Are competitors stealing your YouTube traffic? With so much content being produced daily it is hard for a small business to stay reliant. Continue reading to find seven tactics to perform a competitive analysis for your YouTube channel and its videos.
Are you worried about competitors stealing your YouTube traffic? You’re right, there’s a fair chance that’s happening. Video marketing is a competitive game, and to win it, you need to know the competition.
It’s probably why you landed on this page, so we’ll jump right into the subject: How do you do a far-seeing YouTube competitor analysis, and what can you learn from it?
We’ll give you seven tactics to perform a competitive analysis for your YouTube channel and its videos. And we’ll also share some practical ways to use competitive analysis to improve your paid video marketing ads. Lights, camera, analyze!
Why do a competitive analysis for a YouTube channel?
Some general facts to let you grasp the significance of YouTube:
- YouTube is the world’s second most visited website.
- 62% of users watch something on YouTube every day at least once.
- The platform counts 1.7 billion unique monthly visitors.
- 99% of YouTube users also enjoy other social media platforms.
These are just a few statistics from a Hootsuite report, but clearly, YouTube is the place to be. That said, the competition is thick. So, you better start training your video muscle if you want to get your share of views and engagement.
What can you gain from a competitor analysis on YouTube?
Be honest, you always scout the competition, right? Competitive monitoring is an easy way to collect ideas and inspiration, plus get a sense of what the audience likes.
That’s really what a YouTube channel competitor analysis is all about. The only difference: Instead of sneak-peeking at your competitors, you use data that allows for accurate results and real-time monitoring.
Here’s what you can do with a data-driven competitive analysis of your YouTube competitors:
- Get insights for your own video marketing strategy.
- Find keywords to target.
- Discover audience interests and preferences.
- Measure the level of quality you need to reach and beat.
- Evaluate your video marketing performance in a competitive context.
- Set ambitious, yet realistic goals for your video marketing.
- Identify trends for the use of video in your industry.
7 tips for conducting a competitive analysis on YouTube
1. Identify top competitors using the relevant data
We assume you already know your top competitors in the market. Are they also your top competitors on YouTube?
To answer this question, let’s look at the channel differently. In addition to being the largest video-hosting platform, YouTube is also the third-largest search engine. This means, when you think “video marketing”, you also need to think “SEO”.
Look at it this way: A video’s purpose is to drive quality traffic to your site. The clips function as a touchpoint in your acquisition funnel. To evaluate the performance of a video channel, look at it from two angles:
1. How much traffic does it receive?
2. How much traffic does it send to your site?
The YouTube leaders in your industry are the ones that generate the most traffic in both directions. They’re your benchmarks.
2. Use keyword research to recognize strong traffic competitors
A keyword-research-based video SEO strategy is essential to promoting your YouTube videos and channel.
Start by identifying the trending organic search terms for your industry or niche. Find out which keywords drive the most traffic to your competition or industry leaders.
Google ranks video content on a separate SERP (Search Engine Results Page); however, the keywords are identical. The same terms that generate high volume traffic to the industry leader are relevant in video SEO for YouTube channels and videos. High-ranking video content is displayed on a unique page when you choose “video search”. Google adds video snippets and, in some cases, a timeline that highlights significant sections of the video.
This is where the best-performing YouTube videos appear, and you can learn a thing or two about them without having to watch each one.
With Similarweb Digital Marketing Intelligence, you can identify the top keywords driving YouTube traffic. Then see the SERPs for video search on these terms and investigate how the high-ranking videos implement keywords in title, description, and hashtags.
3. Understand how video fits into the overall digital marketing strategy
YouTube is one marketing channel among many, and you want to assess its role in the competitor’s digital marketing strategy. Is it a primary marketing channel or a secondary tool to supplement other acquisition channels and drive awareness? Understand how much effort competitors invest into video marketing.
Your competitive YouTube analysis should examine how video fits into the competitor’s marketing mix. Discover how much traffic the channel generates to the company’s website compared to other marketing channels.
For example, Noom makes extensive use of its YouTube channel, as the graph below depicts. The social overview displays the traffic volume each social network generates for the competitor website you’re investigating.
4. Examine the channel and individual video performance
Hop over to your competitor’s YouTube channel and take a look around. Imagine you’re a consumer. Ask yourself what you like and don’t like about the channel. Note the features your competitor uses. Keep your eyes open for user-generated videos (like reviews), and if there are external contributors.
The videos that get the most views are the ones that should make you curious. Watch them and take notes. Understand what makes these clips more popular than others. It could be the quality, the topic addressed, or a touching story, for example.
What is it that resonates with the viewer? How does the creator capture the audience? Analyze the design elements, the colors, sounds, and how the creator incorporated their brand style and language.
Study the level of viewer engagement. How many subscribers does the channel have? What’s the number of likes and shares? In the About tab, you can see when the YouTube channel was established and how many total views it’s received since.
In the Channels tab, find related channels and check them out as well – you may uncover competitors you didn’t even know you had.
Another aspect to investigate and compare is the activity level of popular channels. How frequently do they post new video content? Do they post on specific weekdays or dates? Use the insights to fill your own content calendar and social media calendar and determine posting frequency and schedule.
Investigate typical length of the videos, the structure and style. Try to focus on measurable parameters, that you can easily compare on your analysis sheet.
You can learn a lot about the different companies’ video strategies. Some may stick to a standard type of video, while others offer a mix of promotional and informational video content.
Some brands use exclusively animated videos because it’s their brand style. Find out if there’s a standard for the video style in your industry. Also, analyze which elements are typically used, such as intros with music or outros with CTA, subtitles, and so on.
6. Pay attention to the kind of reactions competitors get on their content
Viewer reactions are a source of insightful information about what the audience finds valuable. See the topics users address and pick up on their questions. Viewer comments can be an inspiration and provide material for your own videos.
You may find recurring issues mentioned by users on different competitor channels. Jot them down and address them in your video content.
7. Take note of what your YouTube competitors aren’t doing
Successful video marketers have already learned a thing or two from their mistakes. You can learn from them. Start with basic video concepts until you get the hang of it. You’ll quickly understand why experienced video makers avoid certain tricks that may seem fancy at first, but often aren’t worth the effort.
It’s better to keep it simple at first and spare yourself the hard work – and possibly the disappointment.