If you’re like most people, chances are you love watching videos online, whether it’s on YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, or other platforms. According to HubSpot’s State of Inbound Marketing 2022 Report, video is the top content marketing media format for the third year in a row. Another survey showed that 27.2% of online viewers watched more than 10 hours of online video on a weekly basis. 

There’s no denying it—people love videos. And with an ever-increasing number of people heavily consuming videos online, incorporating video marketing into your overall marketing strategy is no longer an option but a necessity.

And with YouTube being home to 2.4 billion monthly active users and the second most popular social media platform, we highly recommend small businesses leverage the platform for growth.

To help you navigate the realm of YouTube marketing, we’ve put together this blog post, where we’ll be covering the pros and cons of YouTube for small businesses, how to start a YouTube channel, and more. 

Let’s get started.

 Someone's YouTube Channel

YouTube for Small Businesses—The Pros and Cons

Did you know that people watch more than one billion hours of YouTube videos daily? And people aren’t just watching action-packed, humor-filled videos from creators—they’re watching educational content like how-to videos, product reviews, and more. 

But, while YouTube presents a fantastic opportunity to reach a wider audience, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. Growing a YouTube channel requires time, effort, and resources.  

To help you decide if YouTube is the right marketing channel for your business, let’s look at some pros and cons. We’ll start with the pros. 

The Pros of YouTube for Small Businesses

Why should small businesses use YouTube? Allow us to share the benefits:

Video is Powerful and Promising

Consider the following statistics from Vidyard’s State of Video 2022 Report

  • About 82% of respondents reported that video, as a form of content, is becoming more and more important to their company. 
  • Over 70% of sellers claimed that video converts better than any other content format out there.
  • When asked how well video content is performing for them, over 45% of respondents reported that their video ROI is getting better.

With a staggering 45% of video marketers reporting a spike in ROI, we can conclude that video is performing well for businesses. When planned and implemented right, video can help you:

  • Build an emotional connection with your audience.
  • Engage them. 
  • Drive qualified traffic to your website.
  • Influence your consumers’ buying decisions.

Tap into YouTube’s Massive Audience Base

A recent report from DataReportal indicates that YouTube is the second most popular social media platform with over 2.4 billion monthly active users. Regardless of the generation you’re targeting, it’s safe to assume that at least some of your audience is hanging out on YouTube.

Furthermore, over 90% of people discover new brands on YouTube. This means that by leveraging YouTube, you’re not just engaging your already existing customers and showcasing your product demo or brand videos, you’re also expanding your reach. 

YouTube offers small businesses a chance to tap into their massive audience base and gain exposure to eyes they otherwise never would have reached. 

Increased Audience Engagement

It should come as no surprise that people prefer watching videos over reading large chunks of text. According to a scientific study, our brain processes visuals about 60,000x faster than text. In addition, 90% of the information our brain processes is visual.

It seems our brains are simply built to be drawn to video over other mediums. So it makes sense that YouTube does a better job of keeping your audience engaged. Short, digestible how-to videos are much more enticing for most content consumers than a 40-page eBook. 

And to take things a step further, by putting your face in front of your audience, you’re building trust. And that’s what people crave the most in today’s cluttered digital world. 

A Few More Pros

Apart from the three pros mentioned above, other benefits of using YouTube for small businesses include:

  • You don’t need to pay anything to create an account.
  • You can run highly targeted ads to put the right message in front of the right people at the right time.
  • If you plan and implement your YouTube marketing strategy right, you’ll see a spike in lead generation and conversion rates.
  • You can repurpose YouTube videos and use that content across several platforms.

The Cons of YouTube for Small Businesses

Now that you know the pros, let’s dive into the cons of YouTube for small businesses. 

Video Production is Time Consuming

YouTube marketing will only work for your business if you build a results-driven strategy and implement it right. Rolling out low-quality videos won’t help you engage your audience. 

Quality, quantity, and consistency all need to be top-of-mind if you want your channel to succeed—and that can require a significant time investment. And on top of production, editing your videos can take up even more of your precious time. To make the most out of your efforts, we’d advise you to use all-in-one video recording and editing platforms like BIGVU, VEED.IO, or Vimeo.

The good news here is that you don’t have to go all-out immediately. You don’t need to hire a team of 10 or purchase high-end camera gear in the initial stages; you can get your journey started with a smartphone (one with a good camera), tripod, microphone, and maybe a green screen background. 

You’ll Only See Results if You’re Consistent

Picture this: You’re excited to get your YouTube journey started. You create your business YouTube channel. You hire a freelance videographer and editor to produce engaging videos for you. You post your first video and ask your friends and family members to share it as much as they can. You cross the 100-subscriber mark—woohoo!

You publish your second video but it gets less engagement. You post your third, fourth, and fifth videos, and again, they all see less and less engagement. 

You’re not seeing results.

You find yourself getting frustrated and you ultimately decide to pause your efforts until you figure out the right way to grow. But you never resume your YouTube journey again.

It’s a tale as old as time—YouTube requires consistent effort, and many businesses give up before they ever realize their full potential on the platform. 

If you want to build a solid presence on YouTube, you have to go into it knowing that you probably won’t go viral overnight. Some businesses don’t even go viral after years of consistent YouTube posting.

As a business, your end goal shouldn’t be to go viral. Instead, it should be to slowly and steadily increase awareness of your brand. Take it one step at a time. There might be times when you don’t get a single like on one of your videos—and that’s okay. Consistency is the key to winning the YouTube game. 

The Competition is High

Did you know that more than 500 hours of video content is published on YouTube every single minute? This blog post should take about 7-8 minutes to read, so in the time you spend reading it, nearly 4,000 hours of video content will be published on YouTube.

There are millions of creators and businesses posting daily on YouTube. And with so much content out there, you may find it extremely hard to put your videos in front of your audience.

That’s the reason it’s important to be strategic. You can’t build a strong presence by creating videos without rhyme or reason. When you take the time to understand your audience, learn about their pain points and problems, conduct market research, and come up with video ideas revolving around this information, you’ll see yourself steadily climbing the ladder of success on YouTube. 

How to Start a YouTube Business Channel

Now that you’ve read the pros and cons, are you ready to get started? Allow us to walk you through how to launch your own YouTube Business channel.

To create a YouTube business channel, follow these steps:

→Create a dedicated Google account (or sign in using your existing channel). 

In order to create a YouTube channel, you need a Gmail account. If you don’t already have one, head over to www.google.com and click on “Sign in” in the right corner of the web page.

Google Sign In

Note: Since you are creating a YouTube channel for your business, we’d advise avoiding using your personal Google account. If you’re already signed in to your personal account or any other Google account, then tap on the profile icon and click on “Add Another Account.” 

Create Account

Next, click “Create account” as visible in the screenshot above. Once you click on it, you’ll see three options: For myself, For my child, and To manage my business. Since we’re creating a YouTube channel for your business, you’ll select “To manage my business.” 

Then, enter your information. 

Enter account details

YouTube will then ask you to verify your phone number and add a recovery email. Once you’re done verifying your phone number and entering your details, the final step in the account creation process is to agree to Google’s Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

→Create your YouTube channel.

Once you’re done creating your Google account, go to www.youtube.com and log in using the account you just created. 

Click on the profile icon in the top-right corner of the page and select “Settings.” Then, select “Create a channel.”

Create a Channel

Next, you’ll be asked to add your channel name—we’d recommend naming your channel after your business. 

Making Your Channel

Then, add your brand’s logo as the profile picture and click “Create Channel.”

→Optimize your channel.

The next step is to optimize your profile. Profile optimization includes:

  • Adding a channel description
  • Customizing your channel URL
  • Adding a link to your site
  • Adding contact information  
  • Adding a language
  • Adding a YouTube banner image
  • Selecting a spotlight video
  • Adding featured sections

Basically, you want your channel to be set up in a way that encourages new visitors to stick around and learn more about your brand. 

Get Started Today

Don’t think of YouTube as a platform that will help you drive thousands of leads to your website. Instead, think of it as a resource to improve the customer experience.   

Want to teach your audience how to use a product? Drive them to YouTube. 

Want to teach them how your product can solve a specific problem they’re dealing with? Let them find out via YouTube.   

Releasing a new product or service? Make an announcement on YouTube. 

The best time to get started is now. A little consistency and effort will go a long way—and your customers will thank you for it. 

What’s Podium up to on YouTube? Check out season two of ShopTalk.

Isaiah Rendorio
Isaiah Rendorio Product Marketing Manager, Campaigns

Isaiah Rendorio is the Product Marketing Manager for Podium Campaigns—helping local businesses tap into the power of SMS marketing to strengthen customer relationships, increase customer lifetime value, and drive more revenue.

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