How to write a catchy YouTube title and description

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Great YouTube marketing starts with great YouTube titles and descriptions. If you post an amazing video on YouTube, no matter the content, if the title is not catchy, then it will probably not get many views. In this sense, YouTube videos work just like articles: if the title is not appealing, it won’t get many clicks. 

What are YouTube titles?

Titles are the names of your YouTube videos and they are mandatory in order to post anything on YouTube. This means that you can’t post a YouTube video without a title.

They vary in length and are extremely important. Looking at it from a SEO (Search Engine Optimization, that is) point of view, the title of your YouTube video is the most important piece of content you can create. And the most challenging. 

How many times have you stared blankly at your screen trying to come up with a good email subject or an interesting title for your paperwork? Many YouTubers can relate to this when it comes to naming their videos.

But creativity is not the only factor that counts when creating a YouTube title. You will also have to do some research. First, go for the trends. Even if you are doing the most niche kind of video, you will find out some relevant information out there that will help you out with the title. Platforms like Google Trends or Answer the Public will help you out with what people are looking for online in relation to certain keywords. 

How to title your YouTube videos to get more views

  1. Length: try to keep the title within 70 characters, as that’s the amount of characters YouTube shows to users on the search page. So if you write a longer title, it won’t be shown fully.
  2. Use exact keywords: as the word implies, these are specific words that define your content and will help you to position it better on search engines. Mostly YouTube algorithm finds the exact keyword matches. For example if you are doing a makeup video, be sure to include the word “makeup” somewhere.
  3. Start with a keyword: if possible start the title with the keyword you want your video to be associated with.
  4. Numbers & how tos: when possible try to include numbers (for example “5 habits to a healthier life”) or the word “how to” (for example “how to edit videos”), both things tend to get attention from viewers.
  5. Avoid clickbait titles: these are phrases you just put to get clicks. For example a title like “how to get rich in one day” sounds impossible and YouTube can punish you for doing it. Go for “how to get rich” instead and avoid unrealistic promises.

What are YouTube descriptions?

Title sounds like an obvious thing, but why are YouTube descriptions so important? Obviously they work as a way to give a preview about what your video is about and help viewers decide whether they want to watch it or not. But most importantly, done right, YouTube descriptions can help your videos rank in YouTube’s “suggested search” function, boost SEO, subscriptions, view counts, and watch time. 

So if you are wondering if YouTube video descriptions matter, let us just tell you that you can’t take them for granted. 

There are two types of YouTube descriptions:

  1. A YouTube channel description is the text on your channel’s “About” page. It is a short text explaining a bit about what your channel is about and what users can expect to see there.
  2. A YouTube video description is the text below each of your videos. It helps to explain what the video is about so users can decide whether to watch it or not.

Tips for writing YouTube descriptions

If you want some ideas for YouTube descriptions, be sure to follow these tips to get your creativity flowing:

  1. Use keywords: same as for the titles, keywords must appear on the description to help your video reach more viewers.
  2. Repeat the keywords: repetition lets YouTube know a particular term is relevant to your video or channel. So use your keywords between two or three times, in both the description and title, so your content can rank higher.
  3. Be human: as much as you will want to use keywords, the text still will need to make some sense. 
  4. Add links: not only this will help you to promote your social media channels for example, but adding links will improve your SEO. You can also link to products you talk about on your video and, of course, if you have a sponsor you can include a call to action to their site.
  5. Add hashtags, but not too many. Stick to less than 10 hashtags and make sure that they are relevant to your video.
  6. Pay close attention to the first three lines as these are what viewers see before the “See more” button. The first line of your video description is also what appears under your video in search results, so you want to get straight to the point if you want people to click on it.
  7. Give credit when you need to. For example, if you use some of our royalty free music under the Use & Mention license (this is when you are not monetizing your video), then you will always have to include a credit. Something like “(name of the song) by HookSounds. Go check them out at www.hooksounds.com”. This can be applied to any other resource or gear you use.
  8. If your video is long, include timestraps when talking about relevant subjects. This will help the viewers to go directly to the part of your video they are most interested in. This is especially useful on tutorials or really long videos such as vlogs.
  9. Don’t forget about call to actions such as “follow me on Instagram” or “Subscribe for more”. Even if you say it on the video, you can always include it on the description as well.
  10. Be clear about the content of the video: go to the point and let your viewers know what they can actually expect from the video.

How to edit YouTube video title and description

Thankfully YouTube allows you to edit the title and description (as well as other things such as the thumbnail) even if your video has already been published. To do so follow these steps:

  1. Go to your YouTube Studio and click on Content.
  2. Select the video you want to edit and click on the icon that looks like a pencil on the right.
  3. There you will be able to change any aspect you want to, including the title and description.

Practice makes perfect

Great YouTube marketing requires a lot of practice. So don’t expect to nail the perfect video and description on the first video you are posting. Most importantly, learn from the great: there are so many incredible and creative YouTubers out there, so start paying attention to how they write their titles and descriptions. You will be soon nailing it too!