Why This Matters To B2B Marketers
Before we get into the specifics of how this new YouTube commenting system will work, let’s talk briefly about why it matters. To marketers, and B2B marketers in particular. The customers’ path to purchase is often impacted by video. A recent Forbes study surveyed 300 senior executives at Fortune 500 companies—you know, the people who make decisions on products and services they want to purchase. Here’s what they said:
- 75% of senior executives surveyed reported they watch work-related videos on business-related websites at least weekly, 52% watch work-related videos on YouTube at least weekly.
- More than half of senior executives share videos with colleagues at least weekly.
- Work-related videos can drive senior executives to action: more than 65% reported they visited a vendor’s website after seeing a video.
Have I got your attention now? I’ll bet I do. Video is, without question, a growing part of the customer’s journey to purchase. Here’s a nifty chart from the study that shows just how video impacts lead generation.
How G+ Will Power YouTube Comments
So, this change is really pretty simple. It’s designed to make video comments more relevant—and more to the point, searchable. Conversations that are the most relevant to you will be served up where you can see them. Yet another step on the journey to complete and total personalization of all content, everywhere. And it makes sense, doesn’t it?
Here’s how it works. Much in the same way search results are aggregated when you search for something on Google—your social circles impact YouTube comments. The peeps that Google knows you know (and probably trust) will appear higher than any others. Freak you out? Yeah, it’s a little Big Brother-ish, but it’s a new Google-fueled world order. And you need to get used to it, because this will just happen more and more until it’s something we don’t even think about..
So, for example, let’s say you’re watching the latest video from Kid President, that adorable cherubic creation from Soul Pancake (you can see him in the image embedded below). With the new G+ commenting feature implemented, you’ll be able to see how your friends and those in your circles felt about it. Cool, huh? Actually, it’s as smart as it is cool. We trust our friends. And we’re always more interested in their comments, opinions and feedback than we are random strangers’. It only makes sense that Google, who already knows who our friends are, gives that to us first.
Why This Matters
YouTube is the second-biggest search engine in the world; don’t underestimate its power. Google anything, and you’ll get YouTube results. If your customers and prospects are searching for information, especially as it relates to something you do or sell, don’t you want them finding your content? And even more important, if there are comments on video content you’ve shared or are featured in, don’t you want it to be comments that are personalized to the searcher? You get it now.
Here’s some more detail about how the new features will work:
- Conversations you care about will move to the top of the channel’s discussion tab. Comments from the video creator, people in your Google+ circles, popular personalities and the more engaged discussions will be at the top of the list (you’ll still have the option to view the newest comments first.)
- You’ll be able to start a conversation publicly or privately in the same way that you do on Google+. Your comments can be seen by everyone on YouTube and G+ or, if you prefer, only people in your Circles or specifically named people. Replies will be threaded, making it easier to follow a conversation.
- New tools will be added to allow you to moderate comments before they are added or block certain words so that you’ll be able to weed out those unwelcome visitors. The ability to “whitelist” trusted commenters will also be available so that some comments can be automated to save time moderating.
Even better than reading about it, YouTube provided an example of what comments will look like once the implementation of these features is complete. Take a look:
You want it, don’t you? Well, hang on. YouTube says that the update is already being rolled out, but it won’t be completed until later this year, so it’s hard to say when individuals will start to see the changes.
While this enhancement might not rock your world at the moment, it should. There has never been a time where video is more important as part of your overall content marketing strategy than it is today, especially in the B2B space.
If you want to know more, check out the full announcement on YouTube’s Official Blog (and the interesting discussion that followed), and then pop back over here to add your voice to the debate about this new development.
Other Stuff On This Topic You Should Read:
MarketingProfs: Why Video Plays a Crucial Role in The Rise of Content Marketing