabilities, but they are limited to your company name and hashtags you use in your posts. They do not answer questions that people are looking for solutions to. (For example, on YouTube someone might search “How do I unblock my sink?” and your plumbing business might pop up in the results if you have a video on how to unblock a sink. However, the same search would not yield any results on another platform.)
How Do I Setup a YouTube for My Business?
Setting up a business account on YouTube is just as simple as setting up a personal account. For this you will need a Google account and a few minutes of your time.
You’ll be best off having your business account as a brand account. This will help keep your business activity separate from any personal accounts you have. With a brand account you will also be able to assign others to help with the content on your behalf which you can’t do with a personal account.
You can find out more about this in Google’s help section here: https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/1646861?hl=en-GB&ref_topic=9267674
Is YouTube Free for Businesses?
If you’re concerned about the cost of having a YouTube channel for your business, you might be surprised to hear that YouTube offers free unlimited hosting of videos for both personal and business use.
The only limit currently in place is that the video can only be up to 12 hours long or 128GB, whichever is the lesser for verified accounts. Until you verify your account, you will be limited to videos up to 15 minutes long.
The only cost you will need to consider is the gear you need to record the video and edit it before you upload the video.
What Gear do I need to Start a Channel?
To start a channel on YouTube you just need an idea and a smartphone. Check out my post on starting a YouTube channel with a smartphone.
Most modern smartphones will allow you to record up to 4K video, edit the video and also upload directly to YouTube. All you need to do is focus on the content you want to create.
If you are using a smartphone to record your videos and want to upgrade the quality, the best things you can do is invest in a quality microphone (check out our section on Microphones) and some additional lighting to help increase the quality of the image you are capturing.
YouTube for Small Business
A small business is just like any other business when it comes to starting a channel on YouTube. The reason for having a YouTube channel is to help your small business reach new customers.
A YouTube channel can help you reach customers who have never heard of your business through videos that answer questions and demonstrate products, because of the way the YouTube search engine works.
We have a course on starting a YouTube channel and starting a vlog. Inside the course you can ask for feedback or for further help on a specific area. By being a subscriber to the course you will also be given access to a private group where you can connect with other creators.
Do I Need to Post Every Week?
One of the things you will hear about when you start to research for your new channel is that consistency is key on YouTube. Many successful YouTubers say that you need to upload at least one video a week in order to grow an audience.
As a business you might have to prioritise your time and focus on other areas of the business and you might not be able to commit to releasing a new video every week, but creating content consistently is important, as it will keep your customers up-to-date with what is happening in your business and over time you will build a stronger relationship with them through having been reliable and consistent.
A mentor of mine always says: “prepare to start messy, but make sure you start”. Many of the large YouTubers you see didn’t start out making perfect videos on their channels, but they carried on anyway and improved that little bit with each video they created.
Do I Need a Studio to Make Videos?
The short answer is no you don’t need a studio. You can start making great content in your office or even at home if you have the space. All you need to be able to do is put your camera on a tripod and hit record.
However, you could set up a simple home studio in the spare bedroom or study, where you set up and break down your gear each time you record. This can help you get into the right frame of mind if you find your living space too noisy or cluttered to record there.
Do I Need to Make Videos About the Same Stuff?
As the content you are creating will be about your business, then this shouldn’t be an issue. However, if your business makes widgets and you do a cooking video on your channel about making a chocolate cake, it’s not really what your audience will be looking for and you will confuse them. Unless you’re making chocolate cake out of your widgets.
Rather than confuse your subscribers and the YouTube algorithm, you should stick to making videos about your business. That doesn’t mean your videos will all have the same format though.
You can create a tour of your premises showing how widgets are made, demos showing how to use widgets, taking the widget on holiday and showing how your widget works in interesting locations. Keep the focus on your product or service, as this is what will keep your audience coming back for more and YouTube serving your videos to the right potential new customers.
Should I Start a Fresh Channel or Can I Use an Existing One?
You might be tempted to take an existing channel and start creating content for your business on there, but if the subscribers you already have on that channel don’t have any interest in the new content, they will stop watching. This sends a signal to YouTube that your viewers are not interested in your content anymore and therefore will actually harm your chances of increasing engagement.
Even if you have a business channel that you tried to start and then gave up on, rather than try to revive it, the best thing is to start fresh.
In conclusion, you don’t need expensive gear to start a YouTube channel for your business and you could really help your business grow. With just a smartphone and an idea, you can be up and running on YouTube within hours.
Need help getting started? Download our quickstart guide to vlogging.
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