YouTube optimization can definitely be considered both an art and a science.
Nowhere is that more obvious than with you YouTube titles.
In my previous article I showed you the fundamentals of piecing together the perfect YouTube Video title (the science) and now it’s time for the art.
This is the part where you put on your Mad Men style hat and get into creative copywriting mode.
It’s time to sell.
The most important part of your title is what I like to call the Hook. This is the sexy, descriptive part that kicks off your title and viewers use to make a split second decision – Is your video worth their time?
There are a number of ways to make your Hook as sexy and clickable as possible and here are just some of the go-to formats that I use and know attract clicks.
7 YouTube title types that convert
1. How To
This is the king of the evergreen title.
People use this term to search for videos all the time on both YouTube and Google, so if you’re making an instructional video, including “How to” at the start will definitely help increase those long tail views.
There’s nothing people like more in life than a good ol’ fashion showdown.
Whether it’s two wild animals, two pop divas (what’s the difference right?) or two models of mobile phone, adding these two letters to a title gives it a fighting chance of success.
3. The Remarkable (“Epic” “Awesome” “Incredible”)
This one should be used sparingly to maintain its impact but it can be a powerful weapon to bring out for the right video.
In his book [easyazon_link asin=”1451686579″ locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”faqtube-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Contagious: Why Things Catch On[/easyazon_link], Jonah Berger says that it’s the appeal of the remarkable that can help to send things viral and there’s no coincidence that many a viral hit start with a sensationalist adjective.
Even though it’s overused, it still seems to have cut-through if used correctly.
4. Trend Friendly
Use trending keywords to leverage search traffic but make sure you don’t alienate your subscribers and that keywords are not crowbarred in too clumsily.
A more subtle way to use trends for titles is to compare two similar keywords and see which gets more search traffic.
See how to do this using Google Trends below:
Almost nothing peaks the interest of the more intellectual leaning YouTube viewer than an unanswered question.
This is an age-old copywriting technique that has passed the test of time and continues to help numerous channels to millions of views:
6. Functional but SEO friendly
Short but sweet. Just like me.
These titles don’t mess around, get straight to the point and are keyword rich.
They don’t waste space with superlatives and minimize stop words, resulting in higher search rankings.
For maximum effect on these types of video I would suggest keyword research using the YouTube Keyword tool and the Google trends technique I outline in the video above.
How could I complete this list without including the List.
You may be sick to death of being sent BuzzFeed lists but YouTube is still lapping them up.
Tell the audience what they are getting and how many.
You don’t have to use top 10s and using seemingly random numbers can actually help peak interest. Take a look at a magazine rack next time your passing and see this in action.
Of course some of these will not apply to your niche. Lets take a look at a hypothetical example:
Epic denture cleaning tutorial
This may not be suitable for an oral hygiene channel, but you will be able to utilise a few I’m sure:
How to sterilise dentures for free
7 free denture cleaning tips
Why do dentures get smelly?
The beautiful thing about titles is that you can change them and experiment. Make sure you’re tracking changes in analytics so you can see how effective the changes were and what your audience react well to.
Try using some of these on your videos both new and old and let me know in the comments below if they work for you.
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