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Video marketing is the way of the future. There are a lot of visual learners out there who watch YouTube to gain new skills, discover hobbies and even build relationships with potential clients.

A close up of a hand tending to a garden.

Shannon’s using YouTube to learn how to garden.

If you want to keep people engaged on YouTube, follow these steps:

1. Use a good thumbnail

Without a good, descriptive and interesting thumbnail to capture the attention of viewers, you may be missing valuable hits.

Show potential viewers that your video is exactly what they’re searching for by including a headline in your video thumbnail. If possible, also include a visual related to the topic to further reinforce the fact that your video rocks.

2. Shorter is better for professional commentary

Close up of cookies.

Sharing a real-time, 20-minute baking video? We didn’t think so. Keep it short and sweet to real in potential clients, quickly.

Keep it short and sweet when sharing tips and tricks, just like we did in this video.

YouTubers with longer videos usually have sponsors who pay them to make the video. They also have multiple cameras running at once to interchange camera angles, which keeps the viewer engaged. “What’s going to happen next?

To be on the safe side, keep your professional videos under five minutes. This makes it easier on your computer, too! Rendering longer videos takes time.

3. Use annotations

If you’re on TikTok, you know annotations are everything. Shorter videos include annotations either in the way of captions, showing the audience the thoughts going on inside the person’s head or further explaining the reason behind the video.

Examples of Annotations

Examples of video annotations.In some cases, people aren’t able to crank the audio on their phones if they’re waiting in line at the bank and watching YouTube or they’re waiting for dinner to cook and they don’t want their kids to hear what they’rehearing on their phone. This is all the more reason you might want to add annotations to your videos.

Give viewers enough incentive to watch your video from the outset, with an eye-catching and descriptive thumbnail, then keep them hooked with annotations that further inform what you’re talking about.

Questions? Comments? Email us for more information, tips and tricks on how to reel them in (see what we did there!) with effective video marketing.

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Full Video Script

 Christine: I am not going to lie, I watch and listen to many YouTube videos each week and I’m noticing some common tricks that more video editors are doing with content. You’re probably seeing this too, Shannon.

Shannon: Yeah, so we thought it’d be good to share these three tricks to help your videos look more professional and engaging. First, let’s talk about thumbnails. Thumbnails are your first impression when people are scrolling and deciding what to watch. You don’t want a thumbnail that looks like a webinar, if it’s not a webinar. You want to include a person and an engaging headline in the thumbnail to grab the viewer’s attention.

Christine: Right, really good point. Next, let’s think about the length of your video and your goal. If you are creating a quick video for a social media post consider doing a Reel or Loop video of 10 seconds or less. But for topical or educational videos, try to keep the length about five minutes max. In these longer videos include chapter marks in the YouTube description so you can highlight major key points in the video. Are there longer videos on YouTube? Yes, but they also have thousands of followers and offer multiple camera angles to keep people watching. For professional commentary videos, shorter is better.

Shannon: Yeah, that’s totally true. My final tip is about annotations. Due to the continued popularity of TikTok and Instagram more videos are including quick comments, notes or images that emphasize what the speaker is talking about. Annotations can be funny, informative or expressive. The sky is the limit. Why would you change up your videos with these tricks? Keep in mind that you’re competing with billions of other publishers. Visual techniques like these can help your content stand out.

Christine: Very true. And if you would like our team at Ingenuity to evaluate your video content strategy just let us know.