Los Angeles, CA. (07/09/2009)…PR firms are continually finding new ways to exploit the potential of search engines to spotlight their clients and get the word out about the products and services they have to offer. Search engine optimization and purchasing ad keywords help to get clients’ websites ranked high in search engine results. For years the top dogs in the search engine arena have been Yahoo! and Google. But according to the latest figures from comScore, Yahoo! has now been eclipsed by an unlikely competitor—YouTube.
YouTube is unique as a search engine, because every search performed there is for a video. And once it became clear that video searches were generating massive amounts of traffic to YouTube’s site, it was only a matter of time before marketers saw the potential for using that interest to their advantage.
A couple years ago YouTube instituted a program called “Sponsored Videos,” which is similar to the Google AdWords keyword-purchase program. Video owners can purchase keywords to promote certain individual videos, in the same way that website owners purchase keywords from Google AdWords to promote their sites. The program is still in the early stages of development, and YouTube personnel are keeping mum about the numbers of keywords available, pricing, and how extensive the program will eventually be.
But the idea is intriguing and filled with possibilities. A recent survey by BurstMedia showed that nearly 70% of the respondents actively view videos on the Internet on a regular basis, and people aged 35 to 54 are just as likely to view video content as people aged 18-24. An eMarketer study found that more than 120 million Americans view videos online at least once a month, and 76% of them tell someone about a video they have watched. Of the video viewers who have watched ads with online videos, 44% of them have taken action upon what they saw in the ads.
With all of this interest in watching videos online, it doesn’t take much of a leap to realize the huge PR potential offered by video searches; hence the development of sponsored videos. Spending money to encourage viewers to watch a video is not a direct approach to e-commerce, but it is a new concept that savvy marketers are learning how to use. For example, if a person searches YouTube for a video about iPhones, the sponsored video links at the top of the search results may include videos from manufacturers about peripheral products that work with iPhones. The person searching for videos about iPhones may see links to those advertising videos and be enticed into clicking them to learn more.
Video search engine optimization using purchased keywords is opening the door for PR firms to tap into the massive amounts of traffic flowing through video search engines such as YouTube, AOL Video, Google Video, and Yahoo! Video. As long as those millions of Internet visitors keep watching user-posted videos, they are a captive audience for sponsored videos as well.