Are you trying to gain new learners by releasing a preview of your course content online? However, you are finding that your videos aren’t getting views or gaining any momentum.
YouTube can be a troublesome social media platform to try to build an audience on but don’t worry, we are here to help. We have provided four powerful tips to help increase your video rankings on YouTube including how to structure your videos, where to put your keywords, and how to engage your audience.
What does YouTube have to do with eLearning? Two things:
- YouTube is a simple way for you to make educational content available to your learners through video.
- It is possible to grow an audience/following on YouTube. It is the number one place that people go to for educational video so if you are looking to create brand awareness or establish a reputation as an expert in your field then you should definitely be posting educational videos on YouTube.
Check out our other article: How Marketers are Using eLearning for more ideas on how to use online learning as part of your marketing strategy.
Long Form Videos
On YouTube the three top metrics are subscribers, viewers, and total watch time. YouTube considers total watch time to be the most important metric for ranking videos because they prefer to rank videos that will retain people’s attention and keep them on YouTube.
How do you increase your total watch time? Create longer videos to provide more content for your viewers to consume. Content will always be king, meaning that the content you produce must be high quality and entertaining to retain viewer attention.
How long should I make my videos? Well, if you are strictly looking at increasing your YouTube rankings then you should look at your competition. Take a look at other videos that are similar to yours to get an idea of how long your videos should be. A rule of thumb is to create videos that are around 9 minutes in length because there is enough content that isn’t too long for viewers to lose interest or too short that it doesn’t improve your total watch time quickly enough.
Now don’t just start randomly pumping out longer videos for the sake of your YouTube rankings. We often get asked what is the perfect video length, and of course the answer is that it depends on your goal. The overall goal of your brand and the goal of each individual video. If one of your goals is to rank higher on YouTube to grow your following then take our advice and create longer videos but make sure that the videos are well structured and follow the rules of how people learn best.
When your online education is relevant, engaging, and helpful then people are more likely to watch more videos from your channel. Do your learners a favor and create online education, such as educational videos that enable skills mastery, and behavior change.
Grab our free training for tips on how to make your online education work for the human brain!
- Total watch time is main metric
- YouTube likes to promote videos that keep viewers on YouTube
- 9 minute mark for video length
The most important part of your video is the intro, which is the first 15 seconds. In the first 15 seconds you have to hook your audience into watching the rest of your video. If you don’t succeed at this then you won’t increase your total watch time and your video won’t rank high on YouTube.
One good technique to start your video is to provide a preview of what the audience can expect to see in the video. This could be either snippets of clips of scenes later in the video, or you can pre-frame the content and describe what information you are going to provide your audience. The style of your intro will depend on what type of video you are creating.
- First 15 seconds is the timeframe to hook your audience
- Have a preview at the beginning of the video
Click Through Rate
Click through rate or CTR is a common metric you may have heard before which counts the amount of times a person has clicked on a link to your video in the case of YouTube. You need people to watch your video to rank higher and the first thing they must do before they watch it is click on the video link.
First you should pick a relevant keyword to focus your video ranking. For example, say you created a video about a review of a film and you wanted to use the keyword “movie review” for your video. Use your chosen keyword in the title of your video at least once and preferably at the beginning of your title. Adding the current year to the video’s title helps because it shows people that the video is recent. Also, it is important to say your keyword in your video. Google and YouTube are now able to analyze what you are saying in your video without subtitles or a transcript, so if you say for example “Today’s movie review is…” it will improve your video’s ranking.
The video’s thumbnail is another important factor for improving your CTR. Your video’s thumbnail should stand out from your competition. Look at what type of thumbnail your competitors have and create a thumbnail that has a different color scheme to stand out and is in line with your unique branding.
- Keywords should be at the beginning of the title
- Add current year in your title
- Say the keyword in your video
- Unique thumbnail that is different than your competitors
Remind Your Audience
Another important element of video ranking is the interaction your viewers have with the video. To encourage your audience to interact with your video it is as simple as reminding them in the beginning and end of the video to either like, favourite, comment, or subscribe. This can be done by speaking to them directly in the video or by adding annotations in the video for your audience to click on to complete their desired action.
- Remind your audience to like, comment, and subscribe
Here’s a recap of our tips to improve your rankings for your YouTube videos:
- Make quality videos that are approximately 9 minutes long
- Hook your audience in the first 15 seconds
- Pick your main keyword and use it in the title and make sure that you say it out loud in your video
- Create eye catching, on-brand thumbnails for your videos
- Encourage interaction such as likes, comments, and subscribing to your channel
Now go ahead, try our YouTube ranking tips and let us know how well it worked. We would love to hear from you!
At Learn to Flourish we are all about creating relevant, engaging, and effective eLearning. If you want to increase the quality of your educational videos, check out our free training on how to make great demonstration videos for your audience.
For more tips on video and eLearning creation check out our blog for more articles on how to improve the production quality of your videos and how to create online education that people will love.
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