— September 23, 2019
Most people are thrilled when they finally finish their video. They can’t wait to show the world their masterpiece. However, they are so busy with the production that they forget about the thumbnail.
This can be a HUGE mistake!
A video’s thumbnail is often the first thing that a person sees. If your viewers don’t like what they are seeing with your thumbnail, they won’t watch the video.
In fact, your video’s thumbnail is your first chance to grab your viewer’s attention. Here are a few tips for creating amazing video thumbnails
Stay on brand.
You need to think about your brand every time that you produce a video thumbnail. Your brand is the face of your video, so you need to be sure to keep it on point.
As you work on your video thumbnail, you should ask yourself some questions. Are you sticking to the same fonts, colors, and style that is your brand? If not, make the necessary changes so that everyone will know that it is your video.
Neil Patel is a great example of how one should stay on-brand. He always uses bold orange colors and consistent title graphics.
Tease your content.
Your thumbnail needs to get the viewer excited about what your video is all about. It will determine whether or not he or she views it.
One of the best ways to do this is by giving your viewers a teaser of what they are going to watch in your video. If they are going to learn something important, let them know.
Be bold and stand out.
You need to think a little differently than others so you can grab people’s attention with your thumbnails. Since everyone is so busy and overwhelmed, you have to do something different if you want them to stop and take notice.
One way to do this is by not making it look like an ad of any type. You also don’t want it to look like any of the other content that is out there! Really think outside of the video marketing box and see what you can come up with.
Gary Vaynerchuk always thinks outside of the box with his goofy edited photos and titles.
Understand where your video will live and possibly autoplay.
Depending on where you place your video will determine when your thumbnail will play. Sometimes, like with Facebook and LinkedIn, your thumbnail will be part of the autoplay, before the actual video is played.
We have seen the best way to still take advantage of the thumbnail benefits is to animate the first few seconds into an animated thumbnail. This allows for almost a GIF thumbnail effect.
Keep your content organized.
Though most people use their thumbnails to attract attention, you can also use them to keep your video content organized. By creating unique thumbnail styles for different playlists or styles of videos, your viewers will be able to quickly view your videos and understand which are which.
Atomi Smart is a master at this. They use distinct designs for their how-to videos and their product videos, making it crystal clear which videos are which.
It is important to stay on brand any time that you make a video and a thumbnail. You want readers to know that they are your videos, just by their style.
You also need to catch people’s attention, even if you have to think outside of the box. Give them a teaser and see if they watch! If not, you may need to go back to the drawing board.
There may be other ways to make your thumbnails stand out. Do you have any other thoughts?
Be sure to leave some notes for me in the comments. I will make sure that I add them to this list.
Best of luck and keep on creating video content!