A huge misconception about video marketing is that a great video will take care of itself. In other words, if you’re working with a Los Angeles video production company and they give you a beautifully executed, beautifully edited video, it’s assumed that it’ll rake in views and shares immediately once it’s posted up on YouTube. Sadly, solid video marketing is a little more complicated than that.
There are at least a dozen different channels on which you could share your social videos. However, the biggest mover and shaker in that particular niche remains to be YouTube. If you want to give your videos a fighting chance in this channel, it might be worth it to invest in features beyond the video. You’ve got the gift; let’s look at the wrapping paper.
Invest Time and Effort in YouTube Thumbnails
As writer Maria Jose puts it, “The YouTube thumbnail is the 21st century’s book cover.” We’re told not to judge a book by its cover (or, in this case, a video by its thumbnail), but there’s no denying that the front image or illustration can make all the difference between us picking up the book or discarding it. A YouTube thumbnail acts much in the same way.
If you’re still allowing YouTube to pick your thumbnail for you (and thus ending up with a very questionable freeze-frame), the only advice we can give is; stop. YouTube allows users to upload their own thumbnails, and for very good reason; these tiny, clickable pictures are meant to visually represent the video. They are also meant to attract viewers and get them to stick around.
Your Los Angeles video production company may present you with the best corporate video ever, but that still doesn’t mean you can leave the thumbnail selection to chance. Get a graphic artist to create a customized thumbnail to match your video, and you’ll be surprised by how quickly the view count rises.
Some quick tips; make sure to use close-ups of people’s faces in the video, if possible. Viewers are attracted by emotion, and the expressions of the models in the thumbnail can positively dictate their emotional investment in the video before they even watch it (i.e., shots of people laughing will tell them it’s a funny video, whereas shots of people looking confused or surprised will pique their curiosity). This is an instance where the human tendency to mirror emotions can work to your advantage.
Also make sure to avoid placing text in the lower right-hand corner of the thumbnail. If you’ve ever seen a YouTube video thumbnail, you’ll know that they overlay the total video length (in hours:minutes:seconds) in the lower right-hand corner. Ergo, when posted to YouTube, anything in that corner will be covered by the timestamp. This can jar the overall design.
Focus on Compelling Titles/Headlines
Now that you’ve designed your book cover—and yes, we’ll be sticking with this analogy for now—you need to focus on the title. Again, an interesting or compelling title can get the casual browser to pick up a book and read the synopsis. Your YouTube video title has the exact same power. The thumbnail is meant to be purely visual bait that gets the viewer to stop scrolling and zero in on the video.
The title takes it a step further and helps the viewer decide whether the video is relevant to what they want to watch or what they’re searching for in that current moment. There’s more to video marketing than just finding a Los Angeles video production company and getting a video done. A bit of SEO and social media experience needs to go into the process as well. Even just knowing the basics of search engine optimization can help immensely.
Ergo, your video title (in fact, your video’s metadata in general) should be searchable. Pick your main keyword and spin your title with that as the focus. If your video features a product, include the product name. If it’s a how-to, emphasize the action or lesson (i.e., ‘how to do a French braid,’ ‘how to make mug cakes,’ ‘how to edit a video).
Buzzfeed does a great job of creating video titles that are both highly informative (you know exactly what you’re watching) and engaging enough to pique curiosity. Titles such as ’19 Dad Jokes That’ll Make You Seem Funny’ and ‘Coffee Hater Drinks Coffee For A Week’ are both examples of titles that are searchable (i.e., the first one could turn up in a search for ‘dad jokes’), specific, and just the right touch of interesting.
In the end, there’s more to Los Angeles video marketing than just posting your video to YouTube and hoping for the best. A more in-depth overview will tell you that you need to implement things like cross-platform sharing and platform-specific optimization. The production process doesn’t end once you receive your finished product from the Los Angeles video production company. In fact, many would agree that creating the video is just the first tiny step in creating a winning video marketing strategy.