4 Tips to Incorporate YouTube into Your Social Media Strategy

From humble beginnings in 2005 as an online video-sharing platform, YouTube is now one of the titans of tech. In 2019, two billion people logged onto the website every day—and they watched a billion hours of video every day.1

And if you think these viewers are only watching crazy pet videos and people cooking tiny food, you’re wrong. Professional organizations from the largest Fortune 500 companies down to local nonprofits and everyone in between use this effective video platform for marketing.

Well over half of businesses use YouTube to share video content.2 And 60% of marketers believe increasing their YouTube promotional budget will grow their business.3 Why? Because not only is YouTube the largest video-sharing platform on the planet, but video marketing works—64% of consumers make a purchase after watching videos.4 People are turning to video to help inform their decisions on everything from footwear to finances to finding critical addiction treatment services.

How to Use YouTube to Market Your Addiction Treatment Center

Prospective patients who discover your treatment center on YouTube will likely have a similar response to seeing your videos and learning more about the services you provide. Today we’re taking a look at ways you can leverage your YouTube channel and incorporate a robust video content marketing plan into your digital marketing strategy.

1. Create a Brand Account

YouTube and Google accounts go hand-in-hand. In fact, YouTube is not only the second most used search engine after Google, YouTube feeds directly into your overall SEO and your ranking on Google’s search engine results (SERP) page. Because your treatment center’s YouTube channel connects directly into the rest of your digital marketing initiatives, it’s important to set yourself up for success by creating a strong brand account.

If you haven’t already, claim your Google Business Profile listing. From there, create a YouTube channel by linking your Google brand account. Setting up your channel this way is essential because multiple users can manage brand accounts. You never want to get into a situation where only one person can access or control any of your digital assets.

2. Brand Your Channel

As with Google Business Profile or any other online listing, we strongly recommend completing each part of your addiction treatment center’s YouTube profile and channel listing. The chances of your video displaying in search results, being viewed, and getting followed will be much greater with a complete profile.

An often-overlooked channel setup detail is a solid channel description. Your channel description should use some of your top keywords (but not too many) and offer a helpful overview of your behavioral health center, your mission and goals, and a preview of the content viewers can expect on the channel. The channel description is where you should link your other social media pages and website.

Graphics are another vital element of your YouTube channel. Add a high-resolution logo for the channel icon at a maximum of 2MB and measuring 800×800 pixels. And don’t forget the banner space! Use this area to promote upcoming events, an especially impactful video, or even a panoramic photo of your treatment center. The image should also be high-resolution but no larger than 6MB and measuring 2560×1140 pixels.

Also, consider adding a few featured channels to your profile. The channels you choose should be authoritative voices in your field. If you aren’t sure where to start, check out the Smart Recovery channel or the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services channel. Both of these organizations are outstanding examples of behavioral health YouTube channels.

3. Understand Your Audience

Knowing who you’re targeting is essential in every aspect of marketing, including YouTube. By and large, YouTube is popular with people aged 15-35, as 77% of that demographic group claim to be regular platform users.5 But usage doesn’t decrease significantly until users are 56 or older—70% of people aged 46 to 55 frequent YouTube. Use is also evenly split between genders, with 72% of both men and women using the platform.

What does this mean? To put it simply, almost everyone uses YouTube.

But you can take your data gathering to another level by using YouTube’s analytics feature. Monitoring your analytics will help you understand who is viewing your channel and videos, whether they’re watching all or just a portion of your content, and much more.

The more you understand who’s watching your videos, the better you’ll be able to refine your messaging and reach the people who need your services. Make sure that your content is approachable, engaging, and most of all accurate.

4. Don’t Forget About SEO

Your SEO strategy doesn’t end with your website; instead, you should build your social media campaigns, including your YouTube channel, to support your overall SEO goals. There’s actually a YouTube recommendation algorithm determining 70% of what people watch.6 But optimizing your channel and videos for search is pretty straightforward. Here are some steps you can take to engage effective SEO on your channel:

  1. Give your videos a strong title by incorporating a keyword or two. Not sure which keywords to use? Check out Google Trends or Google Ads’ Keyword Planner for inspiration.
  2. Create a keyword-laden description by incorporating the keywords you find when researching your title. Use these keywords as early in your description as possible, but make sure that the instances feel organic and contribute to the content.
  3. Make the most of your space by keeping the critical information in the first 300 characters before the “Show More” button appears. But don’t stop there! YouTube gives users 5,000 characters (including 15 hashtags) to describe their videos. For maximum impact, get as close to the limit as possible.
  4. Design a custom thumbnail image, because 90% of top-performing YouTube videos use custom thumbnails.7 Your image should be high-resolution but no larger than 2MB and measuring 1280×20 pixels.

YouTube is an effective social media marketing tool that’s here to stay. Contact us today at 888.307.7304 to talk about your video marketing strategy and how you can use YouTube to help more clients who need you.


For a list of references, please contact us.