It’s an incredibly short period of time, akin to the memory of a goldfish (9 seconds). But in that time, you need to intrigue the audience enough to keep watching.
While it’s not exactly a secret, YouTube themselves have shared the importance of your opening seconds via their Creator Academy, most creators still don’t apply that knowledge.
Instead of telling you the importance of those seconds, we’re going to give you some ideas on how to hook them by making those seconds count!
Start off strong
In the first 5 seconds, make a big impact!
Consider the start of this article. First, we told you a short period of time (that answered the title). Then reiterated what that time meant. Finally, hitting you again with the significance of that timeframe.
We hit you with an important fact that encouraged you to keep reading. Your opening seconds need to have an impact on the viewer - so always start off on a strong foot with your videos.
Tease the video
Within that 15 seconds, you want to be able to tease what’s coming next.
There has to be some intrigue into the rest of your video. You need to have your viewers asking themselves ”I wonder why he said that?” or “Why her face was like that?”
A good tease sets the premise for what the rest of the video will answer. Will it be a good thing? Is she in trouble? How did he get into that situation? If you aren’t creating intrigue, you’re not hooking the viewer.
You want your recurring viewers to know what’s coming next and your new viewers to get a quick introduction to you. How you do that is up to you.
Perhaps you have a jingle and a logo stinger or a common intro sentence. Or maybe it’s something else that helps brand your videos. It benefits you by creating consistency and gives the audience something to expect.
Make your title/thumbnail perfect
If you want to give yourself an even better chance of hooking the viewer, make perfect thumbnails and titles.
Your title should intrigue and give the viewer an idea of your content. The thumbnail needs to support that by being bright, interesting and unique.
For non-subscribers, the reason someone will click on your video is the thumbnail and title. Then the 15 seconds will determine whether they will stick around or not.