Let’s assume you’ve got great music and a great music video. You worked hard on that video and you’re ready to share it with your fans.
YouTube gives you quite a few ways to “optimize” your videos so you can get more out of them and see greater engagement. Some of these things are so simple that there’s really no excuse for not doing them any time you upload a new video. What are they?
1. Use playlists
Create playlists (for instance: live videos, music videos, lyric videos, interviews, etc.) and arrange your videos accordingly. Whenever you share a video, grab the link from within the playlist so that when someone’s done watching the one video, another one begins playing automatically.
2. Custom thumbnails
Whenever you upload a video, YouTube gives you a few default options to select as the thumbnail (the still image representing your video that someone sees before clicking to play it). Those options might not be the most thrilling or intriguing moments from your video. Instead, create and upload a custom thumbnail that’s sure to entice.
3. End screens
End screens are extra visual elements that appear during the last 20 seconds of your video (on both mobile and desktop) that allow you to encourage additional views for videos and playlists, subscribes, merch sales, and more. Learn how to add End Screens to your videos.
Like end screens, cards are visual elements that appear while the video is playing to help you boost subscribes, views, sales, etc. Unlike end screens, a card can appear at any time during the video. You designate a moment in the timeline where the card will first appear (though YouTube may adjust that for further optimization), and viewers can click to expand the cards at any time for further information.
5. Video descriptions
It happens often, and I’m still always shocked, when I watch a YouTube video and see the video description has been pretty much ignored. It might say something like “Filmed live on 03/04/17.” Really? What about the venue, the song, the band name, the songwriters, the players? The lyrics? Links to subscribe or follow you on social? Give us some details — and some keywords! It only takes 5 minutes. Plus, all that information helps YouTube more accurately index your video for search.
That’s it. Easy. So easy that you have no excuse to ignore these optimization methods, right?