Do you use YouTube videos to promote your product? If so, how do you track what people are saying about them? You could search on the URL of a video, but typically the URL gets shortened when used in a tweet. And it might get shortened a different way for each tweet, so simply searching on the URL doesn’t work.

But here’s what does work: Put a unique hashtag in the title of your video—like #BASSMOB in this example. Then, to see what people are saying about that video, you can set up a topic in the Insight Workbench with the hashtag #BASSMOB. Viewers typically use the hashtag when they talk about the video, which makes this a fairly reliable way to track the online discussion.

Using Unique Domain Names

Here’s another solution: When it comes to URL shortening (also called URL compression), you can take the “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” approach. You can set up your very own URL compression with a domain name that’s unique to you. Bit.ly offers this service under the name Custom Short Domains.

If you produce a lot of YouTube videos and other content that’s hard to track with keywords, you can use this technique to at least track mentions of your URL compression prefix. For example, the New York Times uses nyti.ms.

Special thanks to my friends Alain Chesnais and Mark Zohar at TrendSpottr for teaching me these techniques.