It’s Time to Make a BIG Decision

This is really hurting my channel, it’s likely really hurting your channel too. So I’m not going to do it anymore! Find out what is it now!

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⏱️⏱️VIDEO CHAPTERS⏱️⏱️
0:00 — This problem with video intros
1:07 — How intros hurt audience retention
2:22 — The difference between a hook and an intro
4:01 — YouTube’s most important currency

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=================== text video ====================

— Video intros, they absolutely
kill audience retention,

especially in the first minute.

So I’m not gonna use them
anymore. Let me prove it to you

and tell you what you should do instead.

I’ve gotta be honest, I
haven’t been a huge fan

of YouTube intros for quite a while now.

Far too many creators use them
and they’re far too similar.

Just imagine for one second

if YouTube introduced
this TV streaming feature.

After you’d seen one
video from that creator,

you would click that
button every single time

unless the intro is
intentionally different

every single time, and how
often does that happen?

And then there’s this.

(fingers snapping)

Have a guess what type of channel

this video intro comes from?

We’ll come back to that later.

I, myself, I’m not immune
to the video intro curse.

We used one for years
here in the vidIQ channel

before I binned it off, because
I thought it was too long,

even at four seconds in length.

But recently, and I don’t
know if you’ve noticed this,

but vidIQ has recently gone
through a rebranding exercise.

And as part of it, we got this cool,

what you call in the business,
little stinger ident,

and I thought at two seconds long,

it would be perfect to
reintroduce to the channel,

but apparently not.

Let me show you what I mean.

This is the audience retention
on one of our recent videos,

and watch at the moment the branded intro

kicks in on the video.

That is a noticeable steeper
drop in audience retention,

losing about 4% of the
audience in about four seconds.

All right, fair enough.

ViSN is verifying through a second video

and here we go again.

The branded intro kicks in

and this time we lose 5% of
the audience in two seconds.

Now this is a concerning coincidence.

And then we have this bad boy.

Now then what’s this?

(suspenseful music)

Ooh, ooh, hello.

Come to papa.

(suspenseful music)

Whoa.

That is pretty incredible, isn’t it?

An audience retention
drop of 12% in two seconds

or 24% in six seconds.

I’m not naive enough to say
that the brunt of the intro

was solely responsible for that drop,

but it probably played a
pretty significant role.

But before we look into that,

Tulia asked, «Do copyright
claims on YouTube shorts

«affect your channel?»

And the answer is they
don’t affect your channel,

but it may impact the possible
distribution of a video

and copyright claims.

Content will not count towards
any shorts bonus payments.

Now back to those videos intros.

Are we saying that even an
intro of just two seconds

is too long?

Well, it’s probably not so much,

the length of a video intro,

although anything more than
five seconds is too long.

It’s a very fast, if
an intro exists at all.

It’s what’s called a pattern interrupt,

which is usually a good thing

because it resets the viewer’s attention.

On the other hand,

a video intro resets the
viewers’ decision-making

leaving them to ask the question

while that intro is running,

«Do I really wanna watch this?»

Nah.

On the other hand, without a video intro,

there is no hard stop.

And that allows the viewer
over a longer period of time

to come to a natural conclusion

about whether or not
they’re in the right video.

And that allows your video
hook to do more work.

A video hook is designed
to start delivering

on the promises made in the title

and the thumbnail immediately

and show the viewer the direction
of a video going forward.

We go into a lot more
detail about this hook

through the video linked onscreen now.

But in summary, watch the first 15 seconds

of this video again,
that’s your video hook.

And if you’re still watching
this video three minutes in,

that hook worked.

On the other hand, a video
intro serves nothing more

than a little bit of brand identity,

which we kind of got all
over the place anyway.

All of which brings us back to this intro.

Any idea what type of channel this is?

I guarantee you whatever
answer you gave me, it’s wrong.

It’s for a sewing machine repair channel.

Let me just repeat that,

this video intro is for a
sewing repair machine channel.

How on earth is a viewer supposed to know

if they’re in the right
place at the very beginning

of a video?

I’ve said this before, but I
haven’t said it for a while,

time is the most valuable
currency on YouTube.

You, as a creator, really
value your time, don’t you?

Because you wanna get as
much done as possible.

So don’t waste that time with video intros

that just waste viewers’ time.

And if you disagree with me
on the idea of video intros,

that’s absolutely fine.

I’d love you to share your success stories

of implementing video
intros into your content.

On the other hand,

video outros are an
incredibly valuable use

of everybody’s time, but in
order to prove that to you,

you’re gonna have to click over here.

See what I did there.

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