YouTube Thumbnail Sizes and Best Practices (New for 2019)

Are you looking to get more views on your YouTube videos? One easy way to do that is to improve your video thumbnails.

Your video’s thumbnail is just as important as its title when it comes to attracting views. Thumbnails draw the attention of potential viewers and help them decide which video they should ultimately decide to watch—hopefully yours!

Of course, it’s a good idea to have a great video behind the thumbnail. That’s why I highly recommend you also check out our Ultimate Guide for How to Make a YouTube Video.

But, anyway, what exactly is a thumbnail? Thumbnails are reduced-size versions of images or videos that originally got their name from being about the size of a human thumbnail.

YouTube thumbnails act as the book covers of the online video world. Our decision whether or not to click on a video often depends on the thumbnail. An eye-catching image can draw us in, while a boring or blurry thumbnail can easily deter us.

By having better video thumbnails than other videos, you’re more likely to win video clicks in YouTube and other search engines. That’s why creating a great custom YouTube thumbnail is so important.

In this blog post, I’ll walk you through the exact size your YouTube thumbnail should be and I’ll also cover some thumbnail best practices.

First, let’s start with the exact size you should make your YouTube thumbnails!

The ideal thumbnail size is 1280 × 720 pixels with a minimum width of 640 pixels, and the ideal ratio for YouTube players and previews is 16:9. Along with the correct size, you’ll also want to keep in mind the ratio, file size, and file type of your thumbnail. Below is a handy guide you can reference as you create a thumbnail for your video.

2019 YouTube Thumbnail Sizes

1280 x 720 pixels
– Minimum width: 640 pixels
– Recommended ratio: 16:9
– Maximum file size: 2MB
– Accepted file types: .JPG, .GIF, .BMP, or .PNG

Now that we’ve covered the technical details of your YouTube thumbnail, let’s dive into the creative. How do you make a great-looking thumbnail that entices potential viewers? Great question! We’ve pulled together some tips that you’ll want to keep in mind while creating YouTube thumbnails.

YouTube Thumbnail Best Practices

Keep It Simple

Be concise! YouTube thumbnails are small. And they’re even smaller when they’re viewed on a mobile device, which is extremely common since YouTube is often watched on mobile phones. In fact, on an average day in 2018, there were 1 billion mobile views. That’s why you should try to avoid adding too much text or too small of text. People won’t be able to read it, and thus wasting valuable thumbnail real estate.

To make sure you keep your thumbnail simple, avoid adding the entire title of your video to the image. Your video title will appear right next to your thumbnail anyways. Try to shorten your title to just a few short words, or if possible, you can simply use only a still image with a logo. Still images work great for thumbnails because they quickly give a snapshot of what viewers will find in your video without you having to create an image entirely from scratch.

Use Contrasting Colors

You’ve seen this tragic mistake before: white text on a light background or black text on a dark background. Yikes. As I mentioned before, thumbnails are small, and there are a lot of them. You need yours to stand out, so if a viewer can’t easily read the text on your thumbnail, it’s likely your video will be skipped.

Pay Attention to Logo Placement

Adding your logo to your YouTube thumbnails is a good idea. It can help with brand awareness, however, how and where you place your logo on your thumbnails is important. First, make sure your logo isn’t too big. You don’t want to distract from the overall message of the thumbnail, but if it’s too small there’s no sense of adding it at all.

Adding your logo to the corner of the thumbnail image works well, especially if you have other text on your thumbnail, but avoid the right bottom corner. Why? Because that’s where YouTube displays the length of your video for viewers. If you put your logo there it’ll be covered up and make your video look unprofessional.

Avoid Irrelevant or Misleading Images

No one likes clickbait. That’s why It’s important to make sure that your YouTube thumbnail accurately depicts what a viewer is going to find in your video. If it doesn’t, you could hurt your reputation or brand.  And even worse, YouTube could potentially stop showing your videos in search results if your bounce rates are too high.

A thumbnail’s purpose is to give context, so using an image that doesn’t depict what a viewer is actually going to see won’t benefit you. It’s a good idea to find the most important point of your video and highlight that by creating a thumbnail around it. It’s best to balance creating a visual teaser without revealing too much. Only show enough to make users want to click through and see what you have to say.

How to Make Your Own YouTube Thumbnail

Now, let’s put what we learned about thumbnails to use by actually creating a custom thumbnail image. An easy way to create a YouTube thumbnail is to use TechSmith Snagit.

Here’s a step-by-step on how to create a YouTube thumbnail in Snagit.

1. Download a free trial of Snagit.
It’s really that easy!

2. Import your video into Snagit.
If you’ve recorded screen video or your webcam with Snagit, you can skip importing your video.

Import Video to Snagit Library

3. Use Snagit’s convert to PNG button to turn your video still into an image.
Play through your video and find the exact spot you’d like to turn into an image.

Convert Video Still to PNG

4. Add text, callouts, arrows, your logo, and more right within the Snagit Editor.
Don’t forget to keep in mind the YouTube Thumbnail best practices—simple, contrasting colors, logo placement, etc.

YouTube Thumbnail with Text and Logo

5. Save your image to upload to YouTube for the video thumbnail.

Now, go ahead and try making your own YouTube thumbnail in Snagit, or feel free to use whatever software you feel most comfortable using. Then, upload your custom thumbnail to YouTube before posting your video.

Hopefully your new, customized thumbnail will bring you more views, clicks, and engagement!

The post YouTube Thumbnail Sizes and Best Practices (New for 2019) appeared first on Welcome to the TechSmith Blog.

Taylor Swift: You Need to Calm Down

In this pop-star power-move she co-directed with Drew Kirsch, Taylor Swift makes her own contribution to LGBT Pride Month with a massive crush of gay and/or gay-friendly celebrities, including Adam Lambert, Billy Porter, Ellen Degeneres, Hayley Kiyoko, Laverne Cox, Rupaul, Ryan Reynolds — even her purported arch-rival, Katy Perry, shows up to bury the hatchet.

The post Taylor Swift: You Need to Calm Down appeared first on Studio Daily.

Bullies don? own you

You sad little man…You are quite honestly not that important to me.”

Those words were directed at me by my former employer.

The words and the personal attack are supposed to hurt and humiliate me, but they simply sound like the taunts of a schoolyard bully. Words like those might have affected me when I was 10 or 11 years old on the playground, but as a 30 year veteran in the creative field, they strike me as sad.

It’s a fact that in your career you are likely to… no scratch that. You WILL interact with people who are self-important.

Colleagues, Managers, Clients, VP’s and CEO’s. Part of what makes them who they are is the need to lift themselves by belittling others. Working in the creative and media field, I’ve worked with quite a few ‘self-important’ people.

Some will be self-important in public for all the world to see.
Some prefer to do it when nobody is in the room.
Some prefer to do it from the anonymity of their social media profiles.

The goal is to validate themselves at the expense of your self-worth and confidence. They are far more important than anyone else in the room, be they employees, colleagues or clients. And they’re not afraid to tell you.

I’m here to tell you, especially those of you starting out in your career, the words are meaningless. The only way these words have power is if you allow them to. It’s not about having a ‘thick skin.’ That means you’re shielding yourself from the words.

It’s about completely eliminating the power that a person’s words have because they are truly meaningless.

A Personal Attack Means The Bully Has Already Lost.

A personal attack against you or your character generally means the person has absolutely nothing of substance to attack you with. Your actions, your work, your productivity are all where they should be or better. But the bully must still must make themselves superior to those around them. So they attack the person.

Let me repeat that. When someone makes a personal attack, they have already lost. In order to ‘win’ by appearance, they try to hurt you personally.

“Gosh. You really do need help. Let it go. Please. Go away.”

That second taunt was actually surprising given that he’s been in the medical device field for over 20 years. I would have expected some sensitivity towards mocking mental health.

Life and your career is not going to be a straight trajectory where everyone loves your work and you all get along. That’s not life and that’s not going to be your career. You will have highs and lows, incredible teams, so-so teams and everything in between. The one constant in your career, and the only thing you can absolutely control, is you.

You control your actions, your responses when confronted with behavior that either goes against company policy or your own personal code of conduct. When that situation arises, and it will, how should you respond? I’m the first to say, that’s really tricky. While today’s HR and corporate culture is all about inclusion, diversity and ‘zero tolerance for retaliation,’ real-life is much more complicated. Particularly if your issues include senior level executives. While you may not be fired directly, there are ways to ‘encourage’ you to leave the company.

Don’t Do Anything Rash or Too Quickly.

I cannot tell you what to do when situations arise. You are unique. Your situation is unique. You were hired for a reason. That usually includes providing a positive impact on the company and those around you.

What I CAN tell you is to not do anything rash or too quickly. Everybody has a bad day. Unless a person crosses a line that is unforgivable in your personal code of conduct, my advice is to observe, make notes and see if a pattern develops.

Here are two real-world examples and my actions for each.

One: At a previous position in Atlanta, I was directly intimidated by a person much more senior than myself. Just two weeks into the job she sat me down for coffee and said “I don’t know why they hired you, I have no idea why you’re here.” The person was very loud, bullying and abrasive in the office not only towards me but to much of the staff in the department.

I decided to discuss her actions with my direct report and other executives in my department. I was told, “ Oh that’s just ——-, it’s how she is.” I honestly don’t care who you are, bullying and acting out towards your colleagues because ‘that’s how you are” is not something to be tolerated. Ever.

I decided not to approach HR in that company because it was apparent the senior executives would defend her over anyone else in the department. While I loved the creative team in the studios and I did stay almost 18 months in that position, ultimately it was an easy choice to resign from that situation. Upon leaving the company, I did submit a full report, with cited examples to HR. I have no knowledge what happened after that.

Two: With the Florida position, neither the executive, nor anyone else, was never negative towards me while I was in the room. I only observed both he and one other person in the firm using disrespect and other behavior I found objectionable towards others. As a senior executive in that firm, I felt comfortable meeting with and discussing what I observed with the head of HR multiple times over the course of a few months.

While I had positive discussions with HR, it was apparent that the behavior would not change. It was a much more difficult decision for me to walk away from that firm. When I started, the three person digital team was leaving en masse. 9 months later, I left the company with a handpicked team of 2 video editors, director of photography and production coordinator along with a greatly enhanced production workflow and 2 more editors waiting in the wings. I was building an incredible creative team that was turning out amazing work and I genuinely liked the staff in the firm. But as my discussions with HR didn’t change any behavior, I prepared myself to leave the company and became active on LinkedIn seeking out new opportunities 4 months before I took my current role.

The resignation began amicable with me agreeing to stay on for 4 weeks to ensure a television pilot would not be disrupted as well as planned filming in Europe. Again, I provided a full written report to HR with cited examples of behavior and areas that warranted further discussion. With 4 weeks there was plenty of time to have group discussions. The CEO’s response to my written report was to have his senior executives and HR escort me out of the building the very next day. The firm paid me for that week but removed the additional 3 weeks of pay I was promised as part of the original resignation.

Two different positions, two different situations. One where I the target and the other where I observed others. One where I declined to notify HR during my employment and one where I actively engaged HR.

In both cases I made a judgement by observing the situation and the potential ramifications of reporting the issues. In both cases I spoke with colleagues before approaching HR. In both cases I was ready to walk away from the situation. There was nowhere else in either company for me to use my skills. To continue my career, it would have to be elsewhere.

If It’s Time To Walk Away, Do NOT Slack In Your Current Job.

Now here’s the most important piece of advice I can give you when you make the decision that it’s time for you to move on. Do NOT slack in your current job. In fact, quite the opposite. You should absolutely excel in your current position when you’re looking elsewhere. You want your old company to remember you as a positive, solid contributor all the way through to the time you leave. That attitude and character will follow you as you move through your career.

That positive attitude also eliminates the power of the bully. You will be remembered as a positive force who did good by your former employer. Burning bridges and taking a ‘slash and burn’ approach to leaving a company will only come back to reflect on your character as you move through your career.

“You sad little man…You are quite honestly not that important to me.”

Those words are meaningless. Bullies in business are meaningless. You have worth in this world.


Some suggested additional reading:

Bullies and Business: Learning From a Strategy of Self-Preservation.

Workplace Bullies: How to Best the Business Bullies

Don’t Let Bullies Turn Your Workplace Toxic

Author’s Note: This is an article I never intended to write, my writings are usually about media production and branding. However I was inspired by multiple articles in my LinkedIn feed during the month of May regarding bullying and mental health including multiple first-hand accounts. Bullying and mental health in the workplace is a topic that should not be approached lightly, nor should it be ignored. We can all do better in the workplace and in our communities. I want to thank my LinkedIn Network, many of whom contributed their time to review and assist me with this article. I also want to thank my colleagues in the creative field who did the same.

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