Can Your Small Business Make Money on YouTube?
This week, I read an article by Ben Duchesney about creating a YouTube channel that helps your small business make money. He said: “If you want to make your small business famous – YouTube famous – now is a good time to start.” It sounds so simple. For my other company Meemoeder.com, I have a YouTube channel. Therefore, I can tell you it is not that simple. Can your small business make money on YouTube? In this blog post, I dive into the article and share my experience.
Can your small business make money on YouTube? Current YouTube statistics
According to Brandwatch, YouTube accounts for two-thirds of the premium online video watched across devices among millennials. In an average month, eight out of ten 18-49-year-olds watch YouTube. In 2015, 18-49-year-olds spent 4% less time watching TV while time on YouTube went up 74%. Can you imagine what that is like in 2019? YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine and third most visited site after Google and Facebook. However, only 9% of U.S small businesses use YouTube.
“To bridge the gap and start using video content to your advantage, it is time to get your business on YouTube,” Duchesney says. “Create a channel homepage that reflects your brand, release videos on a routine basis, and listen to your viewers to make your videos better. With the right strategy, YouTube can be a powerful channel to attract new customers, and drive them to make a purchase on your website.”
Showcase your brand consistently
“Before you create a YouTube channel, you need to set a goal,” Duchesney says. “Use YouTube as another marketing channel that contributes to your overall marketing strategy. The focus should be to attract customers and drive them to your business website.
Make your channel homepage match the branding of your website and all other marketing channels. Once you pick a video concept, like an educational series or customer testimonials, stick to that concept, so your audience knows what to expect when they land on your channel.”
Indeed, setting up a YouTube channel only takes a minute. The picking of a video concept might be harder. It requires a well-defined strategy. I don’t agree with his opinion that you should stick to one concept. Yes, you should fully develop the concept – not stop right in the middle and then change to something else – but the beauty of video marketing is that you can use it for so many purposes.
Release videos consistently
Duchesney urges you to release videos consistently. Choose one day of the week (or month) and then release videos on that day every week. My upload day is Wednesday.
Duchesney continues: “If your viewers are watching your video every week, that means potential customers are thinking about your business every week. This gives you a window of opportunity to promote your products or services. Use the same calls-to-action in your videos that you use in your marketing campaigns to drive the message home.”
I want to point out that it is not easy to create a video. It takes a lot of time and effort, even the easiest ones. Do you think writing a blog post every week is hard? Uploading a new video every week is even harder. Therefore, if you already have a problem publishing a blog post consistently, please do not assume that a YouTube channel is something you can do on the side. If you want to use video marketing, you have to commit. If you cannot create videos yourself, hire people who can!
Listen to your viewers
Duchesney claims that YouTube comments are famous for being nasty, but that there still may be useful criticism that can help your videos get better. Plus, he says, “answering comments and having conversations shows the real person behind the business, helping customers build a relationship with you. You may even see some positive feedback that inspires you to keep going.”
Actually, I would like to say that I hardly ever receive nasty comments. Most people bring me constructive feedback that I appreciate very much. My subscribers help me improve my videos. You are probably not releasing music videos or fail videos. You are talking about problems, and you are offering your audience a solution to those problems. That means your audience will probably thank you for that or ask you questions for a better understanding. You are a small business, after all, not an MNE. That gives people a whole different approach to your channel and company.
Can your small business make money on YouTube? Well, do not rely on YouTube for all your revenue
While there are a few millionaires on YouTube, your goal should not be to use YouTube as a source of revenue. As Duchesney says, think of it as an acquisition channel instead. It is another place to showcase your brand. Cross-promote your YouTube videos on your website and showcase them in blog posts. When viewers spend more time with your brand, they see your products more often, and your chance of making a sale increases.
Solely relying on YouTube for your income might disappoint you. Reaching the threshold of YouTube’s partner program is a struggle in itself. How quickly can you reach 4000 watch hours and 1000 subscribers? In fact, you may want to consider alternative platforms.
Can your small business make money on YouTube? Well, these tips might help.
I have written quite a few blog posts about video marketing, which may help you improve your strategy for videos and their success. In Video Marketing Trends the Entrepreneur Should Embrace, you will find some new statistics, so you know how important it is for you to add video to your marketing mix ASAP as well as twelve video marketing trends. In 8 Video Marketing Mistakes the Entrepreneur Should Avoid, you will find common video marketing mistakes. 62 Easy, Valuable Tips to Rock Your Video Content is a popular post that will give you much inspiration.