So you made a YouTube video as part of your online marketing strategy. And it’s perfect! It’s a well thought-out, professionally-produced piece that does everything it’s supposed to – drive traffic to your site, increase sales, position you as an expert… Or does it? How can you tell if your video really is having the impact you intend?
Once you get that video posted, and you’ve shared it with the world, you’d think that you’d be done, right? That you could just sit back and wait for the kudos to roll in. Well, not so fast, there, buddy! You’ve only completed step one. Step two is to track your video’s performance, so that you can use that information to tweak your current video, or to improve on it by making a new one.
So how do you track your video’s results? And what do you do with that information once you’ve got it? Here’s your guide to using YouTube Analytics to get the biggest bang out of your video.
1. Track your video’s views.
The very first thing you should take a look at is the number of views your video has gotten. That total will give you a good basic idea of how well your efforts at publicizing it are working, but you’ll want to delve much deeper than that to really get a thorough understanding of who is watching. Break down your viewers by gender, age, and location. You can even see when they watched your video – was it during work or in their free time in the evening? All of these details will give you vital insight into the people you’re reaching – and the ones you aren’t. Now, take this information and put it to good use: Fine tune your next video to ensure that it attracts the demographic groups you’re targeting.
2. Track the sources of your traffic.
Once you know how viewers found your video, you’ll know where to promote it most effectively. There’s no point in going all out sharing it on Facebook if people are really only clicking over to it from LinkedIn. And if it turns out that most people are finding it through a YouTube search, you’ll know you need to optimize future videos for search. YouTube will also let you see the keywords used to search for your video, so you’ll have a better grasp of what people are looking for.
3. Track your viewers’ engagement.
Okay, so you got a bunch of views. Great! But what you really, really want (sorry, Spice Girls) is not just passive viewing, but active engagement. You’ve got to get people talking, sharing, and liking for your video to be a resounding success at connecting with your customers. YouTube Analytics allows you to see how many subscribers you have, how many likes and dislikes, how many people gave your video a “Favorites” tag, how many comments it received, and how many people shared it on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. Once you have that information in hand, you can tweak future videos accordingly, to encourage even more engagement.
4. Track your audience retention.
Your video may have a million views…but if each person stopped watching after just a few seconds, then they didn’t really get anything from it. Track how long each viewer actually watched your video, to see if you need to do more to keep their interest throughout the entire thing. YouTube Analytics will let you track this on a second-to-second basis, so you can see exactly where interest peters out, and what you need to make stronger.
5. Track conversions.
This metric will have to be tracked on your own website, not through YouTube Analytics. But it’s just as important as anything else – if not more so – so don’t skip this step! Depending on what type of response you wanted from your video, judge whether it’s been effective. Has it driven traffic to your site? Have your sales gone up? Based on your results, you’ll know what to keep, and what to change, in your next YouTube video.
Do you have any YouTube experiences you’d like to share? Marketing videos you just couldn’t get enough of? What about the videos you absolutely couldn’t stand? What would you have changed about them? Give us the dish in the comments section below!