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Why Defense Contractors Should Use YouTube for Marketing

Defense contractors who use YouTube can increase awareness and preference, demonstrate products, share knowledge, and put a likeable, human face on their company.

Defense contractors have learned that video can sometimes tell a story quicker and easier than a written post, and can give an interesting personality to what could otherwise be a faceless company. Plus, a keyword-titled video often shows up higher in search results than a written post.

The benefits of YouTube versus other video sharing sites include:

  • Can facilitate a cohesive video strategy, with comprehensive reporting and analytics.
  • Improved search engine rankings (YouTube, owned by Google, has overtaken Yahoo as the second largest search engine).
  • Improved video link sharing (when people receive a YouTube video link, they are familiar with the video player and know how to share it).

A YouTube whitepaper on best practices for the B2B marketer is available, and is handy reference for defense contractors who are already marketing with YouTube, as well as those who are getting started.

Here's my summary of of the best practices, particularly as they relate to reaching and communicating with a defense contractor's customers, stakeholders and influencers:

  • Upload all your video assets - Your videos may be more interesting than you realize. Make sure to properly tag the videos so they can be found. And keep the videos fresh.
  • Create great content- The most important best practice is to upload content that is useful and relevant. Defense contractors should share videos such as
    1. Product demonstrations
    2. How to & expert advice
    3. Case studies
    4. Conferences/events
    5. Thought leadership
  • Be found - Just posting the videos on YouTube will not be sufficient. Think about search terms your audience uses and include them in your video description along with your tags. In certain instances, advertising on YouTube can also help.
  • Build a home for your brand on YouTube - You can create your firm's own branded YouTube channel, which can be customized to engage and build an audience in an environment they trust. Click here for a YouTube technical guide "Creating and Customizing a Brand Channel."
  • Track, analyze and improve - Track your viewership to understand your audience and how they interact. Use tools like YouTube Insight to get information on who your viewers are, and Google Analytics to track the performance of your brand channel as if it were your own site.
  • Innovate & Integrate - Make YouTube an integrated extension of a comprehensive marketing strategy. Most defense contractors are barely scraping the surface with what can be done on YouTube, both creatively and in terms of the available technology.

Click here to download a copy of "YouTube: Best Practices for the B2B Marketer," or view the SlideShare presentation below.

The Principal and Founder of Artillery, Douglas Burdett is a former artillery officer and Madison Avenue ad man. He also hosts The Marketing Book Podcast, where he interviews authors every week about the latest in modern marketing and sales.

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