Saturday, June 20, 2015

YOUTUBE CARDS: Why Use Cards & How to Make the Most of CARDS

Why Use YouTube Cards and How to Make the Most of These
The two arrows show what the cards are and where they are positioned on your video.
So remember to reserve that space for your cards if you are using this feature.

Add interactivity to your videos by adding CARDS. On the surface this looks similar to ANNOTATIONS except the squarer format is more compact, looks tidier, cards are stacked on top of each other in a vertical column, and are aligned close to the right-hand edge (suggested maximum is 3).

Functionally it is less intrusive to the viewer because cards are not shown to viewers unless they click on the small, circular "i" icon (information icon) which sits at the top RHS and is visible right from the beginning but hardly noticeable because it is so unobtrusive. Click X to shut cards down.

Another advantage of a card is that it will display not just its playlist but those of other cards as well (in a vertical column) if you have more than one card. This is not possible with annotations with their single links. You may have seen some videos with many annotations, which in order to view them all, will require many clicks! Not so with CARDs.

If you make beautiful thumbnails for your videos and elect one of these as your Playlist's default thumbnail, then the CARD for that playlist will be represented by that beautiful thumbnail.

So design great thumbnails to make that CARD (and therefore the video / playlist it represents) POP. Below are some examples of how CARDS can look wherever you elect to display these. Consider them as effective promos of your favorite videos or playlists ... and all for free.

YOUTUBE CARD TIP: Do your best to create great videos and thumbnails as well, then insert cards, sit back and let YouTube do the rest - it knows best how to serve your content, and when and to whom.

However if your viewer clicks this away the option is not available again until the time that YOU elected, perhaps towards the end? This time your card icon carries a 'long-tailed' text link viz. "Suggested THE TITLE OF YOUR PLAYLIST ". YT also positions your card at the most strategic location on your video's 2-D real estate for capturing the most views.

YT suggests you place these cards, if you have more than one, well spaced along the time-scale ie. not too close to each other for good reasons.

I have inserted the first CARD at around the mid-point, on the assumption that if someone is hooked by your content at that point, they may wish to skip the rest of your INTRO / TRAILER and jump straight to your playlist.

If not then you have a second chance at enticing your viewer with another card invite to watch more content towards the end of your trailer.
YT's smart AI interface will show you this message if your cards are too close to each other: "Cards are more effective when they're not too close to one another. Try spacing them out."

You can create cards by going: EDIT / CARDS / INSERT the link to your video/playlist/website, etc. Then test it out by clicking on the i icon and see how your card appears on your elected video.

You can see that it's the interactivity, the greater, one-click reach as well as the standout unobtrusiveness that makes this feature more superior to the older "annotations" tool.

Keep the maximum number of cards to 3. TWO cards is a good number as it gives choice but not does not crowd your real estate space nor slow down undecisive audiences by presenting them with too many choices.
Verdict? A YouTube Card gives your wider Content more chances to find an Audience. When played right it's the ACE UP YOUR SLEEVE!

Question is: Do You hold An ACE?

Or, Better Yet, A Handful of ACES?