YouTube Can Be a Powerful Tool to Grow Your Firm. Why Not Use It?

Admit it. You’ve used YouTube. Whether it’s to watch a recording of a concert, an instructional video on cooking, or a German Shephard and a deer playing in someone’s back yard, it can be a guilty pleasure and provide very practical advice. Given its scope, it also has great potential to get your message out to potential clients you want to reach.

It’s estimated that 74% of adults in the U.S. use YouTube; that’s a broader sweep than Facebook (which reaches 68% of American adults), according to Hootsuite. The vast majority of these people will never be your clients, so to use YouTube in a cost effective way, you must understand its audience, how they use YouTube, and how to get potential clients to watch your videos or paid advertising. That information makes it easier to create content that speaks to their interests, maximizes your ROI, and achieves general marketing success.

One of the great things about videos is that you need not limit them to YouTube. You can post them on your website and on social media. The more you use them, the better return you’ll get on your investment.

2021 YouTube Demographics

How big is YouTube? This big:

  • YouTube is the second-most visited website in the world (Hootsuite).
  • YouTube has 2+ billion users, making up almost one-third of the entire internet (YouTube for Press).
  • YouTube users watch one billion hours of content daily (Hootsuite).
  • YouTube is the second-most popular channel for businesses sharing video content (Buffer).
  • YouTube will make $5.6 billion in advertising revenue in 2021 in the U.S. (eMarketer).
  • YouTube is the top video-streaming app, and the average user spends 23.2 hours per month watching content (App Annie).
  • The three most popular categories on YouTube are commentary videos (like vlogs), product reviews (like unboxings), and how-to/tutorial style videos (MediaKix).

YouTube Age Demographics

People of all ages use YouTube:

  • In Q3 2020, 77% of 15- to 25-year-olds and 70% of 45- to 64-year-olds in the U.S. used YouTube (Statista).
  • 80% of U.S. parents with a child age 11 or younger say their child watches videos on YouTube, and 53% of those children use the platform daily (Pew Research Center).
  • Outside of China, 77% of Gen Z (those born from the late 1990s to the early 2010s), 75% of Millennials (generally born from 1981 to 1996), 61% of Gen X (those born from the mid-1960s to the late 1970s), and 44% of Baby Boomers (born from the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s) visit YouTube daily (GlobalWebIndex).
  • 46% of Gen Z and Millennials in the U.S. and U.K. say they’ve watched a virtual event on YouTube (GlobalWebIndex).

YouTube Gender Demographics

Please note that audience data for individuals who do not identify as cisgender men and women are not reported.

  • 45.8% of YouTube’s total advertising audience is female (Hootsuite).
  • 54.2% of YouTube’s total advertising audience is male (Hootsuite).

What do People Watch on YouTube?

For Millennials:

  • 70% of users watched YouTube in the past year to learn how to do something new or learn more about something that interests them (Think with Google).
  • Nearly 60% of women watching YouTube say they are more likely to remember a brand that’s LGBT-friendly (Think with Google).
  • 45% of YouTube users agree that a YouTuber inspired them to make a personal change in their life (Think with Google).
  • YouTube reaches more Millennials than all the TV networks combined (The Shelf).
  • When learning something new, Millennials are 2.7X as likely to prefer to do so by watching a YouTube video compared to reading a book (Think with Google).

For Gen X:

  • 75% watch YouTube videos that relate to past events or people (Think With Google).
  • 73% watch YouTube to learn how to do something. Similarly, they enjoy DIY content for things like cooking and home repair (Think With Google).
  • 68% watch YouTube to stay up to date on news and pop culture (Think With Google).

For Baby Boomers:

  • 67% watch YouTube. (The Shelf).
  • Some of their most-watched categories on YouTube are entertainment, music, and news (Think With Google).
  • They are 1.3X more likely to prefer watching a YouTube tutorial video than reading instructions (Think With Google).
  • One in three say they use YouTube to learn about a product or service (Think With Google).
  • 68% of boomers say they watch YouTube videos to be entertained (Think With Google).

Takeaways for Video Marketers

Different groups approach YouTube in their own ways, but they share some things in common.

Based on the research, Gen Z turns to YouTube to learn something or improve a skill. They also use the platform to deepen real-life connections and take a break from the stress of being a teenager.

Millennials also go to YouTube to learn something or be entertained. Additionally, they go to the platform to be inspired, watch TV, and catch up on the news. Gen Xers are goal oriented. They usually go to YouTube with a purpose — to learn something, watch nostalgic videos, or stay up to date on news and pop culture.

Baby Boomers have the most spending power of any generation, and they go to YouTube to learn how to use products and watch tutorials. If they can catch up on their favorite news and entertainment on the site, that’s where they go.

While each generation might watch fairly similar content, it’s important to remember that the goal is different. For Gen X it might be to reminisce, while for Baby Boomers it’s to save time, and for Millennials and Gen Z it’s to learn something new. To properly target the right demographic on YouTube, pay attention to the most popular categories and types of videos they watch on the platform.

Many use YouTube as an Online Video Library of Information and Advice

Though they differ in many ways, a common denominator for these groups is using YouTube as a learning tool. They want useful information, communicated concisely, and practical advice on what to do.

  • Entertaining videos probably wouldn’t be a good fit for a professional services firm, but the videos need to be short and easy to understand, and topics should be approached in a positive “this is how you can handle this” way. Instead of emphasizing how much trouble they’re in, talk to the audience about how you can help resolve issues so they can improve and they can move on with their lives
  • The same people going to YouTube to learn how to make a lemon meringue pie also want to learn about legal issues and how to address them. Just like a recipe video does, you could tell the audience what actions they must take to reach their goal and address their issue (including calling your office).
  • Your video could cover lists like things you need to know about divorce, what to do if you’re pulled over by the police, or mistakes to avoid if you’re applying for Social Security Disability benefits.

Approaches for Each Age Group

Gen Z users may be interested in your community involvement and how you’re working, volunteering, and donating money to make it a better place. Shared values may make them feel more connected to your firm.

If you’re targeting Millennials, tell inspiring stories about the attorneys at your firm or of your clients who overcame obstacles to reach a successful outcome for their legal issue. Baby Boomers and Gen X interested in the news may want to watch videos about important legal decisions or changes in the law that may impact them personally or society in general.

Let Data Drive Your YouTube Strategy

Use these statistics to create a YouTube marketing strategy that speaks to potential clients’ interests, drives revenue, and increases conversions. If you want to talk about marketing in general or how YouTube can help grow your firm, call Lawyers Marketing Associates at (919) 637-9144 today, and we’ll help get you moving in the right direction. Remember – there’s no time like today to start growing your firm!