I often feel that most of my job, as YouTube creator is just getting people to click on my videos. The thumbnail and the title both need to scream, “CLICK ON ME!!!”

Enticing titles are critical for the success of a YouTube video. But what can we do to actually create more clickable titles? On this podcast, we are interviewing Jake Thomas of who breaks down why certain titles work, why others don’t and the three emotions we need to consider when crafting our own video titles.

Jake became an expert on titles by analyzing what was working for other people. He would take 5 videos on the same topic and see 4 videos getting 10k views and one get 100k. He made it his mission to figure out what made it stand out. After analyzing this for years, Jake came up with a process to create good & engaging titles.

It all boils down to three emotions: curiosity, fear and desire. To get the clicks, you need to invoke: curiosity + fear or curiosity + desire.

But How?

There are many strategies to invoke curiosity + desire. First of all, it’s important to know who your video is for. For instance, you can capitalize on this by using the term “Beginner.” A beginner will find that video and click on it every time. Why? It makes that task seem approachable to that audience. Another example would be “How to invest in your 20s” Here, you are calling out a specific group of people. A 20 year old is more likely to click on that video than just, “How to invest in stocks.”

Another strategy is to add a timeframe. For example: “How to prepare you taxes in 1 hr.” Your desire to do it quickly is being used along with your curiosity of wanting to know how. Or you can use a contrast – “How to make your boring taxes fun.” Your viewer thinks, I want to do that. But how?? Then, they will click your video to find out.

To invoke curiosity + fear, you focus on the negative instead of the positive. Mr. Beast spent 50 hrs buried alive – which is a lot of people’s biggest fear. Viewers watched that video because they were curious to see what that would really be like. Another way is to point out something others want to avoid, “The Biggest Mistake I made when opening a business” or “My biggest regrets in parenting.” People want to avoid making those mistakes too, so they click.

Another way to do this is to look at an authority figure in the industry. For Desire: “How to play basketball like Michael Jordan” or “Doctors do this to lose weight.” For Fear: “Elon Musk’s biggest mistake.”

It doesn’t matter how enticing your video content is if no one ever clicks. So put the time into crafting the title and thumbnail first, before you even shoot your content. “How to get a 6 pack in 30 days.” is a great title, but if you never mention 30 days in your content it won’t work. Put in the time and think it through. It’s worth it.

Power Tip

There are two new features for YouTube Shorts on an iphone.

There is both a lighting & a retouch option under “more” on the camera tool bar. If you click the “sun”, it will enhance the lighting when you record shorts for YouTube. After that, if you are in a poor lighting situation, it will make it look significantly better. The retouch is the button that looks like a magic wand and it will smooth out your skin and enhance your appearance.

To find these:

Open the YouTube App – Hit the “+” button on the bottom of your screen. – Create a short – More (on right right side of the screen) – Lighting (sun) Enhance (magic wand).

If you have any comments, reactions, questions, a YouTube tip to share, or just want to say hi, please ! We may use it in an upcoming podcast episode. Until then…

Keep changing lives,

Tim Schmoyer