How to optimise video for YouTube

YouTube is a great free marketing tool for your school. Follow our top tips to make sure you optimise video for YouTube and using this social media platform to its full advantage.

We discussed the power of video marketing in our blog post The Power of Video Marketing in Schools, it’s a great way to engage your audience and introduce them to both the core values and day-to-day life at your school. But how can you make sure your videos are successful and are receiving optimum visibility?

By neglecting to use tags and only adding a brief title and description to your video, you are making it very hard for people to search for your video. Instead, add a clear and interesting title that gets people clicking on your video thumbnail. What kind of words should you be using in your title, description and tags? Fortunately, there is a very easy way to find the most commonly searched keywords on YouTube that are related to your niche.


When you begin to type in a word in the YouTube search box, you will notice that a submenu pops up with a list of suggested keyword phrases that closely resemble what you were typing in. These keyword phrases are actually the most commonly searched phrases with that word in it. So, all you need to do is use one or two of these suggested keyword phrases in your title and then your video will easily rank better in the search results.

This keyword trick can also work for the description and tags of your video listing. The description box allows you to post up to 1,000 characters so you’ll have a lot more room to post keyword phrases.


As for the tags, use the same keyword phrases for this that you used in your description. Tagging words like your location, the name of your school and key words to do with education would be a great start but the more tags the better, just make sure you keep them relevant.

Video Thumbnail

The thumbnail of your video is the next best thing to focus on. People who are searching for videos look at the thumbnail pictures before even the titles. YouTube automatically creates three thumbnail choices based on the video content you just uploaded. However, it is highly recommended you upload your own custom thumbnail which is attractive and will make people want to click on it. Simply edit your video in Info and settings within the video manager to add a new image.


Create a unique 5 to 10 second introduction in each of your videos before the main content starts. These introductions are a great way of branding your videos and getting people to remember them.

Branding Watermark

You can also add a small watermark of your School logo in the corner of your video to brand your videos. This is a great way to keep your videos professional and protect your content.

How to add a watermark to your videos:

  • On the My Channel’ page select ‘Video Manager’ at the top of the page, above the header
  • Select ‘Channel’ in the menu, then select ‘Branding’
  • Add a watermark, this will apply to all of your uploaded videos
  • Change your start time to ‘Entire video”
  • Your YouTube videos now include a branded watermark!

Have you found our YouTube video optimisation tips useful? Follow us on Twitter for more great trips to enhance your school branding.