YouTube 'Analytics' Boosts Video Marketing Results

New tools for YouTube that perform analytics functions give small Web shop owners information they need to target their online video marketing.
You shot a clever video, edited it, and added titles and transitions. You uploaded it to YouTube and watched the number of viewings climb. But for some reason, your YouTube epic hasn't delivered any new business. What's up with that?

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Until recently, you'd be left to speculate. But YouTube's free Insight tools offer auteurs a fairly detailed look at their audiences' demographics and viewing patterns.

"Insight has turned the world's largest online video community into the world's largest focus group," said Aaron Zamost, YouTube spokesperson.

Anyone with a YouTube account can view metrics regarding a video's popularity; which Web sites and keywords are driving visitors to a video; and the geographic regions audiences are in, he adds.

YouTube Insight tools help you determine if you're reaching your target audience and optimize future videos to ensure they reach their widest audience.

In recent years, YouTube has become a popular, free marketing tool for e-commerce businesses small and large. (Read "YouTube: Eight Ways to Market Your Small Business" for tips on how to use YouTube in your marketing.)

YouTube Insight was launched in March 2008. Several new Insight tools have been added since then, most recently Hot Spots. Here's a quick breakdown of the five Insight tools:
  1. Views displays on a graph how often a video has been viewed over a period of time. You can adjust the graph to show the number of times your video was viewed in one day, five days, one month, three months, and so on. Views also displays a world map. Click any country to see how many times your video was viewed by its citizens over a period of time.

  2. Popularity is a graph that provides a measure between 0 and 100 to indicate how popular your video is compared to all other YouTube videos. As with Views, you can also click on a world map to determine how your video rates on the popularity scale in each country.

  3. Discovery shows how viewers discovered your video. For example, you might find that 63 percent of the total views for your video came from people who'd been watching related YouTube videos, 14 percent resulted from YouTube searches, and 1.1 percent found your video from a Google search.

  4. Demographics graphs the age breakdown of your video's audience. It also offers a pie chart showing the percentage of male and female viewers.

  5. Hot Spots displays a graph next to your video that maps whether the audience is lower or higher than average at each point of the video. If the graph goes above the 'average' line, that exact point in your video is 'hot,' meaning an above-average amount of viewers have watched that particular part of the video. When the graph dips below average, it indicates a point where audiences are bailing.

Anyone who's posted a YouTube video has access to the Insight tools. (But only the account owner of a YouTube channel can see the information Insight tools provide.) To use the Insight tools, log into your YouTube account. Select 'Account' at the top right of the YouTube screen, followed by 'My Videos.' Find the video for which you want to get information and click the 'Insight' button. Then click to select any of the five Insight tools.

Surprises and Lessons Learned

"I'm really impressed with the tools," said Charles Smith, a potter in Mobile, Ala., who says his YouTube videos  have boosted his business by at least 15 pecent. In his videos, Smith demonstrates his prowess at the pottery wheel — only to mash down the piece he's just spun before the camera.

(Continue to Page 2 for Details on Marketing with YouTube Insight)

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