How to Title YouTube Videos For Maximum Clicks

Beyond a handful of words that state what lies within, YouTube video titles serve a number of important purposes.

A title needs to resonate with your audience, it should make them want to click it, and should achieve this within a few words.

With more than 500 hours of videos uploaded to YouTube every minute, getting your video to stand out is no mean feat.

If you need to grow your YouTube channel and get more video views, optimizing your video title is essential.

If you have been trying to title YouTube videos but need to understand what gets those views, let’s show you how to do this.

Why Are YouTube Video Titles So Important?

The title of your YouTube video is one of the most crucial elements in getting viewers to click and watch it.

It’s the first thing potential YouTube viewers see when browsing through YouTube search results or suggested videos, and it provides a clear indication of what your video is about.

A great video title should be descriptive, concise, and attention-grabbing, while also incorporating relevant keywords to improve search visibility.

By crafting compelling titles, you can increase your video’s visibility and attract more views, engagement, and ultimately, conversions.

Why Are YouTube Video Titles So Important

No mean feat right?

While it’s essential to create a YouTube video title that grabs your target audience, you must first prioritize creating videos that are worth watching.

Assuming you are already creating high-quality video content that is not getting the views it deserves, getting clicks and views all stems from creating a compelling title.

When you understand what you are trying to do, whether it’s to inspire, entertain, educate, or just sell a product, you can create a title that matches the format and video style.

How Are YouTube Video Titles Different From Other Online Content Titles?

Anybody can be mistaken for thinking that YouTube titles are just a description of the video itself.

However, YouTube video titles differ from other online titles in some of the following ways:

  • They are keyword-oriented. Keywords are an essential aspect of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) to help websites and videos rank on Google’s search results page, but the YouTube algorithm relies heavily on keywords to match videos according to the appropriate search queries.
  • They focus on engagement. Many YouTube video titles go beyond traditional blog post titles; they may use more attention-grabbing language, or even provocative titles, depending on the content. Typical blogs or articles aim to pique curiosity, but YouTube videos may potentially go one step further, depending on the audience.
  • An emphasis on brand. YouTube creators can build up a stellar following, which is why their video titles may have identifying information located in the title to help followers recognize the content, such as the brand name.
  • They can be less formal. Creating a blog will require, at the very least, some basic grammar and punctuation. YouTube video titles can take a more conversational tone primarily because YouTube creators want to connect with their viewers more personally and build a community around the content.
  • Shorter titles. If you look at a video’s title and it will be shorter than others, which we will explain more about later on. Shorter titles tend to be visually appealing and easier to read.

The Importance of YouTube Video Titles

As your YouTube video will potentially be judged by the title alone, you should think of this as the deciding factor as to whether a viewer will either click on your video or scroll past it.

The title is critical for a number of reasons:

  • It identifies branding. YouTube creators who wish to build a loyal audience need a recognizable format for viewers to identify the content. YouTube viewers should be able to identify somebody, partly based on the language they use, and it should be self-evident within the title.
  • It sets expectations. The title must reflect the content of the video and set expectations for what the viewer would expect to see. Many YouTube content creators opt for clickbait titles or misleading ones, which may work to attract the initial clicks, but this will not build a relationship. Misleading titles lead to viewer dissatisfaction and lower engagement.
  • Improves search rankings. As YouTube’s algorithm adheres to video SEO guidelines, providing primary keywords in the video title, video descriptions, and tags can help your video rank higher in the YouTube search engine results, similar to the Google algorithm, so you can get your content discovered by the right people.
  • Can attract viewers from everywhere. A good title is all the difference between a great video with modest views and one that goes viral. Your title needs to be eye-catching and intriguing in equal measure.

How to Create Great YouTube Video Titles

How to Create Great YouTube Video Titles

Know Who You Are Creating Content for

Understanding your audience is the most important component of any marketing campaign.

You will get a lot more clicks if you understand your target audience.

There are a number of ways to do this including audience insight tools or YouTube Analytics tools, but you can start by uploading videos and recognizing what gets more engagement based on a number of variables, such as:

  • Subscriber volume.
  • How long viewers stick with the video.
  • The time of day they watch videos.

Make the Title Match the Content

Sometimes, simple is best. Instead of opting for clickbait titles, keeping it simple and descriptive rather than obsessing over every metric can be one of the best ways to get clicks.

Conduct Keyword Research

Keyword research will get more people because when you find out what people are searching for, you can just add the keyword into the title.

You can also improve engagements slightly more by adding the year to the title and the thumbnail to help people look for up-to-date videos, which will make all the difference if you’re trying to stay ahead of your current competition.

When placing keywords in the title, your target keyword should be as close to the very beginning as possible and in the description.

Keep the Title Length Under 60 Characters

Google cuts off page titles longer than 60 characters, which is between 8 and 15 words with spaces included.

60 characters may seem like too little to play with, but a video titled “How to Get More Video Clicks on YouTube: 17 Great Methods to Increase Engagement” is way too long.

Cutting the title down to “17 Inspiring Ways to Get YouTube Engagement” is short, snappy, and says what you’re in for!

Use Emotive Words

While watching a YouTube video doesn’t cost people money, you are still attempting to engage people in a transaction, and as they browse YouTube, much like browsing a supermarket aisle, you can pull them in by stimulating a subconscious decision.

Using emotive words such as “helpful,” “competitive,” “daring,” “best-selling,” or “amazing” can provide a subconscious desire to click.

The words you use will depend on your target audience.

For example, fitness videos can benefit from emotive words that relate to “crushing” or “smashing” the competition.

Behave Yourself

The YouTube community guidelines state you should not engage in deceptive practices and spam, such as sensitive content that includes vulgar language, violent or dangerous content, misinformation, or regulated goods.

A shocking title may seem like a great way to engage people, but if it is not wholesome, it won’t make it to YouTube anyway.

Use Numbers Where Possible

Similar to creating blogs, a YouTube title with a number can stand out amongst others because people associate numbers with facts.

Additionally, a title with a number can stick out when people are scrolling down, especially when we are oversaturated with content.

A single number embedded within a lot of words can make a big difference.

Try Brackets

Finding different ways to cut through wordy YouTube titles is about getting people to stop scrolling for a second and see if the title is worth clicking on.

Using capitals on alternate words can create some sense of urgency can work (for example, “How to Write a Perfect YouTube Title That GETS CLICKS!!!“), and using brackets can also help too.

Making the Most of the Thumbnail

The thumbnail image is the snapshot of the video, so when people are looking for a video that speaks to them, putting the title in the thumbnail, as well as the keywords and a number of tools like brackets, numbers, and capitals can make your video title stand out.

Creating a Compelling Hook

Beyond the right keywords, capital usage, brackets, and numbers, you also need to harness the power of curiosity.

A great title that provides information at the beginning and offers a hook in the middle should increase curiosity.

When creating a compelling hook, consider the following:

  • Keep it short and under the 60-character limit.
  • Ask a question to address the audience directly and pique that curiosity.
  • Explain what your video is about using descriptive keywords, while above all else being honest.
  • Trigger emotions with action verbs and other emotion-grabbing words, such as “watch,” “click,” and “act!

Get Inspiration From Your Competitors

There is a good chance someone else has created a very similar video to you, and conducting initial research on YouTube by browsing and checking out what other creators or YouTube channels have used for videos similar to you can help you avoid their mistakes.

You can also take inspiration from other metrics, such as their engagement and when the video was published.

Provide Value

Many people create videos to stay on top of trending topics.

While you can use trending keywords at the beginning of the title or incorporate trending hashtags, you need to think long-term beyond small attention spans.

Providing clear value by showing what the video will do will work much better at creating winning relationships than chasing continuous trends.

What Else to Consider When Creating Video Titles

What Else to Consider When Creating Video Titles

Use the Right Frameworks

There are different approaches to creating a YouTube title, depending on the content you are creating, including the following:

  • If you are creating video promotions, such as music videos, make sure the creators or artists are named in the title of the video, while experimenting with full caps titles or a mixture of caps to bring a sense of urgency and provoke a greater emotional response.
  • Authoritative headlines, for example “___ explained.”
  • A list headline, which is very popular in blogs, such as “The Top 5 ___.”
  • Make the most of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) headlines, for example, “___ you may have missed.”
  • When creating educational content, a “how,” “what,” or “why” can push your video ahead of Google search queries because people are trying to find out the answer to a particular question.
  • When telling a story, whether it’s a personal experience or reporting on something, the title can work as a cliffhanger for the audience to gain insight into what is being discussed, which will require the audience to get involved if they want to see the story unravel.
  • For “How To” content, a “How To” title is a very simple way to help people solve problems for them, especially when it comes to niche subjects.

Test Different Titles

You can use YouTube analytics tools to track how many views and clicks the title gets, using this to inform future titles.

When you see which title performs the best, this can help you create a far more streamlined and effective title framework.

In Summary

YouTubers know the importance of a great video title and thumbnail.

It is the best way to get people to watch your video and help you stand out.

Creating an eye-catching title is essential, but the problem most of us have is we don’t have the time to create impactful titles that go into 60 characters.

This is why, at Optimo, we have created our own YouTube title generator.

You can use this as inspiration for title ideas, and ensure that you see how a well-optimized title can see you jump past so much of the competition.

Creating a great YouTube video title is a fine art, because it needs to say so much with so little, but once you create a great headline, you will reap the benefits.

Marketing Tasks. Done.

AI Powered

Far quicker than humans

2.5k +

People using Optimo

1 Million

Tool generations to date

Optimo AI Tools

Copyright © 2023 Optimo. All rights reserved.

Copyright © 2023 Optimo. All rights reserved.