There are now more than 1 billion YouTube users, based in 61 countries and spread across 60 languages, watching more than 6 billion hours of video every single month.
This represents a massive opportunity for businesses of all sizes and across industries to raise your profile and engage with your stakeholders worldwide. Best of all it is free to upload your company videos.
Imagine if you could say to a potential customer in some far-flung country that they could get a much clearer understanding of your company, your value and the way you work by having a view of your videos on YouTube? You could also have product demonstrations, show recipes etc.
What better platform to communicate who you are, what you stand for and what you offer worldwide in an instant.
So here are a few examples of how micro and small businesses are using YouTube to spread the word across the world, increasing revenue and building the business on a better footing.
From one-woman shop to global niche phenomena
Jenny Doan, matriarch of the Doan family launched the Missouri Star Quilting company in 2008 with a quilting machine, and a tumbledown brick building in one-stoplight downtown Hamilton with a population of 1,800 about 60 miles northeast of Kansas City. USA.
By using YouTube the company is now the largest shipper of pre-cut quilting fabrics anywhere in the world, and the largest private employer in rural Caldwell county. It has 50 employees and ships out a thousand orders a day
Today that “little” business has nearly 50 employees, and might be the biggest seller of pre-cut quilt pieces in the world.
The business started slowly in 2008 as yet another quilt shop in a small village in Mid-America but took off after a few months when one of Jenny’s sons asked if she would like to do a tutorial for a company website. Good call. Put legs and a smile on a bolt of the most vibrant, flowery fabric in the store — that’s Jenny Doan.
“Sure,” she answered her son. Then she added, “What’s a tutorial?”
Today those YouTube segments have been viewed by more than 30 million people worldwide. Watching, people say, is like sitting down with an old friend. A French magazine came to town to feature the business in an article and video.
Letters and cards — fan mail, really — pour into the store in Hamilton. “You have filled my war-torn world with colour,” a woman wrote from Iraq.
Have a look a one of the Jenny’s tutorials (yes, it has been viewed by more than 1 million people) http://tinyurl.com/6nbpl4w
BrewDog – YouTube videos highlight the brand’s exoteric image
BrewDog claims to be Scotland’s largest independently-owned brewery producing about 120,000 bottles per month for export all over the world. It was founded in 2007.
Rock ‘n roll’ is about as close a description as you can get to BrewDog’s brand. It will always pick up a fight and try to upset the status quo. For example, in response to criticism of its particularly strong range of beers, BrewDog released ‘Nanny State’ – at 1.1% ABV, it was a very weak beverage. A great name though.
Before the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics BrewDog revealed the world’s first ever ‘protest beer’, designed to mock Russian President Vladimir Putin’s discriminatory legislation introduced ahead of the Games. They did send a case of the beer called ‘Hello My Name is Vladimir’ to President Putin.
Globally it has developed a strong following with young, non-conformist beer-lovers and the company’s videos all emphasize this whole ethos upending the status quo. Have a look at http://youtu.be/lAC1IaMO8CQ
Innis & Gunn uses YouTube to highlight heritage and taste
Innis & Gunn is a specialist independent brewing company based in Edinburgh. Established in 2003, their beer have become the most popular British bottled beer sold in Canada and is now the most popular imported beer in Sweden. 70% of the company’s turnover comes from export.
The beer was originally developed as a way of flavouring the barrels by whisky distiller William Grant for its ale cask reserve whisky. The original plan was for the beer to be discarded after it had flavoured the barrel, but the brewers noted that the process had an agreeable effect on the beer and thus aging the beer became an end in itself.
Its brand values are as far removed from BrewDog’s as possible, although they are both microbrewers based in Scotland. Innis & Gunn is all about taste, Scottish heritage and enjoying beer responsibly often with food. This is all reflected in the company’s videos on YouTube. http://youtu.be/L5SizdkG5Cw