Southern Oregon small town

Southern Oregon small town

I don’t generally obsess over subscriptions or YouTube video views, but as I’ve been working on the Skyrocket Your Video Views course and putting into place practices that I want to teach, I’ve been seeing my viewer numbers grow.

This is not about viral growth, but organic, “stumble-on-able” growth.  The kind of growth that happens when people search out content, and see your video and watch and subscribe.

There are strategies I teach in my resource guide, “5 Steps to Attract more Video Views,”  including Targeting your Perfect Person with a title that attracts their attention, and ENGAGE your Audience via comments.  

These actions help your video become discoverable and watched.

What I discovered quite recently is that by adding custom thumbnails, I had a 10% increase in subscribers over just one week.

If you want to see your YouTube subscriptions grow, create your own unique custom thumbnail.

There are many ways to do this, but here are a few ideas I’ve seen.

1. Choose a style template:  If you are doing a vlog that template might be choosing a screen capture of yourself and then adding the title of your piece.  If you are creating an educational series, select an image that represents the lesson, and then add the title and possibly the series name.

2.  Pick a custom effect to unify your thumbnails.  Similar to Instagram, there are now photo apps online that allow you to easily add effects to your images.  I’ve been using Picmonkey to stylize images and find custom fonts.

3.  Pick a graphic element to place on your thumbnail and add text over that element.  I’ve seen this done nicely by vlogger Alex Beadon.  She uses a large pink circle and places her text inside the circle.


4.  Make sure text is left of the screen or in the upper half of the screen if on the right.  This ensures that your text is visible on various devices.  In general, YouTube includes the run time in the bottom right corner of the thumbnail.  This is small on a computer but takes up more space on a small mobile device.

5.  Thumbnail size:  YouTube recommends a thumbnail size of 1280 x 720.

If this is something you’ve been toying with but haven’t gotten around to doing, I suggest you take the time to create a custom thumbnail this week.  

Even if you don’t have a series of videos, it will help your one video look more professional and catch the eye of more people who are browsing YouTube for content.

Try this out and let me know how it goes.

And if you want to check out the free resource guide, “5 Steps to Attract More YouTube Views” head over to our site and sign up now.