YouTube possess more than 1.3 billion users and in any part of the world you will find more than eight out of 10 people between the ages of 18 and 52 prefer to watch YouTube, rather than spending time on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
It is no doubt that YouTube is the most popular social network website and the likes of Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Instagram are lagging behind in the race.
This situation gives the possibility that there can be a breakthrough for your marketing, as your target customers are already watching YouTube. Well, we also have to accept the fact that there is just a fraction of new or small enterprise having their presence on YouTube, whereas these enterprises are more active on Facebook. If we go by the actual data, around 90% for small or new businesses are not present on YouTube.
Now, if you have already taken the initiative and opened up a YouTube channel for yourself, then well done! But now, you have to learn how to turn your subscribers into paying customers smoothly.
We all know, YouTube is the most popular social networking website, where people like to pass the time. It has already surpassed Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, with a significant margin.
INCREASE SUBSCRIBERS AND ENGAGEMENT USING CALL-TO-ACTION CARDS
There is a unique and straightforward procedure for gathering attention from your viewers. We all know that on YouTube, you can attach notification cards in your videos. These cards have proved to be the easiest method to add communicating components to your videos and make the viewers engaged for a more extended period.
Supposedly, you have installed a card; you will notice it by the little “i” that can be seen in the right-hand corner of the screen. The moment your viewer clicks the icon, it will show your message, including a link if you’ve added one.
You can add mostly five cards to any video. Below is the description of each card.
Playlist cards– A short link attached to other videos on your channel or to a playlist of your suggestions.
Channel cards. You can link your video to a channel you want your viewers to know, for example, collaborators or brands you are currently tied up.
Donation cards– It can come handy and useful to make fundraising easy for non-profits.
Poll cards– This is useful in conducting surveys or getting feedback from viewers. You could throw a questionnaire to people about video content preferences, the industry they are currently working for, or anything you want to know from your viewers.
Link cards– You can add links to your associated web pages, crowdfunding sites, and merchandises. Note: Only the members of YouTube’s “Partner Program” are allowed to create link cards.
Last but not the least, you should add an end screen in the last 20 seconds of your video while giving your viewers a sneak peek at whatever video you want them to watch next. Also, remind them to subscribe, or making them participate and visit a landing page where you provide information about special offers or contest.
This is a typical example of a Poll card. You can insert a poll card in your YouTube video and learn more about your audience’s interests.
GENERATE LEADS USING CONTESTS
It is an obvious thing to acknowledge that YouTube can be a more tricky activity to do. You want to do creative work every time you post on your channel, but you also have a fear of losing out viewers or subscribers. So, there is a solution where you don’t have to compromise on content and can collect leads. This can be done by making a contest or performing lottery for exciting giveaways.
In fact, there are many “Mobile reviewers” on YouTube, who are paid by mobile companies, to give a positive review on their mobile. The YouTubers then create a marketing campaign, where it pleads its viewers/subscribers to comment on the video and the lucky winners (which is said to be randomly chosen), will get a new handset of Premium mobile set. “MKBHD,” is a renowned name in Youtube and has a wide following in the form of subscribers. He is one of the leading reviewers who do giveaways. These kinds of marketing campaign make you popular across the YouTube community way faster.
A few years ago, Ford also ran a similar contest called the “The Fiesta Movement” where they ran the contest for “gave away cars.” of around 100 Ford Fiestas for the winner. Irrespective of the giveaway’s: Ford received more than five million people to the contest on social media and saw a 38 per cent increase in awareness of the Fiesta amongst a targeted audience. A well thought and implemented plan without even spending a penny on traditional advertising.
Before getting into the details about incentives and contests you should get familiarized with YouTube. Every social network platform is getting more and more protective of data and user privacy, so they continuously change guidelines on a timely basis. This is the primary reason why it is suggested to all the bloggers or Youtubers to host contests and announce giveaways and other promotions activities on their websites or landing pages/microsites “first,” and then promote the campaigns on the various social channels (Including YouTube). It’s a win-win situation for the Youtubers as you are in prime control of your user’s overall experience and bringing more traffic to your site. You also safely collects the data, without any copyright issue from the brands which can be the most valuable to you.
FOLLOW YOUTUBE’S RULES FOR CONTESTS AND GIVEAWAYS
Now it is easy to create a channel and start making a video and announcing giveaway but before doing that, take a moment to understand YouTube’s rules for contests and giveaways. Like other social platforms, YouTube has created specific rules and regulations that creators must follow when they host such contests.
Rule no. 1, YouTube does not permit contests to be run through the method of advertisement. YouTube’s broad community guidelines involve contests, so make sure you’re acquainted with those as well.
YouTube has a long list of rules regarding contests.
Here are some of the essential rules to be aware of, and how could they impact your contest*:
According to YouTube: “You are solely responsible for your contest.” It means: YouTube is not responsible for any misadventures or damage related to your contest, including cheating, fraud, and misrepresentation of prizes that go undelivered to the announced winners or videos that aren’t loaded.
- According to YouTube: “Your contest must comply with all applicable federal, state and local laws, rules and regulations, including U.S. sanctions.” It means: You must ensure the requirements to meet local age/eligibility status and submitting appropriate disclosure requirements. You should be well aware as in some states in the U.S. require companies to register for bond prizes which exceed over $500 whereas in other states, prizes worth around $5000 must be registered and bonded. It depends on which state of US you are in to act accordingly and abide by the law.
- According to YouTube: “Your contest cannot get part of any violation or encourage any form of violation of any third party rights or the participation, which is a unlawful activity.” It means: You cannot ask people to share copyright material or perform illegal acts as ways for entering your contest. For example, you cannot ask your viewers to drink and drive on the road, without being caught by police.
- As per YouTube: “You cannot ask the users to give all rights for, or transfer the ownership of, their entry to you.” It means: You have no permission to ask for any rights that breaks YouTube’s license agreement. By uploading your videos to YouTube, you are entering into their license agreement, giving them the right to show the video. If you ask for exclusive rights, it may be against standard YouTube’s license agreement.
- As per YouTube: “Your contest must be free to enter” (don’t forget to check your local lottery laws). It means: You can’t make people mandatory to purchase anything from your company/associate to get a chance to win. If you state a purchase, that means you are running a lottery. FYI, private lotteries are illegal in the U.S.
- According to YouTube: “You and a third party must not manipulate metrics on the YouTube service, including numbers of views, likes, dislikes or subscribers.” It means: Do not overstate your numbers or use a software/tool that can increase your subscribers/likes numbers.
- As per YouTube: “You cannot associate or affiliate YouTube with your contest without YouTube’s prior written consent.” It means: You must specify in your official statement while announcing contest/giveaways that it is not associated or endorsed by YouTube.
Your Official Contest Rules
What YouTube says: You must have to comply with “official rules” which:
- You have to add links to the YouTube Community Guidelines and specify that entries that don’t fulfil these rules will be disqualified. It means: YouTube prohibits content that shows nudity or sexual content; harmful or dangerous content; hateful content; violent or graphic content; harassment or cyberbullying; spam; misleading metadata; and scams or threats. Material that has copyright issue or privacy issue, or imitates an individual or channel might be removed.
- You have to mention all of your disclosures agreement forms required by all applicable federal, state and local laws, rules and regulations, including U.S. sanctions. It means: On your official rules and regulation section, you have to include details about the actual value of your prize, including information about contest registration and bonding, and all of the tax liabilities.
- You should always maintain compliance and be consistent with YouTube Terms of Service. It means: Your rules should be allied with YouTube’s Terms of service.
- According to YouTube: You must conduct your contest, and all prizes details and the ones who are awarded should be defined in your official rules. It means: If you have announced the prize, you have to grant them!
- According to YouTube: “You are responsible for your rules and all aspects of your contest administration.” It means: You are liable to write your own rules and ensure people who enter your contest are following them. YouTube does not provide any support to you.
- As per YouTube: You have to explicitly mention that “YouTube is not a sponsor of your contest” and the users have to release YouTube from any liability related to contest. It means: Have clarity in your rules that YouTube is not involved in your contest.
The following YouTube rule is specified separately, under YouTube’s conditions of use, but it is the biggest one: You should not offer or promote prizes or rewards in exchange for just clicking on a like/ subscribe button.
Lastly, if your contest is getting backed by a third party, to illustrate you are giving away prizes that were prior given to you or the company whose prizes you are giving away, sponsors you, you must always disclose the sponsorships as per the Federal Trade Commission. The repetition can be as simple as: “I purchased FTC Disclaimer: The prizes offered in this giveaway were provided to me by “this” company” — or whatever you might choose to write.
DECIDE ON THE TYPE OF CONTEST
The choice is yours of whether to run your contest on YouTube, or promote your channel/ webpage on YouTube; there are lots of scopes for making YouTube contests successful. In this article, as we are discussing generating leads, we will discuss further in various other steps
Vote to Enter
Let your viewers/subscribers decide what they like best. Start to display two or three different videos and let your users vote on their favourite. To be noted, before they start to vote, they have to fill out your form. Here’s how you can set it up.
In this example, you own a gym, where you have a lot of equipment and latest facility to train your members. You have started a YouTube channel, where you want to start a contest and a lovely giveaway to some of the lucky winners. You can show three videos of workout session and ask them, which workout they find out the most difficult, injury free and muscle building? The moment the viewers enters the contest to answer the question, they have first to fill up the essential details, where they have to mention their valid email address and phone number.
Allow your followers to vote and share their favourite video in exchange for a chance to win the prize. The more they share the more popularity you are gaining in YouTube community.
VIEW AND appreciate
You should always choose a winner at random, but make sure you communicate with everyone who has entered into the contest by sending them a thanks message. It would be fantastic, by including a code of discount coupon on a purchase of specific products.
Upload and Vote
This is an aggressive user-generated contest, where you ask your viewers to submit their video, maybe showing them using or talking about your product. In keeping with the exercise theme, you would ask people to share a clip of them doing some hard-core exercises with some creativity or equipment, so that their popularity will indirectly increase the traffic to your channel.
If there is any scope of cheating, you can announce to your viewers that the top 10 selected contestants will be going into the final round and then you or a panel of judges will choose the eventual winner.
Have your viewers/subscribers upload their video, vote for their favourite and share to get more votes.
VIEW AND CREATE YOUR OWN
Comment-to-win is the single most popular YouTube contest or giveaway because there is no specific procedure to be followed to enter. To participate in this contest, viewers/subscribers have to leave a comment. The only drawback with this kind of contest is that it is difficult to manage entries, and even more difficult to collect any contact information.
As discussed above, you could format the contest in such a way where the comments work like a poll. Here, you ask people to comment with the name of a favourite product (or videos), getting the answer to any question you ask or to caption your video. The best way to do it is, when you ask a question, add a statement of providing a small giveaway to the individuals who will post a comment and fill out the form. In this way, you can get the data as well as get views & share of your videos.
- A YouTube creator Kristin Omdahl used a YouTube contest to collect email addresses.
- FYI, Charles Preston is a sushi chef who had hosted a “comment to win” contest.
WORD OF MOUTH
It was a trend at that time when just posting a piece of content and expect it to get all the organic attention; we could only imagine this in today’s date. Nowadays, whether you’re trying to get success through blogging, a contest or any other sort of promotional campaign, you must get creative with it. Well, unlike this, Harley Davidson did something more traditional in their promotional activity with their #FindYourFreedom campaign, which became a sensation in every media organization and was picked up within few moments of the announcement.
Harley Davidson has undergone a promotion campaign that includes a free motorcycle and a decent paycheck to ride the bike for the summer and write about it.
It is entirely different in case of contest software, where the built-in features are designed to make the campaign more attractive and share-worthy. For example, you use a “refer-a-friend” tool to give extra chances for your participants to win if they share your contest.
Always promote your contest first on your website, blog, your newsletter or your social channels (including updating all the headers on your channels). Even emailing gives higher conversion rates than any social networking platform, so never forget to send email info to your subscribers. If you have good relationships with subscribers, inspire them to share a link to your promotion, and do invest money in paid ads and don’t worry, it will give you better returns in the long run.
If you’re looking for possible situations where you can get your business to a massive audience, and turn those people from being just viewers/subscribers into engaged potential customers, a contest is a trump card. You can use a contest to collect UGC and bring traffic to your website. Do let us know if you had any form of success with a YouTube contest.
Note:-*this is not an official statement from legal authorities. The whole purpose is to design a strategy and form a plan to help you get on the ship of money and videos.