Thursday, October 1, 2015

SMX Liveblog: Being Found on YouTube

SMX Liveblog: Being Found on YouTube was originally published on, home of expert search engine optimization tips.

YouTube is exploding. They reported 60% YOY growth. “Even though TV and YouTube are video, YouTube is its own medium and it has its own rules and norms.”

Moderator: Amy Gesenhues, General Assignment Correspondent, Search Engine Land (@amygesenhues)


  • Yevgeniy Skazovski, Chief Marketing Strategist, FairSquare Inc. (@gene_seomachine)
  • Jeff Martin, Vice President, YouTube Audience Development, Touchstorm (@Jeff_Martin)
  • Dan Piech, Shareablee (@DanPiech)

Gene Skazovski: Be a YouTube Star! 10 Tips for YouTube Video Optimization

YouTube is a wonderland where new brands are born every day. Why be on YouTube?

  • 1 Billion+ users worldwide
  • 2nd most popular search engine
  • Mobile revenue is up 100% YOY
  • 60% growth in Q2 YOY
  • 70% increase in how to videos

More stats that will sell YouTube to your organization: http:/ 

YouTube is an untapped market for small businesses.

youtube statistics slide smx east 2015

YouTube as a brand platform: these are stars who were launched by YouTube

  • Justin Bieber
  • PewDiePie
  • JennaMarbles

The top 100 YouTubers make $100 million a year on YouTube.

How can you be found in the YouTube wonderland?

  1. Video title – give it a good name. Like any other page on the web, 70 characters with a CTA. Use “official”, “new” or alike to bring more attention to videos – DIY, Tips, Video, How-To, For More Info Call, Testimonials, Case Study, Tutorial, Reviews, Free, 60 second video.
  2. Video description – tell me more. 300 words or more with sprinkled keywords. Summarize the content, emphasize important comments or “quotes” from the video, link to pages and resources in the video using absolute URLs, the more detail the better.
  3. Video tags – “This video is relevant to”. Be generous (up to 20) suggestions: brand name, position/title, competitors name.
  4. Closed captioning – it’s more than 508 (compliance). If you’re not doing captioning, then don’t do YouTube.
  5. Backlink to videos – Yes, backlinks. Use relevant anchor text. Allow video embedding if possible. Expand referring sources (share). Link to video from Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and blogs. Promote videos through SEM (
  6. Content quality – that old song again. Create non-boring content up to 203 mintes in length. Understand your customer’s attention span. Slit lengthy videos into multi-part videos. Get to the point quickly. Use :29 and :15 durations for successful video advertising.
  7. Playlists – don’t miss out! If you already have videos, you’re not creating content, you’re making it more engaging and usable.
  8. Natural content – have you read your comments lately? This builds content on the YouTube page. Suggestions for new content come from comments.
  9. Advertise – Hello! Can anyone see/hear you? Probably not. Give your videos a paid push. YouTube Sponsored Search, pre-roll video ads, in-stream ads videos. Use companion banners. Use video remarketing. Bid on competitor names and videos.
  10. Call to Action – Engage videos! Include your phone number or web address. Don’t forget overlays to resources mentioned in videos. Don’t leave out branding!!!

youtube helpful resources quick youtube checklist


Jeff Martin: Millions of Organic Views in 20 Minutes or Less!

Touchstorm is a certified YouTube partner and they know all the guidelines of YouTube.

For a video to maximize its visibility, two factors have to be looked at – meta data and video performance.

Meta Data

Meta data optimization starts with keyword research.

keyword research for youtube


Look at the YouTube Instant suggestions when you start typing in a YouTube search bar. You can see new ideas and roots that you hadn’t thought of based on what people were searching. is a more efficient way to do keyword research. There’s a small fee for using it.

As you refine the keywords, search for those keywords in YouTube. The content that you see, is that what your content would be like or is it different and unrelated?

Once you’re confident in your keywords, look those keywords up in Google Trends YouTube to get a priority for creating the videos.

Optimization – Titles

Use full keyword phrases to optimize early on for channels without a significant subscriber base. If a video’s performance takes off, there is flexibility to adjust later to try to capture more. Optimize the most popular keywords from left to right.

Example of possible titles for the same video. Start with the first one and if the video does well, you can advance to options 2 and 3.

Optimization – Description

optimizing youtube description

What to avoid at risk of having your video removed: Don’t stuff, don’t reference metadata, don’t violate community guidelines. Videos removed seldom ever come back and you’ll have to start over again.

Optimization – Tags


YouTube says to begin tags with long-tail phrases and work down to single-word phrases including brand. You can include adjectives like “quick,” “simple,” and “easy” but it should be a red flag to you if there are more adjectives as tags for your video than others.


Performance – Metrics

Traditional SEO has 2 sides: on-page and off-page. YouTube’s 2 sides are on-page and performance. Views are valuable but not for the number they add up to.

Engagement always lags behind views, so when a user pauses and takes an action, it’s valuable. Video watch time is paramount. It’s the total minutes spent watching a video! It’s not a measure of how much a video was watched, and it’s not a reason why videos need to be shorter.

graph of tag metrics

Session watch time – total minutes a user watches your content AND any other content during a session. You want your content to be part of a very long session. Currently, there’s no effective way to monitor this as it can span into third-party videos.

Watch time takeaways:

  • When completion rates are equal, a shorter video needs more views than a longer video to compete.
  • The longer a video is, the more challenging it is to retain the audience.
  • Review rankings of competing videos in SERPs to understand the length of videos in use and their success.
  • Adhere to YT production best practices to maximize watch time.

Session watch time takeaways:

session watch time takeaways

What software to use to study your performance? is a video marketing suite that provides competitive intelligence, automated YouTube search ranking monitor, in-depth channel analysis and recommendations. He says it’s free!

Dan Piech: YouTube and Branding Stats

youtube video engagement

That’s a lot of videos, views and engagement (likes, dislikes and comments)! People engage on a per view or per post measure much higher on YouTube than on Facebook or Twitter.

Overall, brand view counts only increased 1% last year. However likes increased by 26%, dislikes increased 29% and comments increased 6%. Average views per video have declined because the amount of videos is growing.


IMG_8803 IMG_8804

Sports and recreation videos are doing incredibly in the last year with view counts growing 37% but engagements nearly doubling! And yet, the number of videos posted is smaller than the year previous.

Look at these numbers as they relate to your industry.

How frequently should you be posting? It depends on your industry. And quantity is not more important than quality.



Looking at a specific industry: fashion, you can see that there’s a big difference in the amount of actions these publishers are getting despite posting about the same number of videos.


Look at the Vogue in your own industry to see what you can do similarly.

Case study: Video less than 3 minutes drove 60% of actions for publishers. TV saw 40% of actions from video between 2-4 minutes long. For the average brand, videos 1-4 minutes long drive 50% of likes. Those under 3 minutes drive more views. Shorter videos get more views but positive engagements happen on videos that are a little longer.

How much of my engagement consists of what I value most? Here’s the like-to-dislike ratio by industry:


Publishers capture higher likes per view, showing opportunities for co-branded ad sponsored content.

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