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3 Ways to Increase Your YouTube Viewership

December 08 2015

Increase YouTube ViewershipA lot of real estate professionals have fully embraced YouTube – it provides a great platform to showcase homes for sale that other platforms to the same extent don't. Some brokerages are also using it for recruitment and to communicate information to buyers and sellers. Since YouTube is currently one of the largest search engines that people use to search for content, this is a definitely a social network that you want to be visible on!

But what can you do to help make yourself more visible and your videos more appealing for users to watch?

You've already spent time and resources creating these videos for YouTube. By tweaking just a few things when you add or edit a video on YouTube, you have the potential to get your video in front of more buyers, sellers and agents.

Thumbnails

Thumbnails are one of the first things that a user will see when they are searching for a video. By default, YouTube automatically suggests three thumbnails for each video, but did you know that you can also create and upload a custom thumbnail image that you've created?

Going this route gives you the opportunity to consistently brand all of your videos across your channel, as well as giving you a way to better showcase what your video is about. For example, if you have a video that you're using specifically for agent recruitment, you may find that a shot of some of your happy agents with your brokerage logo may appear better in search results than one of the automatically generated ones that YouTube suggests. Or, if your video is a virtual tour of a home, you may find that an image of the front of the house works better for that specific video.

You can easily set up custom thumbnail by enabling monetization on your account. Don't worry – this doesn't mean that you have to use ads on your video if you don't want to, but it is currently the only way to add custom thumbnails.

You will want to remember a few things when creating and using custom thumbnails:

  • The thumbnail should clearly illustrate the topic that your video is about.
  • The thumbnail should be distinguishable in various sizes – remember, people watch YouTube on their phones, computers, tablets and televisions!
  • The thumbnail should be using a 16:9 aspect ratio – this is the ratio most players use.

Video Description

Your description is another one of the first things that a user sees when they are searching for a video, so you want to make it as catchy as you can while still including any keywords that people may be searching for.

When writing your video description, you really want to remember that the first three lines of text in the description are going to be what users see by default. Everything after the first three lines of text will be hidden below the "Show More" link on the video page. Information like credits, social media links and information about your company may be better suited to appear after the first three lines, and you may want to use the first three lines as a way to pique the interest of potential viewers.

In the case of real estate videos, this could come in handy if you've created a video to answers questions that homebuyers may have – include these questions in your description so viewers know exactly what they're going to get out of your video.

Annotations

Annotations can be a great way to interact with your viewers – you can use these to encourage people to subscribe to your channel, to watch another video on your channel, or even to visit your website!

There are five types of annotations that you can use in your videos:

  • Title – This creates a text overlay on your video
  • Label – This creates a label to name a specific part of your video
  • Speech bubbles – This creates speech bubbles with text
  • Note – This creates a pop-up box with text
  • Spotlight – This creates an area in a video that can be highlighted on mouseover

The Spotlight annotations are often used in end cards (the screen that displays for the last 10-20 seconds of a video, asking viewers to subscribe and/or watch another video). This type of annotation can be extremely handy, because it can be used to gain more subscribers or direct users to what you want them to view next. It can also be extremely beneficial if you are doing a virtual tour of a property that you are selling – you can link your users to the property page on your website directly in your video!

One thing you do want to remember when using annotations, however, is that they aren't clickable on mobile phones, tablets or smart TVs.

YouTube can be a huge part of any real estate marketing plan. These three areas can really help you optimize your videos for more views and better YouTube search results. By keeping an eye on your YouTube Analytics, you can easily learn what techniques work best for you, so you can imitate that in more of your videos, providing you with even more views.

To view the original article, visit the Lone Wolf blogLone Wolf blog.