Brian Honigman

3 Benefits of Answering YouTube Comments on Your Channel

YouTube Channel

Engagement is a huge buzz word in the social media space. Brands are often tasked with spurring this engagement with their audiences on each social network they are active on, but often comments on a brand’s YouTube channel are left unanswered. It’s just as important to respond to the comments of YouTube users on your channel as it is to respond to a wall post on your Facebook Page or a mention of your brand’s Twitter account. Here are three main benefits of responding to comments on your YouTube channel.

YouTube Channel

1. Authority

Answering comments on your videos, which are typically focused on your products, services, company or industry, helps clearly show your understanding of your specialty. The more questions you answer from your audience, the more likely they’ll return for more insights from your channel as the authority on a particular industry. Just as it’s important to create quality, informative videos; it’s equally important to help spur quality conversations around your videos and the comments your viewers leave on your channel. Your brand knows your industry the best, so answer and respond to comments to make sure your audience knows this as well.

2. Community

Creating a place where your voice, as well as the input of your audience is thriving will help grow your community to be a valuable asset. By building trust with your viewers by answering questions, responding to comments and addressing issues; it will strengthen future and existing relationships with your audience. Use a personal tone when responding to YouTube comments to give your brand an approachable feel. The more quickly you respond with helpful information, the happier your YouTube audience will be and surprised, since many YouTube comments on brand channels go unanswered.

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3. Visibility

An additional benefit to answering your YouTube comments is that this continued conversation leads to increased visibility in YouTube and Google search results. The more comments and interaction one of your videos has, the more value YouTube’s & Google’s search algorithm places on it for certain searches. It’s one of the many factors this algorithm takes into account when determining what videos to rank for what key phrases being searched.

For example, if you search for how to build a deck in Google or how to build a deck in YouTube, Home Depot’s YouTube video can be found on the first page of results front and center. Many other videos listed in the results have more views, but rank lower then Home Depot’s video that has less views. This is partly because this video has 55+ comments and 92 likes. Home Depot answered some of the comments, helping entice users to continue to comment. It can be assumed that the search algorithm takes comments on your videos as an important indication of it’s quality and therefore, gives it higher rankings for certain searches. The more you’re found in YouTube or Google search, the more visibility your video content will have on the web. Be sure to encourage comments in your videos, as well as taking the time to answer the comments on your videos to start driving greater visibility to your content.

Home Depot Comments

Are you currently answering your YouTube channel’s comments? What have you found to be the best way to interact with your audience on YouTube? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

How 3 Small Businesses Succeeded on Google+

smallbiz

Whether Google+ is right for most businesses has yet to be seen.  A former Googler has even questioned Google’s focus on making Google+ a success. Nevertheless, some businesses have made outstanding progress using Google+, and here we present three small businesses who’ve done themselves well on the network. Learn what they’re are doing right and apply it to fit the social plan of your small business.

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Pinterest Guide: How to Pin Images from your iPhone

Pinterest App

Pinterest is simply addictive and the numbers support the fever. This February, Pinterest saw 16.23 million unique visitors alone. The masses are constantly pinning and repinning and at this point 80 percent of pins are repins. Much of the traffic on Pinterest is via the Pinterest mobile app, which easily allows for repinning of content already added to the Pinterest ecosystem.

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6 Ways to Use Quora for Research

quora, social networks

Have you ever used Quora before to solve an unanswered question or start a conversation about an interesting topic? As a platform, Quora allows its community to post and answer questions about anything of their choosing to gain collective knowledge. One way to take advantage of this question and answer based feedback is using it for your day to day researching needs.

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6 Ways Brands Can Rock Pinterest

Pinterest Example (Image 1)

Pinterest was one of the most heavily trafficked social media networks of 2011, which was surprising to many because its rise to success was a quiet one. Pinterest is a form of social bookmarking where users pin different images and YouTube videos from across the web to boards they’ve created based on a subject area of their liking. For instance, you can create a board entitled Best Places on Earth and then pin images of island getaways, beautiful landscapes or whatever images you think fit this board best. Your boards are displayed on your profile for your network to see, like or repin to their own boards if they so choose. You’re able to follow other users and/or their individual boards of content they’ve assembled. Pinterest allows users to sign up through their Twitter or Facebook, which makes it easy to connect with your friends already on the network.

This platform presents an opportunity for brands to market themselves in a new arena and truly succeed during the network’s humble beginnings. Here are 5 ways brands can rule at fostering their Pinterest community:

1. Create Custom Images Catered for Sharing

Pinterest is all about discovering images that you wish to share with others in a visually pleasing format. With this in mind, brands should look to create image assets for Pinterest that provide insightful, original or branded imagery and information. After you develop these images, share them on your website and on other social networks to encourage their sharing on Pinterest. The best part of this process is that these images can be pulled from other advertising or used for your other promotional efforts.

For example, Cargo created this image of their EyeLighter product that give users quick and easy tips on how to make their eyes pop. This is exactly the kind of image assets users love to share on Pinterest because it’s visually appealing and gives insightful information at a glance. Brands should take note and continue to create content of this nature in the future.

2. Create a Profile for your Brand
At this point in the game, users can join Pinterest by invite-only. Once added to the network, you can create your account by syncing with your Twitter or Facebook. The same goes for when you’re inviting users to Pinterest, except you can invite them initially via email. Since there aren’t yet brand specific profiles, you’ll have to invite your brand to the network via email. The Facebook integration at this time is only for personal profiles, not pages. Therefore, choose the email associated with your brand’s Twitter account to set up your profile.

Once you’re on Pinterest, it’s time to either keep the profile photo that’s been pulled from your Twitter account or upload a new one. I recommend uploading a new profile photo because this is a different social network with its own unique purposes. To do so, hover over your account name at the top right hand corner and click on settings from the drop down menu. From here you can also alter the name and email associated with account, add a location and website and then add a brief description of your brand. Here you can also choose to link your Twitter to your account publicly.

For example, Whole Foods has set up an account and have been actively engaging their community with visually appealing content. This is good example of how you can brand your profile appropriately to appeal to your audience.

3. Add Pinterest Social Plugins to Your Website
There are a few goodies that Pinterest offers brands to add to their websites as a means of connecting their web visitors to their audience on the network.

The Follow Button can be added to your website or blog to allow your web visitors to quickly and easy follow your profile on the network. By giving users the option to follow your brand on Pinterest, you’ll be giving them the ability to look through the images and YouTube videos you’ve shared previously, in the hopes that they’ll share them with their networks again, and you’ll be able to share images and YouTube videos with them in the future since they are now your follower.

The Pin It Button allows your web visitors to pin the content from your website directly to their boards on Pinterest. This plugin should be added to similar places where you would add a Like or Tweet button. By adding this button, you’re making your web content extremely easy to share on the platform.

4. Pin Other Industry Content

Pinterest’s etiquette states that users, this includes brands, should shun away from using the network as purely promotional. Sharing images & videos from other industry related user’s boards will help keep your profile community based and not just a promotion center for your assets and products. Repin & like other content that suits your community, which will help strengthen your reach in the long term.

HGTV’s profile does just this on their Start Gardening board where they share content from both their website and other blogs with valuable content about gardening. This helps them strengthen their relationships with other people of interest in their industry specific community on Pinterest.

5. Add Calls to Action to Your YouTube Videos

The main focus of Pinterest is obviously sharing noteworthy photos, but YouTube videos can also be pinned as well (my guess is other types of content will be able to pinned in the future too). Another means of drawing attention to your content is by adding annotations to your videos, basically a call-to-action for your audience to pin videos they find appealing.

Similar to creating and sharing images that would be ideal for sharing on Pinterest, add annotations to videos that are short, visually appealing and provide true value to your community like a how to video for baking apple pie or to how to apply the right amount of eye makeup. These annotations should tell them the visitor to “pin this video to Pinterest” or provide a link to your Pinterest profile. The annotation serves as another reminder to users to engage with you in another way in a different community.

6. Cross Promote

Since the network is still relatively new, be sure to drive traffic from your existing communities on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ or wherever your audience is actively discussing your brand. Post links to your Pinterest profile, letting your communities know you’re on this network and looking for them to join in and begin pinning your content.

This is a guest post from Brian Honigman. Brian is the Social Media Account Manager at LunaMetrics.

10 Best Social Plugins for WordPress

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Although Tumblr has overtaken WordPress for having more blogs on the web, many websites choose WordPress for its unmatchable usability, customizable layouts and outright professional feel. One of the many joys of using WordPress are the thousands upon thousands of plugins you can easily add to your website. There are a lot of plugins focused on your social media needs, however choosing the right one’s for your website can be difficult with such a huge selection. Here are 10 recommendations for social media related WordPress plugins:

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