5 Simple Tips to Maximize Your YouTube Views
In today's article, videographer, Serg Soza gives 5 simple tips to maximize your YouTube exposure to drive more fans, increase views, and allow the music industry to discover you.
by Serg Soza
1. Keep ‘em moving.
YouTube Annotations are your friends. This tool allows you superimpose links and text right over your video so you can use YouTube’s fonts and colors. Or you include what looks like “buttons” into your actual uploaded video file. Trace/activate them in YouTube Annotations and insert hyperlinks for the same effect. Once you’ve gotten your audience to pay attention to your video, you’ll want to keep them, right?
Here's an example of an Annotations how-to.
2. This is video... learn about bitrates and codecs.
A grainy video, a black "letterbox" band around your video or video quality lower than 720p are just plain goofy. Read up on how to get the most optimized files for YouTube that will play crisp and properly formatted video for everyone - every time. Optimizing bitrates, sometimes through a bit of trial and error, make it completely possible to get a video on YouTube that plays crisply while maintaining a small file size. It's well worth your time to learn about this. You can think of bitrates as the average amount of information your computer has to process at any given moment to play the video. The lower you get that number while maintaining high-quality video the better! Don't kill yourself on a video project only to put out a half baked product simply because you didn't spend a few hours reading about exporting, codecs and, most importantly, bitrates. If you’re working with a film maker, check on this. The number of video people I’ve come across who don’t know this is alarming.
Get started with bitrates here:
3. Like books and their covers, sometimes we judge videos by their titles.
Pay attention to your titling fonts, typefaces and formatting. I can't say how exactly your titles should look, but it hurts oh-so-deeply every time I see a great video with terrible, thrown together titles. Learn what the default settings are for text in your editing program so that you can avoid them at all costs. Not paying attention to text formatting on your titles is like carefully wrapping a present and tying a greasy old bike chain around it as a bow. Think of what's happening in the video behind those titles as you compose titles and adjust accordingly. If your video is bright and sunny, consider your text color for visibility. Think of how they come in and go out. You might time your titles to the beat of your music. Think about it for a moment. Your titles are another opportunity to dress up your video. They matter.
The documentary, “Helvetica”, pulls at you.
4. Show aaand tell.
Use those video description boxes! The text you put here will be how your audience finds you online - put all your keywords here. Work with your team to make sure any and all relevant info is included. If you want the music industry, bloggers and fans to discover you include all band member names, names of past bands, links to press, names of past albums and any other proper nouns relating to the artist/band/video. The more unique info you can put here, the more chances you have of being found. Be a champ and include links to your webpage, facebook, bandcamp.
Internet gurus agree.
5. You're only as good as your top search results.
Take your brand name seriously. This one should go without saying. Be mindful of your online presence and your Google status. Don't put anything online that you haven't properly polished or until you’ve established a good online presence online. Don't let a shaky iPhone video from your the show that three people showed up to be what people find when they search you. The items in your search results should be your biggest and best. You want the work you're most proud of to come up when the average viewer finds and maybe gives you a thirty second consideration. What does not come up prominently to your average passive audience will never get seen.
Do you have any additional tips or strategies to increase your video presence? We'd love to hear your ideas!
About Serg Soza:
Music video director SERG SOZA cites after school cartoons, MTV, his dad's electronics obsession and the radio in his mom's car as inspirations that sparked his early interest in music and video. A film production internship in college and being hired soon after opened the doors to experiences and hands-on opportunities to work and learn from some of the best. These days Serg spends his days creating dynamic music videos for independent artists and labels. He continues to do work in casting for commercials, editing for news and production from TV to web.