How to select a YouTube video thumbnail that encourages more views
YouTube is divided into two, those that choose a good thumbnail image and those that use the default selection. The former generally have more video views as their videos will stand out in the search results. Its not just about your topic selection, your delivery or your videos SEO, the human brain responds to visual images in a fraction of the time of reading words – this means your thumbnail image is critical to your business videos success.
So what wrong with the default thumbnail? YouTube actually offers you a choice of three thumbnails, one from near the beginning, once from the middle and one from near the end. All of these are pretty much guaranteed to be either flycatcher moments or just generally unsuitable as a video promotional tool. The best action is to create a thumbnail image and upload it manually. This way you can customise it to be exactly what you need.
The first thing to consider is what your potential viewer is looking for, are you discussing an object, sharing your expertise or is the video a mixture of information and therefore requires something that covers all of this. Perform some test searches for your video on YouTube and Google videos, what catches your eye and what makes you want to click to view more. Once you have some ideas you can think about what you already have in your video that might provide a suitable frame grab.
Use VLC player (or your editing software) to grab a suitable frame from your video. Don’t stop here as there is more that can be done to attract attention. Now consider what words that you can use overlaid on the screen grab to make it stand out. Use the important keywords but don’t make it the same as your title. The important thing is to make it as short as possible. Now use an image editor to add your title in a way that stands out but doesn’t look cheap. If this is not your specialty ask a graphic designer to assist you.
When you are happy with what you have created (don’t forget to test it in the small size used on the results page) upload it to YouTube in the video manager section and set it live. You now have something that stands out and shows your dedication to producing professional video content. Prepare for more videos views both on your new videos and any old ones you wish to improve.