Agencies, Twitter’s important, but not as important as YouTube

Professional communicators and agencies make up the bulk of my clients.  So I do feel a responsibility to them, and to my industry, to be informative, especially when I notice a problem that needs fixing.

Lately, that problem has been YouTube video.

Take, for example, a well-respected local social media firm.  Social media, as in YouTube.  This firm has not uploaded a single video in a year.

Do you think you would catch them not TWEETING for a year?  Don’t you think it.  They tweet several times a day.  Although those tweets don’t show up that well on search engine results.  And have a lifespan of what, under 5 seconds?  And then effectively disappear into the ether?

YouTube has a longer shelf life than either Twitter or Facebook

Well, what does the data say?  Bit.ly studied the lifespan of a link and measured activity clicking on that link.   On average, Twitter was the lowest and YouTube was the highest.

Links posted on Twitter had an average viability of 2.8 hours.  Now try searching on Google for something you posted on Twitter last week, and let me know how that works out for you.

Links posted on Facebook had an average life span of 3.2 hours.  In other words, people are still clicking on links initially posted for about 3.2 hours after they are first put up.  Then they’re gone.  I don’t know how often you find search results for Facebook for your brand, but I get Google alerts and Yahoo alerts everyday, and I post on Facebook everyday, and not one of them has popped up.  Facebook Page updates are just not optimized that well for search.

Links posted on YouTube are still getting clicked 7.4 hours, on average, after they are put up.  And they don’t disappear.  Those videos stay neatly categorized on your Channel, and the links contained in the video descriptions and on your Channel continue to deliver action-generating click through rates.

Hello, Your Clients are on YouTube (Twitter, not so much)

Do you think more of their clients go on Twitter or YouTube?  Well, let’s see, according to the latest ComScore results, Google properties (which include YouTube) is #1.  We know YouTube is the third most visited website on the Internet.  Facebook is fourth.  Twitter is the 34th in a ranking of 50.  And 5% of users account for most of the activity, and sadly, most of the activity is spit out by autobots.

PR and digital agencies think everyone is Twitter because THEY are on Twitter. Advertising and marketing professionals make up the fourth largest industry population on Twitter. They are over-represented on Twitter.  They think Twitter matters a lot to their clients because Twitter matters a lot to them, and they invest a lot of energy into  it.  Guess what.  It might not matter that much for your brand.  Certainly, not to the exclusion of tactics that will work harder for you.

Did you know that 42% of senior executives made a business decision, such as a purchase, based on an online video that they had watched?  Try saying that about a tweet!

If you were a client, which would matter more to you while you were trying to learn more about an agency — a frequently churning Twitter profile?  Or a consistently updated YouTube Channel featuring videos of professionals you can see and hear?

The truth is, you don’t have to choose.  You can have both.  I think you should have both, to do a decent marketing job.  But don’t neglect your YouTube Channel for the Twitter profile.  If one has to go, let it be Twitter.

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About Mary Fletcher Jones

Mary Fletcher Jones is a public relations and marketing consultant, and owns Fletcher Prince (www.FletcherPrince.com). Follow Mary on Twitter @FletcherPrince.

Posted on September 14, 2011, in YouTube Video Tips and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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