May 18, 2017
It is no longer enough to post your video content on YouTube and forget about it. What is now needed is a consistent and structured approach that asks what kind of audience your content is aimed at and why. Maximizing and growing a loyal YouTube channel subscriber base while building brand value means catering to different audiences.
The Help, Hub, Hero strategy is one way to do this. Not only does it help grab viewers’ attention, but it ensures that you continue to post engaging content to build up that all-important, loyal subscriber base.
Help Hub Hero is a tried and tested way of segmenting your content across three tiers to advertise your brand and build buzz, target specific interest groups with engaging content, and encourage exposure via search through helpful and informative content.
Let’s explore each element of the help, hub, hero model.
This type of content is used specifically to raise awareness, preferably on a large scale. This ‘go big’ method is used when advertising with the intention of reaching the mainstream and helping create brand awareness, often at the time of a new product launch. Hero content is often narrative in structure, highly emotive or entertaining and should reflect your brand values and personality. As such, hero videos will usually involve a lot more budget to produce because they are designed for maximum exposure.
One of the most obvious examples of hero content is the Felix Baumgartner’s supersonic freefall from 128km up from Redbull. The video followed Baumgartner rising to the edge of space in a hot air balloon, before breaking the world record for the highest freefall jump by leaping back down to earth. It currently has more than 41 million views, and is still rising, making it one of the more successful examples of hero content.
Once you have posted your hero content, the hope is that some of those viewers will then want to stick around and find out more about your brand. This is where hub content is key. Your viewers are now aware of who you are, so you need to provide them with more engaging content to encourage them to subscribe and interact with your content. It’s not just about promoting your brand as such, it is more about keeping your viewers interested with valuable content. In this way, hub videos are a bit like magazine content in that they’re released regularly and follow a common theme, individual or topic.
A prime example of hub content is from Waitrose, which has a whole host of demos and tutorials, including recipes and tips. Posting under the name Waitrose TV, it provides its viewers with informative content that allows them to engage. It frequently invites them to subscribe, thus gaining more and more followers who are excited to see more of the same type of content. Other examples of hub content include video diaries, behind the scenes videos and question and answer sessions with those involved.
Also known as ‘hygiene’ content, help videos are helpful in building a loyal fan base. This is the type of content that is discoverable through YouTube searches and should be optimized as such. You should be looking to create content that is insightful and supportive to your existing followers but will also attract new views, often from people who haven’t even heard of or interacted with your brand before.
Take advantage of this opportunity to engage your followers, by encouraging them to ask questions. If you can build up a loyal community of subscribers through regular and genuinely informative help content, you will start to also capitalize on the comment sections, as your fans become brand advocates by answering other viewer’s specific questions.
One brand that has perfected the idea of help content is Nike, which has created instructional and informative videos for its followers. With the Nike Academy collection of videos, the firm has targeted a specific audience that will more than likely already be well aware of the brand. Nike has capitalized on this, by creating content that appeals directly to its followers and will, therefore, encourage them to follow and share.
How Does Help Hub Hero Work Together?
Help Hub Hero is a complimentary and joined up approach to content marketing. It’s vital for businesses to understand the importance of going beyond the big advertising or brand video and attracting followers that have a vested and continuing interest in their content, long after the buzz surrounding their big hero content has calmed down. This means investing in regular hub and help content to attract subscribers and address core interest groups through search.
This self-reinforcing approach can be seen in the diagram below.
By implementing the help, hub, hero strategy, companies are able to draw attention to themselves with a large scale advertising campaign, and will also know what to post next and how it will impact the growth of their brand. Knowing what type of content to post, and when, could mean the difference between those who have seen the campaign wanting to know more about the brand, or them moving onto the next viral offering.
When posting content, it isn’t always necessary to create a huge brand push with every video. Of course, using advertising is essential to help create an initial following, but it’s what comes next that will determine your success. Knowing the difference between the role advertising plays in exposure, and when and where to start acting like a genuine YouTuber can help you establish a robust and long-term content plan.
Your followers already know who you are, so they don’t need to be constantly reminded through advertisements in every video. Instead, opening your brand up to questions and creating tailor made content for your viewers is the way to go. If you can get the balance right, with well activated video content and a bit of time you will see your brand presence on YouTube begin to grow steadily, along with your subscriber base.
Evelyn Timson is managing director at U.K.-based video marketing company Aspect Film and Video and has worked with well known brands like Coca Cola, Samsung, Microsoft and the British Library and National Trust in the U.K. You can connect with Aspect via Facebook or Twitter. To see a selection of its award winning work, check out its YouTube Channel.