One of the first elements Youtube users notice (or look at) are the video thumbnails. Thumbnails are the small “still” screenshots of the video which usually give some kind of indication of the content contained within the video.
The mistake that many Youtube publishers make which can cost them a lot of views is not choosing the BEST thumbnail available to them.
On your video settings page you are offered a choice of 3 video thumbnails to choose from. Youtube picks these randomly, usually one near the start of your video, one near the middle and one near the end. There is no gaurantee that any of these will be suitable but at least the option is there for you to choose “which one is best”.
So, What Should You Choose?
You should choose something that makes the view ‘intrigued’. That leaves them guessing what is goin to follow on from that “still”.
If for example you have a video of someone slipping over and falling into a muddy puddle (a poor example) then you wouldn’t want to show a close of of someones face. Ideally you would want a thumbnail showing the person ‘mid fall’. So it is a kind of action shot, leaving the viewer wondering what exactly happened to the person in the video.
You need to DRAW them in and get them to click.
Choosing A Custom Thumbnail
It is possible to choose a custom Youtube video thumbnail. All you need to do is join Youtubes partner programme and that option will be made available to you.
Instead of just having the three random thumbnail images to choose from you will see an option to the right hand side of them to choose a ‘Custom thumbnail’, which is ANY frame from your video.
Experiment with your video settings (thumbnails) and see your video views increase as more and more people click through.
If you haven’t yet downloaded my FREE Youtube tag extractor software you can do so by entering your email address into the opt-in box in the top right hand corner of this screen.
When you view any video on Youtube you will notice a selection of “related” videos on the right hand side. These are present in order to improve user experience. It makes it easy for a user to view a video and then quickly jump over to another “similar” video.
Getting your video on the right hand side of “other” video pages can drive tons of traffic to your OWN video.
So, How Do You Do This?
Ok, first of all you need to make a list of keywords that are themed around your video content. Then you need to go through these keywords one at a time and enter them into the Youtube search field. Take note of the view count for the videos on the front page along with the date in which they are published. If these videos show a high number of daily views then these can potentially drive traffic to your own video.
There are usually 20 related videos on the right hand side of EVERY video. That means that if you can get your own video listed within that section you will get approx. 5% of the traffic from that section… and believe me, it can be a LOT!
So, How Do You Appear On the Related Videos Section?
First of all take a note of the title and also the content within the description area. Then use my FREE Youtube Tag Extractor to extract the video tags.
Secondly, you need to click on a few of the related videos (open in a new tab) and repeat that process with those videos. Do you see any similarity? Are there any words or tags that are commonly used in all the videos? If so then add these to your OWN descript and tags.
Once these changes have been picked up and indexed your video has a chance of appearing in the “Related Videos” section which means potentially more traffic coming your way.
Annotations are contextual notices that you can add from within Youtube. This allows you to communicate further information other than what is already within your video.
Create Call To Actions
These are particularly good if you want to create a “call to action”. As in, get your viewer to click a link.
Providing you have included a link to an external site or page at the top of the description, you would then add an annotation to encourage your viewer to click that link.
Here is an example:
Download FREE Today – Click The Link In Description Below…
You would then add that annotation at the very start of the video, a minute or so into your video and also right at the end. The idea is to wet their appetite with your video content and then get them to follow through by clicking on your link.
To add an annotation, when you “Edit” your video look towards the top above your video. You will see that one of the options is “Annotations”. That’s the link you want to click in order to add your own annotations to your video.
Ok, you have probably landed on this blog due to the FREE Youtube tag extrator software that I offer. However, although tags are important and can help your video to rank highly in both Youtube and Google, it isn’t the only thing you need to consider when publishing your videos.
Create A Relevant Title
The title is probably the MOST important element of your video page. This is the number “textual” factor that users see when searching or browsing videos in Youtube or the search engines.
If you are targetting a specific keyword then it is vital that you include that keyword within your video title. Ideally at the beginning. So, let’s say for example you are targeting the keyword “best internet marketing tricks”… you would include that keyword within your title.
Here are few examples of that title…
- Best Internet Marketing Tricks
- Best Internet Marketing Tricks To Earn Money Online
- Best Internet Marketing Tricks To Build An Online Business
Make sure that your title is descriptive and strikes interest with your potential viewer. More importantly it NEEDS to be targeted and highly relevant. If you notice the above examples I gave you will notice that after my target keyword I added some kind of benefit. Ie – “To Earn Money Online” or “To Build An Online Business”. People look for benefits and solutions to a problem. Make sure you emphasize this within your title if possible.
Optimizing Your Description
Your description is your best opportunity to tell Youtube exactly what your video is all about. Be descritive and ensure that you include relevant keywords. Don’t just write a couple of sentences. Write at least two paragraphs to highlight the contents of your video.
If you are linking to an external URL then be sure to add this first at the top otherwise it will not be visible and would require your viewer to click the “Show more” link in order to see it. You want to make it as easy as possible for your viewer to click your link.