Getting the most from YouTube for your hospital

by Ed Bennett on January 11, 2009

in Hospitals

Do you manage a YouTube channel for your Hospital?

Here some tips for getting the most return for your efforts.

1. Context matters – There are over 5,000 hospitals in the United States. Everyone in your town knows the “University Hospital”, but people outside your region need a little more context. Clearly identify your hospital by full name, and location. Does your channel represent a single facility, or do you post videos for a System? Make sure you add your main website address, and phone number.

2. Who’s running the show? – While you’re at it, identify yourself. Anyone can set up channel on YouTube. Make it clear that your channel is the official YouTube presence for your hospital – list your name / title, or least the department that manages the videos. A contact email or phone is also good idea.

3. YouTube is really a Search Engine – According to ComScore, search volume on YouTube is second only to Google. If you want visibility for your videos, then apply the rules of search engine optimization. Write clear, detailed descriptions of the videos, and be sure to add plenty of tags. Review the search terms that bring visitors to similar content pages on your site and use them as a guide. The video description should also link directly to the right department / service page on your web site.

4. YouTube for nonprofits - If your hospital has 501c3 status, then apply to be become a Nonprofit Channel Partner. This may take a while, and sometimes YouTube’s decisions are arbitrary, but it’s worth the effort. You gain more control over the design and content your channel page, and YouTube ads will not appear on your video pages.

5. Track your traffic with TubeMogul – YouTube recently improved their reporting tool, called InSight, but it still lacks some basic features. TubeMogul offers a free tracking service that is easy to set up and use. In addition to metrics on your videos, you can also track other YouTube accounts. They also offer paid services aimed at organizations with a significant stake in on-line video, but the free service is great for our type of channel.

Those are a few of my suggestions – what’s worked for you?

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  • Bob

    Wow! Lot’s of great information. Thanks for highlighting this information. Your blog looks great BTW. I’m making a bookmark.

  • http://sarah-stewart.blogspot.com Sarah Stewart

    Very good points. I don’t know why health professionals are so resistant, it is very frustrating. I think it’s probably because they don;t fully understand what the tools are & how they can be used. Having said that, I have seen some bad things online and wondered what on earth the HP was thinking.

    • http://ebennett.org Ed Bennett

      Sarah – thank you for the comments. Many times during my research I found hospital YouTube sites with no address, phone number or Hospital web address. I had to watch the videos and hope they would mention something that could help me figure it out. Usually there would be a phone number at the end of the video, that I could Google and use to track down the owner!

  • Alex

    Ed,
    Google Analytics is testing out an analytics API but it is in private beta now .. .

    http://www.viget.com/engage/google-analytics-just-got-way-better

    It is expect to integrate with YouTube data according to my internal contact at Google Video.

    • http://ebennett.org Ed Bennett

      Alex, that would be a welcome change. Not just for Youtube, but for Google Analytics in general.