Using Social Media Video to Your Advantage

Posted by Ashley McChesney

Keeping Up With Social Media Video Changes


Within the last decade or so, new technologies and Internet services have transformed the world into a global community and completely changed the nature of marketing.  According tothis article on Forbes, “Creating or expanding business relationships is not about selling – it’s about establishing trust, rapport, and value creation without selling.”  Customers no longer want to be sold to—they want to be spoken to as peers.  Video hosting websites such as YouTube allow companies to go beyond the traditional expectations for video advertisements.  Rather than pushing a product or service, many companies are transforming their YouTube channels into how-to video blogs, expert news sources, and even entertainment hubs.



Take for example Steve Spangler’s “Sick Science” channel.  Spangler is an author, Emmy winner, and the founder of two companies who attributes a great deal of his successes to the traffic generated from his YouTube channels, on which he performs experiments like this one. Notice that beyond the company name and logo, Spangler does not overtly try to force his brand upon his viewers; rather, he establishes himself as an expert in the field of at-home science experiments.  The simplicity and inventiveness of this video series quickly caught the eyes of many YouTube users, as well as those of the company itself, and in 2011 YouTube offered Spangler one of the hundred available funded channels.


Since Spangler began hosting his online science show in 2007, YouTube has developed a number of new and insightful features that further help individuals and businesses alike to promote their videos to a specific audience.  Features such as annotations and relevant link embedding catch the interest of the audience and call them to action.  Furthermore, it now enables users to distribute their videos across a wide array of social media channels and target watchers using key demographics such as age, location, gender, interests, and many more.


Beyond the simplicity and innovation of YouTube and other video hosting websites, online video advertisements are among the most cost-efficient ways to promote brand awareness.  Uploading and sharing videos through YouTube is entirely free, saving you the cost of purchasing time slots on the air.  Users have the ability to release videos as they please to a relevant audience without spending a dime.


TheNielsen Group has determined that earned media, or content spread through organic means rather than paid advertising, continues to be one of the most powerful tools for today’s advertisers.  The best way to take advantage of this is to host relevant branded videos on a hosting site, targeting your intended audience.  With a great production and the right insights, your followers will share your content amongst their social circles and help you gain a broader audience.