Blog

Creating Titles and Thumbnails for YouTube

by | Apr 23, 2020

This is part two of our YouTube series. Read part one if you missed it. In this four-part series, we’re discussing the why and how of YouTube. If you don’t have a channel or are just looking for ways to get more out of YouTube, this series is for YOU.

Titles

This seems like an obvious one but there are a lot of well-made videos that don’t get seen because the titles are lacking. They’re either too short, inaccurate or nondescript.

There are three rules here:

  1. Stay away from jargon

  2. Don’t overhype your video with a clickbait title

  3. Be as descriptive as possible

Instead of “Benefits of Clinical Trials”, try “Benefits of Participating in a Clinical Trial for PTSD.”

Note: YouTube cuts off titles in search results if longer than 60 characters so be concise.

Thumbnails

Every YouTube video has a thumbnail. Many people don’t realize they can create the thumbnail, instead of using the one YouTube selects for you. A thumbnail is usually the first thing viewers see.

According to YouTube, 90% of the best-performing videos on YouTube have custom thumbnails. (Source)

What makes a good thumbnail? One that’s enticing, compelling and vibrant. While there aren’t exact rules on what needs to be featured on a thumbnail consider adding:

  • Text like the title of your video

  • Clipart or a background to stand out

  • Color contrast between the title and background (bright text with a dark background or vice versa)

One thing to keep in mind with thumbnails is to make sure it matches your organization’s voice. If your nonprofit is bright and sunny, avoid using dark thumbnails and somber titles.

Write this down: Thumbnails need to be 1280 x 720 pixels (16:9 ratio) as a .JPG, .GIF, .BMP, or .PNG.

Recent Blog Posts

Best AI Uses For Nonprofits

So much has been written about AI, it can be hard to know what to think! We checked in with our resident tech expert Danielle Pinto for her thoughts on AI’s applications for nonprofits. Spoiler alert — it’s neither good nor bad. But there are some cautions … Can you...

How Do Your Numbers Compare?

Bob Merrigan summarizes the 2023 M+R Benchmark Report. The M+R just released the 2023 Benchmark Report, their "2024 Spin Through the Gripping World of Nonprofit Digital Programs." I'm a fan and wanted to read it as soon as it was available. I'd encourage you to as...

M&C Doggos & Cattos—Krunchie

Krunchie—Owned by Erika Slinker Beagle/basset hound Loves: Toys she can tear the stuffing out of, sunbathing, long naps, cheese, car rides, cuddling, and walks (including stopping and sniffing everything on the way!) Dislikes: Dogs bigger than her, hilly car rides,...

‘The Arts Taught Me Resilience, Work Ethic, & Patience’

Laura Tyler Strawn - M&C Digital Manager - working in her basement studio In this Q&A with M&C’s Laura Tyler Strawn, we continue our conversation about how a background in the arts and humanities can lead to many different careers — and provide an edge...

Three Changes Nonprofits Sending Bulk Emails Need to Make NOW

Starting in 2024, Gmail (30% of users) and Yahoo (18% of users) email services will have strict new guidelines for bulk email senders. This could affect if your emails end up in spam or not. The new requirements will hopefully help combat the flood of spam emails in...

LIKE OUR POSTS? SUBSCRIBE!

A monthly recap of Insights & Ideas from the M&C team will be delivered to your inbox.

"*" indicates required fields

Name*
Subscribe
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.