You’ve created an exceptional marketing video. It feels authentic to your brand and has a clear, focused message. That means your work is done, right? Not so fast. Making a great video is just the first step. Now you need to make sure people see it with smart video promotion strategies.
As video creation experts, we’ve seen first-hand the difference that smart video promotion can make. The best way to maximize video ROI is to make sure your video gets seen. With dozens of places to share your content, it’s easy to miss valuable opportunities. That’s why we made the handy video promotion infographic.
View and download the infographic below, then read on for more details on how to promote videos for maximum exposure.
Video Promotion Checklist Infographic
Video Promotion Phase 1: Prepare
Before you even think about sharing your video with the world, you need some supporting material. The right title, thumbnails, and description will help your video stand out on the algorithms. That increases the odds that it will be seen by your ideal customer.
Video Promotion Phase 1 includes all of the essentials to prepare before you share your video. Plan to tackle these tasks before your video goes live on any platform.
1. Pick the Perfect Title
Short but descriptive. Smart but clear. Your video title has to accomplish a lot in just a few words. Your title should either:
- Make a promise that your video delivers.
- Ask a question that your video answers.
- Present a problem your video solves
When in doubt, aim for clarity over cleverness. Remember to avoid clickbait. You absolutely must deliver on the promise, answer the question, or solve the problem if you want viewers to keep trusting you. And yes, it will help if you include the kind of keywords your customers use to search (for more on that, check out tip 6).
Examples of effective video titles:
- 18 Clever Ways to Promote Your Next Video
- Why is No One Watching Your Content? And How to Fix it!
- You’ve Been Promoting Videos Wrong Your Whole Life
2. Choose A Thumbnail
Select a thumbnail image that’s interesting enough to invite people to click. You might even choose a couple of thumbnails to attract different audiences on different platforms. Think of your thumbnail as a book cover. It needs to make people curious to learn more.
For example, which of these two images do you think makes a better thumbnail?
The first one draws you in. The emoji ball is confused. What’s he confused about? What are his friends in the background doing? You want to click to find out more. While both images are still, the first is clearly in the middle of a story. The second image needs more context to be effective, which means it’s probably not the best choice for a thumbnail.
Pro Tip: If your thumbnail is going to act as an image link (in an email, for example) you may want to do some quick photo editing to overlay a play button like in our examples above. This will invite people to click through to your video. Free content creation tools can make this easy.
3. Design Your Thumbnail with Added Text
The best thumbnail designs include text that helps potential viewers understand what the video is about. You can use Canva or Photoshop to create text overlays that help your videos stand out. Check out these examples from Simon Whistler for inspiration.
Thumbnails with text are absolute musts on YouTube, which is the second-biggest search engine in the world! There, your videos will compete for viewer attention with only a thumbnail and title to help them stand out.
Pro Tip: You don’t have to use your full video title in your thumbnail image. In fact, it might be better not to. The thumbnail title should give an idea of the topic while the full title gives extra details that make people want to click. The middle image above is a great example of this.
4. Create A GIF
This is the only optional element in phase one of your video promotion process. You don’t absolutely need a GIF to promote your video, but it can be an eye-catching bonus. In email and on some social platforms, you can use a GIF in place of a thumbnail to draw attention to your video without autoplaying.
Pro Tip: Choose a section of the video that will work well as a loop and will also give the viewer some idea of what the video is about. Think of a GIF as a very short trailer for your video.
5. Write A Description
Craft a keyword-rich description that tells people what the video is about. If you plan to use it as a meta description, stick to between 50 and 160 words. If you’re using the text to accompany your video on social media, Youtube, or on your blog, you can expand it a little.
Pro Tip: For some social media platforms the keywords in your description may work better as #hashtags. Adjust your hashtags to better reflect what’s trending and relevant on each platform.
6. Identify Keywords
Speaking of keywords: What keywords or hashtags describe your video? These are the words someone might search for if they were looking for a video like yours. Use them in descriptions and social media posts to help people discover your video.
Having a ready-made list of these words will increase your visibility across different marketing platforms. Consider words that describe the video or the target audience. Different keywords may work best on specific platforms, but for now, just put together a list of words or phrases that might be useful.
Pro Tip: You can use keyword research tools like Keyword Tool, Hashtagify, or Google Search Console to find relevant keywords for your industry. Answer the Public is particularly effective at finding long-tail keywords.
7. Create a Transcript
A transcript makes your video more accessible, and not just for people with hearing impairments. Many people watch videos with the sound turned off, especially when they are on their phones in public areas.
Including captions or uploading a transcript with your video helps viewers stay engaged. Transcripts can also make your video more discoverable by search engines.
Pro Tip: Many video sharing platforms, including YouTube, Instagram and Facebook, offer automatic transcription. If you use this feature or other AI transcription tools, always double-check to catch any embarrassing errors.
8. Create an SRT File
An SRT file is a specially formatted text file that adds captions to your videos. YouTube, Vimeo, and some social media platforms let you upload custom SRT files with your videos. You’d need special software to create these files yourself. Fortunately, online services like REV.com can do it for you.
9. Choose Metrics
Decide which metrics are most important for measuring the success of your video. You might think that the most important metric is views, but that’s not always the case. Think about what you’re really trying to accomplish with this video. Might click-through rate be a better gauge of success? Or even conversions?
Pro Tip: Hoping to go viral is not a strategy. Focus on measurable metrics that you can track. Then make thoughtful adjustments to achieve consistent growth.
Video Promotion Phase 2: Share
With all of the essential materials ready to go, you can start sharing your video across different marketing platforms. Steps 10 through 15 on our video promotion checklist help you get your video in front of as many viewers as possible.
10. Include a Call To Action
Most of the time, your ultimate goal is not to get someone to watch your video. What you really want them to do is buy, sign up, or contact you. So tell them!
Adding a call to action encourages viewers to take action. Your CTA should be one simple action they can take right now. Examples include:
- Contact us today
- Call now
- Download our free eBook
- Register now
- Start your free trial
Crafting an excellent call to action helps turn viewers into customers. You can add your CTA in the text around your video, on a card at the end, or as part of the video itself. Maybe try all three.
11. Share On Organic Social Media
Share your video across all of your social media channels. This might include Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok or other channels you use to communicate with your audience. Don’t forget to optimize it for each channel using the correct technical specifications!
Pro Tip: Wherever possible, upload directly to your social media account rather than sharing a link from a hosting platform. Most social media channels prefer native video.
12. Create a Social Media Ad
You don’t have to create a paid social media ad campaign for every video. But a few well-chosen ads can help you increase awareness, boost viewership, and maximize reach. Before you promote a video ask yourself:
- Who is the ideal audience for this video?
- What is my budget for an ad campaign?
- What am I hoping to accomplish with this ad?
- How will I track and measure success?
Pro Tip: Set specific goals for your video ad so you can easily measure whether it’s performing the way you want it too. Clear goals can also help you pick the right paid social channel for your video ad.
13. Draft A Blog Post
Video promotion blog posts can take several forms. The simplest option is to embed the video and include a short description. You could also post the video with a full transcription for those who prefer to read. Or, you might write a post that expands on an idea in your video. Then embed or include a link to the video in your blog post.
Pro Tip: Surrounding your video with relevant text and keywords helps it rank on Google and other search engines. It also gives viewers another way to engage with your brand and content.
14. Send Out An Email
If you have an email list, you don’t have to rely on your blog and social media alone for video promotion. Share videos with people who already follow you through email. You can do this as a stand-alone message or as part of your regularly scheduled newsletter. Use your GIF, description and thumbnail to make the video irresistible to your list subscribers.
Pro Tip: Join the IdeaRocket mailing list to get a monthly newsletter with the latest video industry insight, marketing advice, and pro tips.
15. Write a Video Press Release
Press releases might not feel modern, but they really do work for video promotion. If your video is newsworthy, time-sensitive, or seasonal, a press release can help you get exposure.
Journalists are busy, so when a press release is packed with timely information and a video, they’re thrilled that someone has done a lot of the work for them. One study found that PR with embedded media increases engagement by 55%.
Attach a link to your video at the top of the press release, and include a thumbnail. You can send your press release directly to bloggers, podcasters and journalists or post it on relevant PR sites like Newswire.
Pro Tip: If your press release earns you some coverage, link to the story and use that to further promote your brand. Then create a press page on your site to show your authority and help you earn even more press in the future.
Video Promotion Phase 3: Outreach
Targeted outreach can help attract even more eyes to your video. You’re looking for specific people who could gain value from watching your video or who might want to share it with their audience. Steps 16 through 18 on our video promotion checklist show you how to find and approach these helpful people.
16. Recruit Influencers
Think about the people in your industry who might be interested enough in this video to like and potentially share it with their own followers. This could be a formal arrangement with a B2B influencer, but it doesn’t have to be.
If you have a professional relationship with someone who might be willing to share your video, it can be as easy as sending the person a message or tagging them on social media.
Pro tip: Don’t overuse this option. Make sure the person you tag really would get value from the video. If it doesn’t feel relevant to them, they’ll ignore you. Worse, they might ignore future messages from you because you’ll gain a reputation as a spammer.
17. Answer Questions on Public Forums
People use the internet to find answers to problems. One of the most popular ways to get answers to your questions is by visiting Q&A sites like Quora. Search Quora for relevant keywords that have to do with your business and jump in!
Answer questions with simple direct responses that include a link to your video. A popular Quora response featuring your video (with a lot of upvotes) can drive a surprising amount of traffic to your site.
You can use the same video promotion tactic on Reddit. Just make sure that you’re offering useful information that directly answers the question being asked and always follow community guidelines for the subreddit you’re posting in.
18. Enlist Your Team to Share
Make sure everyone on your marketing and sales teams has access to a sharable version of the video. They should be able to easily send it to a potential client or post it to their own social media accounts to help spread the word. You might even want to give the sales team talking points.
- The video answers the following questions…
- This video is aimed at customers interested in these topics….
- The video overcomes the following objections…
By giving your sales team access to your video library, you help them make sales and you get the most out of your video.
Pro Tip: As shown above, LinkedIn gives you a “notify employees” button which will automatically let all of your team members who are on LinkedIn know that a new video has been posted. It’s a simple way to maximize video promotion.
When to Use This Video Promotion Checklist
Use this video promotion checklist for every video you create. When you prepare, share, and outreach, you help your ideal audience discover your video. More eyes on your content means you’re more likely to meet your goals.
Of course, all of this works best when you start with a high-quality video that engages your potential customers. That’s where IdeaRocket comes in. We create videos in a variety of techniques such as 2d and 3d animation, whiteboard and live action, and for diverse uses such as explainer videos, HR videos, healthcare videos, and animated commercials. Contact one of our video creation experts today.