You know that little picture that you click on to watch a video?
Sometimes the image that shows up is pretty unflattering – it’s usually someone with their mouth open or their eyes are closed. Don’t let this happen to you!
Normally when you upload a video to YouTube, they give you three choices for this image, which is called a thumbnail. Very often, none are great options. But, you can unlock the ability to upload a custom thumbnail just by verifying your YouTube account.
Just go into account settings and click verify – then it will ask for a phone # for them to text a verification code to. That’s it. They just want to make sure you are a real person. There’s no other requirements.
Unfortunately, YouTube menus can be very confusing, so here are some screenshots to show you how to find the verification button.
Now you can go back into the screen where you can change the title, etc for your video (called video manager) and upload any picture you’d like to use as a thumbnail. I often save a good looking still frame while editing, but you can use any image you like – we recommend using jpeg or jpg format. A great thing about this is that you can add some text which may boost your chance of people actually clicking to watch your video when they see it in Facebook or find it in Google. For example ….