Our friends at TubeMogul have an interesting graphic out today that shows that 50% of all YouTube video views occur within the first 6 days of publication. That’s what happens when nearly 24 hours of new video are uploaded to the site every minute. TubeMogul suggests that this means you should be uploading content on a regular basis – to always be resetting that cycle for your viewership.
But what about the other 50% of the traffic? And, which traffic is more valuable? The first 50% or the second 50%? I think it depends.
If you’re a big brand like Toyota or the NBA then that early traffic is probably the most critical. It’s your brand awareness, viral seeding moment where you get the widest reach and most momentum in any spreadability that’s going to occur around the content. At SXSW a YouTube representative said that half of viral traffic for a video in the first 48 hours occurs as a result of the video being embeded.
But, if you’re a small business it might be that the last 50% – the long tail – of your video traffic is more important. That’s because the second half represents people that had to work to find you. They were looking for you specifically or for information about a problem you’re solving. And while the views are slow and steady it may be that they are the most engaged and higher converting views when compared to the “head” traffic.
Consider Google Adwords. If you buy the top position in AdWords you certainly get the lion’s share of traffic. But that traffic is often less targeted and lower converting than positions 2-6. Why? Because with more traffic comes more unqualified people. But the people who actually read through the ads and find exactly what they’re looking for, while fewer in number, tend to convert at a much higher rate.
I believe that’s an appropriate paradigm to consider when looking at the “back half” of video views on YouTube – particularly for small businesses using video as a lead or customer acquisition tool.
What do you think?