Brafton has reported that YouTube now boasts 113 million viewers and counting, indicating video search engine optimization should be a marketing strategy for 2011 – and a new development from the site makes video SEO even more important. To help internet users find relevant videos, YouTube has launched an opt-in experiment called YouTube Topics on Search, and marketers who optimize their video content may appreciate how the tool categorizes clips on the site.
In the YouTube blog, the company announces its search tool prototype and shows a demonstration video of how Topics on Search works. Brafton has opted into the feature and run some searches firsthand.
Typing a YouTube search for "beauty tips" produces countless video results of young women offering up their best beauty advice, and there is also a toolbar under the query field with a number of related searches, as well as an "Explore" option.
Clicking "Explore" breaks down "beauty tip" video results by topic, so users can pick the results most relevant to them. The videos are separated by categories, such as "hair tutorial" or "outfit of the day." There are also options to refine results by username – a feature that rewards web publishers who have set their videos apart and established themselves as thought leaders in the beauty industry.
On the general Topics Search toolbar, YouTube suggests related video search phrases, such as "beauty secrets," "cosmetics," "skin" and more. Notably, "Michelle Phan," creator and owner of the skincare line IQQU, comes up as a suggested video query.
A sampling of Phan's videos reveals that she doesn't oversell IQQU – her videos focus on offering tips that online searchers will be interested in, though she does sometimes include humorous plugs for her products. Her videos are obviously relevant to a "beauty tips" query, as the titles and descriptions clearly indicate that she is in the beauty industry and offers online tutorials. Phan's content gets its own suggested search in the video results because her content is well-optimized and its quality has earned ample views.
Marketers looking to make the most of this new YouTube development should remember to optimize their videos with key phrases accordingly, but they must also bear in mind that views seem to serve as links, determining which brands make it into the most prominent Search Topics suggestion slots. Video experts at the recent ad:tech New York conference offered some insight on how to boost online video views.