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A little while back, I shared an update of how we’re using YouTube for Long Tail Pro.

YouTube reaches over 200 million people per month, so it’s no secret that figuring out how to use YouTube as a marketing tool can really be a game changer for almost any business.

The problem is, many people go about YouTube all wrong.

Check out this short video from Jon Penberthy which explains exactly why keyword research matters for YouTube, just like it does for your blog:


As Jon pointed out, many people make the same mistake in YouTube marketing as they do with their blog content:

Ready, Fire, Aim. 

That’s really what recording a video with no particular “problem” or keyword in mind is like.

You’re creating content before you really know what the best topic is for you to target.

For bloggers, it’s a recipe for posting content that gets buried in the trillions of pages Google indexes.

For YouTubers, (assuming that’s a word), it means a video that probably gets very few views and in turn, very few leads for your business.

Keyword Research For YouTube

One of the simplest solutions to this problem, which Jon addressed in the video, is to dig into keyword research and apply it to YouTube. This means using keyword research tools like Long Tail Pro and Ubersuggest and applying the same principles that you would when doing regular KW Research.

In addition to people who search things directly on YouTube, you might be surprised by how often YouTube videos show up in regular Google search results.

ReelSEO referenced a recent study which found that 55% of Google searches contain video results. Of those, 80% are videos posted on YouTube.

Number of Google results with video

The point is, people don’t need to be on YouTube in order to find your video. So doing the same kind of keyword research for those specific, long tail keywords makes a lot of sense when it comes to YouTube as well.

How To Find Keywords For YouTube

Now that we know finding out what people are actually searching for is an important first step, how do you figure out what they are searching for?

Here are a few ideas:

  1. Use YouTube’s Suggestions

This is one we’ve used for Long Tail Pro and it’s proven effective. It’s also very easy to apply the principle to your business.

The exact strategy actually came from a couple of guys who built a huge YouTube channel about basketball (ILoveBasketballTV is their YouTube channel). Specifically, one guy who goes by “Coach Rock” would use YouTube to provide really specific tips on how to jump higher, shoot better, and much more.

You can read more about their strategy here.

In short, you’d type in a word or phrase that your audience is very interested in.

Something that is your bread and butter.

Then, you simply take note of all the suggested searches YouTube provides and those become topics for your videos.

Here’s what it looks like when you type in “blogging:”

YouTube keyword ideas

These suggestions aren’t random. They’re based on user behavior and the most common things people end up searching after they start with the word “blogging.”

So out of this, I might create one video that focuses solely on “blogging for money” and another that is about “blogging for beginners” etc.

This way, you can address the topic very directly and ideally link to a lead magnet or page on your website that is very closely related to the topic.

2. Check Your Competition

“Stealing” from your competition is a pretty common and effective strategy in blogging.

Brian Dean teaches the Skyscraper Technique where you find the most popular posts in your niche, make something better, then reach out to everyone who links to your competitor and let them know you’ve built something better.

We’ve written about using a tool like SEMRush to discover what keywords your competitors rank for and then create content also targeted towards that keyword.

You can apply these same concepts to get keyword ideas for YouTube.

Look at the channels of your competitors or of similar businesses and see what is working best for them.

Once you click on their username, you can navigate to their “videos” page and then sort by the most popular:

competitors keywords in Youtube

From there, you should not be stealing their content – but you should be looking for some keywords that pop out and give you ideas for videos you can create.

In the screenshot above from the ILoveBasketballTV page, maybe I see that the video about Kevin Durant’s moves is doing well – so I decide to create my own videos showing how to emulate different moves that Kevin Durant is known for.

3. Use Long Tail Pro

We mentioned earlier that YouTube videos show up quite often in the search results on Google.

So using Long Tail Pro to find keyword ideas, particularly low competition long tail keywords is definitely a strategy that applies to YouTube as well.

What’s more, when you find an excellent keyword you may want to create BOTH a blog post and a YouTube video focused on that keyword.

This gives you additional opportunities to rank and pull in traffic from both Google and YouTube, plus you should be able to record a video without too much extra effort since you’ve already done the research and outline when writing your blog post.

So as you’re using Long Tail Pro, don’t forget to consider video as a medium to deliver your content.

[su_note]Ready to start finding keywords? Click Here to take a 10 day free trial of Long Tail Pro and find out what your customers are searching Google for. [/su_note]

Why Targeted Keywords Matter

As we wrap up, I want to reemphasize another point Jon made in the video at the beginning of this post.

One of the biggest reasons for targeting specific keywords with your YouTube content is because it allows you to solve a specific problem.

When you do that, you have a much better opportunity to make a relevant offer to the person watching the video, and increase your chances of converting them into a lead.

Here’s an Example:

In one of our videos, we target “Weebly SEO Tips” which is a short video where we share one actionable piece of SEO advice for people who build their website on Weebly. In the video and in the written description, we link to a lead magnet where we have a free PDF with additional advice on this same topic.

So we’re essentially saying, if you liked this – here’s more free information on the same topic.

By targeting a specific keyword, we can also deliver a specific offer and be confident that the viewer will be interested in it.

Wrap Up

Whether you are just beginning with YouTube or you already have an established channel, this advice is pretty simple to run with.

Start finding more long tail, specific keyword ideas for YouTube and then build your videos to hone in on those exact things. Then, make sure the offer you are making in the video is going to be relevant – not something too generic for that topic.

No need to over-complicate things – just get out there and start.

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