On this week’s Creator’s Tip, we are going to talk about the five things you definitely need to optimize on your videos, and on your YouTube channel. Creating great content is important, but YouTube is a very large place with many people creating a lot of videos for viewers to choose from. The YouTube Creator Playbook for Brands confirms that you need to optimize your videos for your target audience to ensure that you reach and keep your audience.
5 Things You Should Optimize on Every Video
Section Four of the YouTube Creator Playbook for Brands (download here) focuses on optimizing your video content. This optimization takes the form of the following:
The metadata of a video is the title, the description, and the tags. Best practice for metadata optimization includes using the right (i.e. the appropriate) keywords that you want your video content to be found for. YouTube confirms that the use of metadata helps the site index your content, which is vital to building views, both from search and from the suggested videos feature.
Title: Accurately represent your video in a way that both uses keywords and is enticing for people to click.
Description: Take the time to craft a few sentences that describe the video to appear as the snippet text in search results and directly beneath the video.
Tags: These are the descriptive keywords that will help people find your videos. Include a mix of specific and general tags. Include tags that are keywords in your title and description. Try to use the whole 120-character limit.
#2 Custom Thumbnails
A great custom thumbnail with a strong image that represents the video, gives you have the opportunity to entice the viewer into clicking through to the content. Remember that it will be shown in various places around YouTube, so make sure it’s just as clear when it’s very small as it is when it’s large. YouTube makes it clear that thumbnails act as ‘mini marketing posters’ for your content so think what kind of image would really appeal to viewers enough for them to watch your video. The Playbook strongly advises that:
- You use visual cues (colors, images, shapes, personalities)
- Your thumbnail is consistent with your brand.
- Images used are clear, in-focus, and hi-res
- Close-ups of faces are always a good idea
- Images need to looks great in both small and large sizes
- The thumbnail should always accurately represent the content
Annotations are sliceable overlays that you can add to your YouTube videos. You can use this feature to make a subscribe button clickable in your videos, and also to drive a call-to-action like inviting the viewer to comment, like, respond to a question, or anything else you’d like them to do. Whenever possible, think about annotations for your video ahead of time and build in places for viewers to click and interact. Then use the Spotlight annotation for make those sections of your video interactive.
- Use good metadata for your Playlists, including a compelling title and description.
- Feature your Playlists on the front of your channel.
#5 Channel Experience
Finally, make sure your channel is well organized and that you have fully utilized, or updated, the customizable features of the channel. This will ensure that you as the creator or brand, deliver the best experience to your viewers as possible. You can optimize the following for your channel:
- Channel name
- Channel icon
- Channel description
- Channel art
- Adding social links under the About tab
- Adding a channel trailer video
- Curating your videos into sections
- Adding some other featured channels to promote
- Setting up InVideo Programming
Please let us know in the comments below how you are optimizing your videos and your YouTube channel.