YouTube is an incredibly powerful marketing tool, even though navigating it can sometimes be difficult. It’s a bit like chess, but with computer algorithms involved.
To make sure your content is performing well, you need a strategy in place that plays to YouTube’s unique strengths and powers up your content in meaningful ways. But with so much information out there, how do you know what matters?
Studying how your viewers engage with your videos is a solid place to start! If you know how to use it, YouTube Analytics data makes it easy to see exactly how your videos are performing. Moreover, it can help you figure out what you’re doing wrong and what you can do to improve it — just like the pros in the video industry do.
So, in this article, we’ve assembled ten vital data points to consider if you want to transform your YouTube marketing strategy into a well-oiled machine and explore how you can use these data points effectively.
Let’s dive in.
10 Key Data Points that Can Transform Your YouTube Marketing Strategy
Marketers of all kinds use YouTube, from individuals hoping to grow their brand to companies trying to reach a wider audience. But the marketing game on YouTube is always changing, which is why you must assess the key metrics to improve your video marketing strategy.
Here are some of the most important ones you’ll want to start paying attention to:
1. Audience Demographics:
YouTube’s audience is remarkably diverse — with users spanning all different ages, races, backgrounds, and interests. Therefore, considering who your target audience is and how to reach them is key to an effective strategy.
A good way to do so and identify their behaviors, interests, and habits is through YouTube’s Find My Audience tool. Other than this, you’ll have to do a bit of research to identify your target age and geographical location (amongst other things) in your channel’s analytics reports.
Once you know who the bulk of your audience is from a demographic standpoint, you start focusing on creating content that’s going to resonate with them on a personal level and help you meet your goals.
2. Playback Location:
The playback location report in YouTube Analytics lets you see which pages and apps played your video. You can use this report to answer questions like:
- Where are my viewers watching my content?
- Which sites reproducing my content have the highest number of plays?
- How are my videos performing on other sites?
These answers can help you streamline your presence in high-performing locations. For example, if most of your views are coming from a specific website, you can consider reaching out to that website and building stronger relationships with them. That way, you can keep sharing your videos on their page and drive more of their audience to your online presence.
3. Audience Retention:
The audience retention metric shows you what percentage of viewers made it through a certain portion of your video, which can be a good indicator of how engaging your content is.
Analyzing your content’s retention can help you see what parts of your video hold people’s attention and where they click away — giving you insights into which areas you need to improve.
For example, if your viewers click away after watching half of your whiteboard animation’s intro, maybe your intro is too long. If most of your audience leaves before the midpoint of your video tutorial, you need to ensure you are front loading your key takeaways. If you fail to tailor your content that way, your videos won’t deliver the results you are after.
As a bonus, audience retention also helps Google know whether people like your content, which means it can affect your ranking in search results. A huge metric to pay attention to.
4. Average View Duration:
The average view duration helps you measure your ability to engage your viewers on a video-by-video basis. You can calculate it by dividing your video’s total Watch Time by the total number of plays on the piece.
This gives you a better picture of how successful an individual video is. On average, YouTube’s view duration is anywhere between 50-60%, so aim for at least that percentile or higher!
Plus, if you have a high average view duration, YouTube will also boost your search and recommendation rankings as well — it’s a win-win situation from a strategic standpoint!
5. Average Percentage Viewed:
With Average Percentage Viewed, you can see how much of your content your audience has watched on average —and how much they’ve decided not to watch. Needless to say, the more that your audience watches, the higher your APV will be.
This metric is especially important when it comes to rankings and YouTube’s algorithm. If you have a high APV, you have a higher chance of YouTube recommending you in search results and suggestions.
This is great because it means that people who aren’t even actively looking for your content may find it, which translates into more views and more reach for your content.
6. Traffic Sources:
Traffic sources are essentially those places where people discover your videos. This metric helps you evaluate which source is beneficial in driving traffic to you so that you can put more effort into those. Some popular sources to pay attention to are:
– Social Media: Posting your video on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram can help drive new viewers. Sharing data-driven content, like high-quality infographics, can help boost engagement and discoverability, and including a link to your channel in your bio is also a good practice.
In the context of promoting a YouTube video, a use case diagram can also be a valuable tool to illustrate how different elements interact to enhance the visibility and engagement of the video on the platform.
– Email Lists: They’re great for sending out links to your latest video with a summary to support it.
– YouTube Search Bar: It accounts for a large amount of traffic to your video. Try having a crisp, catchy, SEO-optimized title that might generate more clicks.
7. Device Type:
This section lets you view which device your viewers are watching your video on — whether it’s on a mobile phone, computer, tablet, TV, or game console. This can help you decide how to optimize your content for viewing on your most popular platforms.
It’s likely that in today’s digital landscape, most of your viewers will come through mobile devices. Mobile users prefer short videos that are crisp and to the point, and you’ll have to make sure you include subtitles, a short title, and a readable thumbnail.
Whereas if you primarily have views from desktop or TV users, you might garner more views by creating playlists for back-to-back viewing and longer individual videos.
8. Audience Engagement:
There are a bunch of useful data points you can get from your Audience Engagement metrics, but the key ones to pay attention to are:
Views: The more views you get, the more likely your video is to pop up in searches, and the more likely are people to watch it. Try increasing your views by having interesting titles that work to pique potential viewers’ interest (but do not mislead the audience with your title, or your average view duration will drop).
Likes/Dislikes: Likes and dislikes are pretty self-explanatory; they help you evaluate how the bulk of your audience feels about each piece of content you put out. The more likes you have, the more likely someone might watch your video. The more dislikes you have, the fewer chances they’ll watch it.
Shares: Shares are how your audience engages with you directly. If your audience shares your content with their friends and family, you know you’ve got something good going!
Comments: If people are commenting on your videos, that’s one way they’re showing they are interested in your content. To increase your comments, you can include a call-to-action at the end of each video–asking them to comment with suggestions, tips, or their POVs.
Subscribers: The more subscribers you have, the more likely your videos are going to be viewed. Adding a call-to-action at the end of each video is a tried-and-true way to get more viewers to subscribe to your channel. You can think about this in terms of customer retention. Keeping your existing viewers coming back is just as important as attracting new ones, so healthy numbers here indicate that your content resonates with your audience and fosters a sense of loyalty.
9. Bounce Rates:
It’s vital to keep your bounce rate as low as possible. If your viewers don’t like what they see on your channel, they’ll just click over to someone else’s, which means you’ve lost out on the opportunity to build a relationship with that viewer.
There are a lot of different reasons someone might click away from one of your videos mid-way. Are they bored? Did they click the wrong video by mistake? Or maybe you’ve just got too much going on in the video—they don’t know where to look!
It’s important to understand what they might think, so you can address it. Keeping an eye on your bounce rates when you upload new types of video is a good way to gauge your audience’s response.
10. Conversion Rates:
Having a good conversion rate means that your content has a tangible impact on the viewer, enough to prompt them to take action — whether that’s moving on to watch another of your videos, click-off to a different website, or simply liking a video or subscribing to your channel.
YouTube’s annotations allow you to add pop-up links that viewers can click on while they watch your video. This is an easy way to get people off of YouTube and onto your site, and it’s almost as simple as adding a link to the description box underneath your video.
Here are some additional tips to increase your conversion rate through your video content:
- Include a call to action at the end of your video.
- Try to increase your views-people will be more likely to convert.
- An increase in comments can increase your conversion rate as well. Try asking your viewers to interact with you via the comments.
A Note About On-page Optimization!
It’s worth mentioning that while incorporating these metrics into your decision-making process can have a huge impact on your YouTube content’s performance, this assertion assumes you already take care of your video’s on-page optimization.
So, before you go, let’s do a quick rundown of the most important on-page optimization elements you’ll want to take care of to give your YouTube videos the most chances to succeed!
- Use Attention-grabbing Thumbnails: Your video’s thumbnail provides the first point of content users have with your video. Always use eye-catching, interesting thumbnails to both communicate what your video is about and give people scrolling a reason to click play.
- Optimize Your Video’s Title and Description: A clever and communicative title and an informative, optimized description can do wonders for your content’s visibility. Always include your primary keyword in your title, and make sure your description has links pointing to the rest of your online presence to get the most out of these two optimization resources.
- Include Transcript and Closed Captions: Accurate transcripts and closed captions improve your YouTube video’s accessibility while contributing to their searchability, as YouTube’s algorithm analyzes these elements to help contextualize your content’s topic and relevance to searches when recommending your videos to other people.
- Add End Screens and Relevant Annotations: End screens and annotations can be a really powerful discoverability tool. Use them adequately, and you’ll redirect a portion of your viewership to other relevant videos and playlists in your channel—or even the rest of your online presence—encouraging continuous engagement with your channel and content.
- Develop Playlists to Improve Watch Time: Organizing your videos in relevant playlists that group them by similar themes or topics can give users a great way to binge your videos and nurture your broader content marketing strategy. Improving not only your viewers’ experience through easier navigation, but also encouraging them to continue watching beyond the initial piece that brought them your way.
Seize The Data!
While there are several more metrics to take into consideration for your YouTube marketing strategy, we think these offer the perfect place to get you started. We know it can be a little complicated, but once you get the hang of it, we promise–it’s easy as pie.
So, if you’re looking to leverage your YouTube marketing strategy, get yourself familiar with the YouTube Analytics Platform and make use of the above data points to watch your video perform to the max. We promise it’ll do wonders!