Video is incredibly popular. Experts estimate that in 2017 and beyond, video will make up 69% of consumer internet traffic.
Back in 2015, consumers spent an average of five-and-a-half hours a day watching video content. That number continues to rise. On Facebook alone, some 500 million users view 8 billion videos on a daily basis.
Video, because people watch so much of it, is useful in book marketing. At the same time, it’s important to keep your videos to approximately 90 seconds. Five percent of viewers will stop watching a video after 1 minute and 60% by 2 minutes.
In 2016, HubSpot, a software and internet marketing company, published a list of statistics about video. I’ll just mention the highlights:
—90% of users say that product videos are helpful when deciding whether to buy something, such as a book
—People recall great video ads, even up to 30 days after seeing them.
—92% of mobile video consumers share videos with others.
—If a consumer enjoys a video, the intent to buy increases.
—Video can improve your website’s SEO and will improve click-through rates.
—Videos increase consumer conversions or purchases.
As if all these facts and findings weren’t sufficient reasons to create videos and post them on YouTube, consider the following significant benefits as well:
—Videos on YouTube tend to be highly ranked, so your video could appear high in Google search results. That’s awesome for SEO (search engine optimization).
—The human connection is important in book sales and videos allow your readers to hear and see you.
—Videos can drive traffic to your website, blog, book landing pages, or Amazon.
—You can use video for your blogging.
—If you write nonfiction, you can create training videos.
—If you write fiction, you can talk about why you wrote your books.
—And let’s not forget that you can be creating a book trailer—which is essentially a video commercial for your book and the link to this can then be promoted on your website, blog, and across all your social media platforms.
How to Get Started on YouTube
Just go to YouTube.com and click the signup link. Sign in with your Gmail account or create one. When you click upload next to the empty avatar, a popup will appear confirming your name. Click Create Channel, and you’re on your way to creating a YouTube account. Remember to use your author name when selecting a name for your channel or YouTube account.
YouTube will then prompt you to upload or drag and drop any videos you’ve created. The default setting is for public viewing. The other options are private, meaning no one else can see them, or unlisted, meaning that you’d have to share the link for other people to see the video.You can also import any videos you may be storing on Google Photos, decide to use YouTube for live streaming, or create videos using a photo slideshow.
When you click the upload button next to your empty avatar—the pink person icon—you’ll navigate to a page where you can add channel art, what I like to call the top banner image, as well as your avatar image.
The channel banner image needs to be 2560 x 1440 pixels, and it can’t be larger than 4 MB. The minimum size for your image is 2048 x 1152 pixels. The maximum avatar size is 200 x 200 pixels, but you can use an image as small as 150 x 150 pixels. YouTube will collect your avatar from your Google account, or you can upload a different one.
Also, add a channel description. The description should state who you are and what you intend to accomplish or provide on YouTube. Start with the most relevant information, remembering that only the first few sentences of your description will be visible without someone having to click a link to read more of it. Your description needs to include keywords in the title. Always include:
- A link to your channel page
- A subscription link
- Links to related content
- Links to social media
Video Creation Tools to Consider
There are a variety of options for creating good video.
Perhaps the easiest and least expensive is to use your use your smartphone or buy an inexpensive video camera. Be sure to get one that allows you to hook up an external mic.
For best results, you’ll also want to steady your recording device with a tripod or selfie stick. The Joby Gorilla pod and Sabrent Flexible Tripod are good options. Selfie sticks can cost as low as $13. For lighting, go outside or record near a window.
Once you create your video, you can upload directly, or you might want to edit it first, in which case you can do this with Microsoft movie maker or the equivalent Mac software, iMovie. Or you can purchase Screencast.
Fiverr.com is another option for low-cost video editing. Your local community college’s audio-visual department may be able to help you out as well.
Finally, you can also place an ad on Craigslist to search for a videographer or video production student or professional.
5 Best Practices
1 - Publish videos on a regular schedule.
2 - Google prioritizes web pages with YouTube embeds, so once you create a video, upload it to YouTube and then embed it in your blog.
3 - Remember to identify 3-5 keywords that you want to use in your description when you upload the video to YouTube. Also be sure to have a URL in the description and on the video that you want people to go to take further action.
4 - Be sure to promote your video as you would any other announcement—across all promotional social media platforms.
5 - Ask people to like your video and subscribe to your channel. The more YouTube sees these activities, the more your video will rise to higher rankings.
Started Now with These 3 Steps
1 - Go to YouTube.com and sign up for an account, called a channel.
2 - Upload your images.
3 - Start creating videos you can upload to your new channel.
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