What You Can Learn About Video Marketing From Top Global Brands

The video marketing experts at Pixability recently completed a study of what makes video marketing successful. They analyzed the YouTube efforts of the companies making up Interbrand’s Best Global 100 Brands* from 2012 to see what can be learned from their use of YouTube as a marketing platform. Collectively, these 100 companies account for 9.5 billion YouTube views and a surprising 258,000 video uploads.

What did they find?

  • Almost every brand in the top 100 is active on YouTube. The only brand in the top 100 that does not maintain a YouTube channel is Morgan Stanley.
  • The brands that are most successful at video marketing produce a wide range of video content, targeting different audiences with videos that differ in length, style, and production values.
  • Videos have a long tail, and can find significant audiences months after being posted.
  • Channel proliferation isn’t helping. More videos per channel are more likely to lead to success than more channels. Also, quite a few brands start and then abandon channels. Don’t start a channel if you aren’t committed to supporting it over time.
  • Over half the videos produced have fewer than 1,000 views. While a great deal of effort is being invested in video production, many videos are not reaching their intended audiences in expected numbers because many brands fail to effectively market the videos they produce.

Some best practices in video marketing

So, how do you effectively market the videos you post on YouTube?

  • Post video content consistently and in volume. Quantity counts.
  • Optimize your videos and channels for YouTube SEO, which differs from standard SEO.
  • Integrate your online video efforts with your other on- and offline marketing efforts, especially your other social media efforts.
  • Don’t forget to brand your video in metadata, as well as in the video content itself. And remember that your videos may appear outside your YouTube channel, embedded in another website.

Financial services companies on YouTube

Twelve of the top 100 global brands are financial services companies.** As a group, they don’t produce as many videos and don’t get as many views as the top brands from other industries, which is not surprising. But several are doing excellent work.

The best work is from American Express, which does a beautiful job of conveying brand values on YouTube. They have just three channels, but each is on message, internally consistent, and in concert with their messaging in other on-and offline channels.

Here are a few additional observations:

  • Don’t be afraid to produce content for small but highly important – and likely, highly engaged –audiences.
  • If you sponsor a music series, a rugby tournament or a cycling team, by all means build a channel around it. It’s a great way for companies to gain experience, and for your compliance team to gain comfort, if you are just starting out.
  • I applaud the financial services companies that allow viewers to post comments. I won’t name names here, but I will suggest you not do it if you’re going to forget to moderate the posts.
  • Don’t even think about trying to go viral. It’s not going to happen.

You can download the full report from Pixability from here: http://j.mp/14kuIHf

*     Find Interbrand’s full report here: http://j.mp/PC6Yn4

**   They are: Allianz, American Express, AXA, Citi, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, J.P. Morgan Chase, Mastercard, Morgan Stanley, Santander, and Visa.