Adam T. Sutton

Inbound Marketing: A pioneering YouTube video strategy

Being a reporter has its ups and downs. Thankfully, some articles are a pleasure to write. I was thrilled to publish our latest inbound marketing article featuring the YouTube video strategy of Orabrush, a brand of breath-freshening tongue cleaners.

Orabrush YouTube Landing PageOrabrush’s strategy has pulled-in over 35 million video views and powers the majority of the company’s marketing. Below, I’ve pointed out three key areas that I like about this strategy.

CMO as Chief Marketing Publisher

A central tenet of inbound marketing is that marketers need to think of themselves as publishers. Rather than buying ads in a media outlet, your brand builds the media outlet. You own the newsletters, blogs, apps, webinars — or whichever platform you select.

Jeffrey Harmon is CMO at Orabrush. His team is committed to consistently delivering the videos its audience enjoys and expects. This makes for a demanding publishing schedule, but that’s the life of a Chief Marketing Publisher. Deadlines must be met and quality must be maintained.

Another tenet of inbound marketing is that your content is not advertising — it’s rich information that interests your audience. Your brand and products can be included, but they are secondary. The content must give the audience what it wants while helping to achieve your marketing goals.

Orabrush does this by creating several types of video, as described in the article. The majority of videos are intended to engage and entertain — which is what Orabrush’s audience wants. Other videos are intended to encourage conversions while also entertaining.

This isn’t just for the LOLs

Orabrush’s videos are funny and they’ve built an audience. But at the end of the day, the company needs to sell tongue brushes. Harmon’s team is not trying to build an audience to sell advertising.

That is why Orabrush’s marketers have included calls-to-action throughout its videos and YouTube page. Viewers are encouraged to:
o Watch another video
o Share the video on Facebook or Twitter
o Connect with Orabrush on other social networks
o Visit Orabrush’s website
o Request a free brush
o Locate a nearby Orabrush store
o And more

You can see a great example of their calls-to-action at the end of this short video:

This approach applies directly to inbound marketing. The content is the main attraction. It is the reason Orabrush’s YouTube page exists. But while viewers enjoy videos, they’re encouraged to interact with the brand, visit the site, and try out an Orabrush.

Experimentation and research drive the ship

Orabrush has an elaborate YouTube page. The channel is part video-viewer, part landing page, part social channel. The design is the result of several years of research and testing by Harmon and his team.

Orabrush is not afraid to test new ideas, which is how it developed this strategy. Its YouTube page was not a modified best practice. The marketers built it piece by piece through rigorous testing.

Even Orabrush’s first forays into video were experiments. As mentioned in the article, Harmon first tested adding another publisher’s video to one of Orabrush’s landing pages. That video boosted conversion rates by 200%, and it served as the first step in the long journey to build Orabrush’s video strategy as it stands today.

Without its culture of experimentation and testing, Orabrush would not likely have such a powerful presence on YouTube. You can find out a lot more about testing and optimization at the upcoming MarketingSherpa Optimization Summit in June.

Enough already!

I could go on and on about why I love Orabrush’s video strategy (including that it came from a scrappy startup and that its marketers also engage in social marketing) — but I won’t.

The last point I will make is that Harmon’s team built this channel with a small team and a limited budget. There is truly no reason why any company could not do something similar.

Related resources

Inbound Marketing: Small business builds YouTube channel from the ground up, expands to 40 countries

MarketingSherpa: Subscribe to our Inbound Marketing newsletter

MarketingSherpa Optimization Summit 2011

Inbound Marketing: Brand-powered content hub grabs top Google rank in two months

Inbound Marketing: How to pull-in customers without pushing ads

Content Marketing: How to get your subject matter experts on your corporate blog

Content Marketing: Should you lure a journalist over to the ‘dark side?’

Email Marketing: Maybe it really is an inbound tactic…

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Inbound Marketing



  1. March 28th, 2011 at 20:05 | #1

    I’d like to know how they used an annotation to link out to their web site. Any idea?

  2. Adam Sutton
    March 31st, 2011 at 09:52 | #2

    Hi Tony — I cannot be certain, but I believe they are afforded more leverage by the network as a high-level advertiser.

  3. March 31st, 2011 at 11:42 | #3

    This is a great video strategy! I think all viral video strategies MUST entertain first. Their call to actions were brilliant, especially the “sub” used to call users to subscribe. I like to see small teams with limited budgets producing such a tremendously successful campaign. Inspiring. Wondering if you can point me in the direction of production resources for small businesses (like mine) to produce viral video campaigns. I’ve got great ideas but, like the Orabrush team, I’ve got a limited budget.

    Thanks for sharing, Tony.
    Michelle

  4. Adam Sutton
    April 1st, 2011 at 15:00 | #4

    Hi Michelle — I am not a video production expert, but my understanding is that creating a good YouTube video does not have to be difficult or expensive. There are videos shot on shoddy webcams with poor audio that have achieved millions of views. If I were in your shoes, I would research different types of video editing software and affordable digital cameras. You can also recruit film students from a nearby university to help, as described in the article.

  5. April 2nd, 2011 at 13:46 | #5

    Very cool indeed. Although it’s mentioned that they started from meager beginnings, they’re only able to do all the “cool” stuff with their channel, videos, etc. due to their now high status. Looking for a how to on taking channels and vids to the next level.

  6. July 8th, 2011 at 15:28 | #6

    These videos are pretty awesome! I’d wonder what they consider a “limited budget”.

    As a videographer in NY, I’d say those videos were at least $5,000 plus each.

    Which is great if you have a budget like that. But many small business owners don’t. Or they do but can only create one video instead.

    If $5000+ videos aren’t in your budget, or you aren’t that creative, go the other route and just share your story and knowledge. It works.

  7. December 16th, 2014 at 17:48 | #7

    Lol ..fun and Interesting info, thanks for the share !

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