Add value with YouTube

Monday, November 9, 2009

YARMOUTH, Maine – If you’re an HME provider and you don’t have your own channel on YouTube, industry consultant Elizabeth Mansfield wants to know: Why the heck not?

“It’s a great value-added marketing that your competitors probably don’t have,” said Mansfield, president of Outsource Marketing Solutions. “It’s the second most popular Web site for searching in the world. When you upload a video to YouTube, you can literally see people start watching it, because it shows the number of views.”

Other reasons to have your own YouTube channel, Mansfield says: It allows you to post a profile (company name, description, Web site, etc.); and it allows you to list subscribers, creating an online community.

There’s no excuse not to have a YouTube channel, Mansfield says. It’s free, and it’s easy to do.

“No one expects a multi-million dollar video on YouTube,” she said. “All you need is a flip camera.”

Baiting Hollow, N.Y.-based Heritage Medical created its own YouTube channel earlier this year. Co-owner Tom McGovern says it’s the perfect complement to the company’s other Web offerings, especially its e-mail newsletter.

“When we post a new video, our e-mail newsletter will have a link to it on our YouTube channel,” he said. “It’s fine to do newsletters and Facebook and YouTube, but when you have them all working together, it’s pretty powerful.”

Providers usually post product demos on their YouTube channels, but Mansfield encourages them to take it a step further. Case in point: Heritage Medical recently posted a video to its channel of McGovern at the first Starbucks in Seattle, where he was attending the American Orthotic & Prosthetic Association National Assembly. The video has 59 views.

“It makes me laugh every time I look at it,” Mansfield said. “It may be silly, but you want to personalize your company as much as possible.”