If you are doing content marketing for your business (whether online or offline) video is becoming a crucial tool in your playbook. If you’re lucky none of your competitors are using videos in their promotional strategies. But if you do have competitors using video, you can leverage their videos in your content marketing! This mini series within a series will show you three ways of doing that..
The first method of leveraging other people’s videos is probably the most well known: it’s using Video Responses.
So What Is A Video Response?
A video response is something that happens on YouTube – it’s basically like a ‘video comment’ on someone else’s video.
Here’s a screenshot of another video by another bass player on YouTube – and you can see that underneath the video are the top comments, and below those are a couple of video thumbnails – which are the video responses (the one highlighted by the red box is mine!)
What Are The Advantages Of Posting A Video Response?
The main benefit of a video response is that it allows you to piggy back off the traffic of a high performing video in your niche. Because the video responses thumbnails are always displayed by YouTube just underneath the top comments, there’s a good chance that a viewer of the original video will see your video thumbnail with the title of your video alongside – if it appeals to them there’s a good chance they might click on your thumbnail and go and watch your video.
If you deliver good content, combined with a strong call to action with a great ‘what’s in it for me,’ then you might just get them to take that suggested call to action. As the viewer originally came via another video, this is a great way to boost traffic to your own video.
So How Do You Create A Video Response?
First you have to find a video that you want to create a video response to. Ideally you want to post a video response to popular videos in your market area….as a matter of course you should be subscribed to the channels of the popular guys in your niche. And it’s very easy to visit someone’s channel page and view which are the most popular of their videos.
So that’s Step 1.
When you’ve found a popular video, scroll down to the ‘Comments Box’ where it says ‘Respond To This Video’ and click in that text box. The Comments Box will then expand and you’ll see a text box where you can type in a comment – but also a link that says ‘Create A Video Response:’
When you click that link, you’ll get taken to a page that looks like this:
Down the right hand side you’ll see a list of your videos that you’ve posted to your channel – and you can select which video you want to post as your video response. Or if you’ve got a gazillion videos already loaded to your channel – like me! – You can paste the ‘WATCH URL’ into the appropriate box at the bottom.
And that’s it.
However there are some caveats that go with this process.
The first caveat is that your videos can only be used as a video response once. So you need to choose which videos you are going to respond to carefully.
The second caveat is that depending on how people set up their channel when they join YouTube, they may not have video responses automatically approved. If this is the case what will happen is that they will get a message from YouTube telling them that you’ve submitted a video response, and then it’s up to them to manually approve your response. Or delete it.
So if you get that message you need to monitor the original video and see if your response appears. If it doesn’t you can either contact the person directly (and see advanced tactics below) or you can find another video in your niche and link your video response there.
The third caveat is that to really maximise your success with this tactic, you should only videos as video responses that complement the original video. That way viewers of the original video are more likely to click on your thumbnail to check out your content – and the owner of the original video is more likely to approve your video if it complements his or her content.
Talking of content, video responses are a great way to generate content ideas.
Using Video Responses To Generate Content Idea
As I said above, you should be following the top players in your niche. It’s a good exercise from time to time to find two or three high performing videos and create video content that complements each of those videos. You know there’s a demand for this topic from your prospective audience because these videos are high performing – so creating that content is a good idea anyway.
When you’ve created that content then you can post it as a video response. If your video response gets accepted, you’ll get piggy back traffic from the original videos. Plus you have new content to go on your YouTube channel and all the other platforms you post your video too. Win-win.
Video Responses are powerful tools – there’s some advanced ways you can use them too.
Advanced Video Response Tactics
The first advanced way to use video responses is as a way of creating relationships with other players in your market space. Rather than just post a video response – which might piss them off depending on their personality – go to their website/blog first and maybe post some comments on some of their posts.
Then once you have started building a relationship you could drop them an email saying something like: “Hey, I saw your video entitled How To__________ and I loved it. I’ve created a video that takes one of those points and goes into it in more depth which I think might be good for your audience, would you mind if I posted my video as a video response.”
If the other guy agrees, then you’ve got a win. If he doesn’t accept video responses – and some people don’t – then you’ve likely still got a win, because he’ll email you back and tell you he doesn’t accept video responses, but he’ll thank you for asking. And you’ve taken your relationship further…maybe you can escalate to a guest post, or a JV, or something else.
And even if he doesn’t accept the video response, the content should still be posted on your channel anyway and there may be other videos you can post it as a response too.
The second advanced way to use video responses is to use them with your own videos. The YouTube algorithm views video responses favourably – so if you’ve got a popular video plus two or three similar but less popular videos, then simply add the less popular videos as video responses to the popular video. This improves the popular video in YouTube’s algorithm so more people see it. And those people will see your video thumbnails underneath the original video and may click on those – exposing them to more of your content. Again, win-win.
The third advanced way to use video responses is to create a ‘video blogger network’ of four or five video bloggers, and co-ordinate your posting activities so that you get them to video respond to one of your videos, and then as a quid pro quo you respond to one of their videos. As I said above, the YouTube algorithm views video responses favourably – so your video with their video responses will rank higher and get more views. And their videos – which you’ve responded to – will get more views and hopefully your video response will piggy back some of those extra views.
This is a ‘rising tide floats all boats’ kind of a tactic. And again, all parties should benefit. (If you’re really creative you should try this strategy with folks you really admire and want to build long term relationships with.)
Today we’ve looked at using YouTube’s Video Response feature to piggy back traffic to your videos. This is a great way to leverage other people’s videos – but it does involve creating your own videos. The rest of this mini-series within a series will look at ways to leverage other people’s videos without creating any fresh videos! So stay tuned.