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User Engagement

February 28, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

Jeremy Scott over at ReelSEO makes some critical points in this post:

How Long Until YouTube Views Lose All Meaning?

As we’ve seen in a number of other situations, the number of hits is a lot less important than getting the correct hits. In general, it’s all fine to get a million views, but if it only leads to 2-3 key decision makers it can’t be considered a success. Far better to hit the 500 people most likely to make a difference – purchase your company’s products, make connections for you – than it is to hit the random eyes that look at your content and never take anything further.

Jeremy’s points about the “SEO Expert” and his artificially inflated numbers are much more concerning if all the executives want to know is “how many hits did we get.” The raw numbers not only don’t tell the whole story, they tell a very misleading tale of the impact your piece may have.

So how to address that question? First, establish before anything is published what you are looking for. Generally you can’t make a video go viral, and it’s probably not what you and the company are after anyway. Second, be sure to set the stage and the expectations with your management. Make sure they understand the difference between views and meaningful metrics; user engagement, not simply watchers. Finally, don’t forget that drawing the viewers in is only the first step to building a successful interaction. Make sure you include a call to action, a way to connect, or some other step that allows your real targets a way to reach you and go to the next level.

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