YouTube and Video Marketing needs to be thoroughly updated

I’m the author of YouTube and Video Marketing: An Hour a Day. Sybex, an imprint of Wiley, published the first edition on Aug. 17, 2009. Back then, Seth Godin, the author of 18 best-selling books, including Tribes, said, “Jam-packed with wisdom, this book will reward anyone willing to put in the time to become a viral video master.”

Fortunately, lots of people bought my “popular and empowering book.” So, Wiley asked me to write a second edition, which Sybex published on Nov. 1, 2011. Guy Kawasaki, the co-founder of, former chief evangelist of Apple, and author of 10 books, including Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions, said, “Greg Jarboe gets to the heart of why YouTube video marketing is so powerful. This book will help you create video that enchants, inspires, and engages your viewers.”

Now, I’m still getting royalty checks from Wiley. So, people are still buying my step-by-step guide. It’s bundled with three other books in the second edition of the Marketing with Social Media: An Hour a Day Collection, so maybe I’m riding their coattails.

But, I need to ask you a favor. Please tell all your friends, family, and colleagues to stop buying my book. The second edition of YouTube and Video Marketing was published eight years ago, for Pete’s sake. That means it needs to be thoroughly updated. In fact, the only chapter that isn’t woefully out-of-date is “Chapter 1: A Short History of YouTube.” But, that chapter is only 26 pages long. And the book is 504 pages long. So, if you do the math, then this means 5% of my content needs minor edits. But, the other 95% needs to be totally rewritten from scratch.

Why? Because virtually every video marketing strategy and YouTube best practice in this day-by-day, step-by-step guide doesn’t work anymore. Let me give you an example. Chapter 9 tells readers to “trust by verify YouTube Insight.” In December 2011, a month after the second edition of my book was published, I wrote an article for Search Engine Watch entitled, “YouTube Analytics replaces YouTube Insight.” Unfortunately, I couldn’t replace the 42 pages in Chapter 9 with new ones that told readers how to track, measure, and analyze their video marketing results with YouTube Analytics.

In October 2012, 11 months after the second edition of my book was published, “watch time” replaced “view count” in the YouTube algorithm, adjusting the ranking of videos in YouTube search to reward engaging videos that keep viewers watching. Unfortunately, I couldn’t replace Chapter 7, which told readers how to optimize their video for YouTube. So, the strategic insights and tactical advice in another 38 pages became obsolete. All I could do is write another article for Search Engine Watch entitled, “YouTube Algorithm Change: ‘Time Watched’ Key to Higher Video Search Rankings.”

And, if I’m ever asked to write a third edition of YouTube and Video Marketing, then I’d also have to totally restructure the table of contents. Why? Because 10 of the 11 chapters in the second edition are about YouTube. Only Chapter 6 urged readers to “Explore YouTube Alternatives.” And it was 36 pages long. So, do the math again and 93% of my book was about YouTube. Now, that made sense back in 2011 when viable alternatives to YouTube were hard to find. But today, the video marketing landscape has dramatically changed.

According to Tubular Intelligence, 8.8 million accounts uploaded 96.5 million videos to YouTube in the last 365 days, which got 5.6 trillion views and 96.2 billion engagements. By comparison, 4.6 million accounts uploaded 111 million videos to Facebook in the last 365 days, which got 5.7 trillion views and 178 billion engagements. Over the same period, 2.8 million accounts uploaded 95.2 million videos to Instagram, which got 3.0 trillion views and 298 billion engagements. And 4.3 million accounts uploaded 40.2 million videos to Twitter, which got 701 billion views and 30.5 billion engagements.

Social Video Marketing: An Hour a Day

So, a title for a book that reflects this multi-platform world would need to be Social Video Marketing: An Hour a Day. And if my publisher wanted to keep this new book roughly the same length as my first two and used “views” as a rough proxy of potential reader interest, then I’d have 4 chapters on YouTube, 4 chapters on Facebook, 2 chapters on Instagram, and 1 chapter on Twitter.

But, here’s what I’d tell my publisher: YouTube and Facebook don’t have the same definition of a “view.” YouTube says you pay for a “view” when a viewer watches 30 seconds of your video – or the duration if it’s shorter than 30 seconds – or engages with your video, whichever comes first. But, Facebook says you pay for a “view” when a video is displayed in a user’s news feed for 3 seconds or more, even if the person doesn’t actually click on the video to watch with the sound turned on.

Back in January 2016, I spoke at an offsite meeting of the global marketing team of a Fortune 50 company to recommend updates to their video marketing strategy. It was held at the Hotel InterContinental in Madrid, Spain. And when I got to the slide that explained a YouTube “view” could be up to 10 times longer than a Facebook “view” people started squirming in their seats. And I realized that I’d just made everyone uncomfortable because the CMO was sitting in the back row and the company’s multi-platform video strategy had been shaped by the mistaken assumption that a “view” was a standardized metric that could be used as a KPI.

So, if my publisher wanted the same number of chapters about YouTube and Facebook in a new book about Social Video Marketing – because both platforms have tallied about the same number of views during the past year – then I could accommodate that request as long as my publisher didn’t mind that the chapters about YouTube could be up to 10 times longer than the chapters about Facebook.

And just for arguments sake, let’s say my publisher doesn’t have a problem with that. Why? Because potential readers often look at the table of contents before buying a book, but they rarely count how many pages are in each chapter. So, a quick scan of the chapter titles in Social Video Marking would leave the impression that this new member of a family of premium-quality Sybex books provided a complete or comprehensive description of the topic.

So, a book by that title might do well on its own. However, but it might also have a negative impact on the sales of the Marketing with Social Media: An Hour a Day Collection. The other three books in this bundle include:

  • Facebook Marketing: An Hour a Day, 2nd Edition, by Chris Treadaway and Mari Smith.
  • Twitter Marketing: An Hour a Day by Hollis Thomases.
  • Social Media Marketing: An Hour a Day, 2nd Edition, by Dave Evans.

So, removing YouTube and Video Marketing: An Hour a Day, 2nd Edition, from the bundle and replacing it with Social Video Marketing: An Hour a Day would eliminate any mention of “YouTube” – which isn’t good – and adds a second book with “Social” in the title – which is bad. So, maybe publishing a book by this title wouldn’t be prudent at this juncture.

YouTube Marketing: An Hour a Day

What Wiley really needs to publish are two new books. One would be entitled, YouTube Marketing: An Hour a Day, and the other might be facetiously entitled, Instagram Marketing: An Hour a Night. If you don’t get the joke, consider this: There are already 14 members in Wiley’s Hour-A-Day family. In addition to the 4 books mentioned above, the Hour-A-Day family includes books on Pinterest Marketing, Mobile Marketing, LinkedIn Marketing, Display Advertising, Website Optimization, Internet Marketing, E-Mail Marketing, Affiliate Program Management, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and Pay-Per-Click Search Engine Marketing, So, at some point, readers will run out of hours in the day and have to start reading an hour a night if they want a complete or comprehensive understanding of digital marketing.

Actually, even Fortune 50 brands don’t want their global marketing teams to spend 15 hours a day learning everything they could about digital marketing. Most draw the line at 8. Although, I did teach a classroom training program in Manila, the Philippines, in August 2017 that ran 9 hours a day for 5 days. But, that was a special situation that enabled the marketing teams from two different organizations to get the required number of didactic hours in OMCP-approved courses covering 9 specific disciplines that were needed to prepare professionals for the OMCA certification exam for digital marketers.

To be honest, most professionals want to learn everything they need to know about YouTube marketing in 24 hours, tops. And they’re shocked, shocked to discover that speed-reading my book back in 2011 would take marketers, consultants, and small-business owners an hour a day for 200 days!

And YouTube marketing has gotten harder over the years, not easier. And if you think that learning how to master YouTube marketing has gotten too hard, remember what Jimmy Dugan (Tom Hanks) said in the 1992 film, A League of Their Own: “It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it.”

So, do you really want to learn 12% of what you need to know to create a YouTube strategy to help their brand stand out in today’s evolving digital era? I didn’t think so. Can I trim the 200 hours down to, say, 64? Well, that would cover about 32% of what you need to know about YouTube marketing.

Now, if you already have 5,000 hours of YouTube marketing experience OR a post-secondary degree plus 2,000 hours of YouTube marketing experience, then I could teach you what you need to know to create a YouTube strategy to help their brand stand out in today’s evolving digital era in 64 hours. How could I do that? By building on your practical experience in YouTube marketing and the conceptual knowledge that a post-secondary degree is supposed to provide. But, I can’t do it from scratch.

How do I tell that you probably still need 64 hours of advanced training and instruction? Well, I wrote an article for Tubular Insights in November 2015 that was entitled, “YouTube Changes at a Rate of 33% a Year: Has a Serious Impact on Video Marketing.” And even if you have thousands of hours of YouTube marketing experience and a post-secondary degree, you don’t need to do the math to realize that you probably need to spend about 64 hours learning what’s changed in just the last year.

Now, there are several ways to do that. You can read dozens of articles like the ones I’ve written over the past year for Search Engine Journal, the vidIQ blog, and Tubular Insights, including:

You can attend industry events like VidCon, where I’ve been a speaker in the Industry Track. Heck, you can even invite me to speak at an offsite meeting of your global marketing team, teach a classroom training program, or hold a series of upskilling webinars. Or, you can always wait to see if a publisher asks me to write a new book and then wait another 12 months until it gets written and published.

Now, I realize that this might not happen. And, if it does, then it will take a lot of time and effort to write another 500 pages that help readers to “craft video marketing strategies that deliver.” But, remember, “It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it.”


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