YouTube Thursdays - Adding Custom Thumbnails to Your Videos

Real Estate Broker/Owner with ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors

YouTube Thursdays - Thumbnail Customization Options in YouTube 



You've likely noticed that YouTube automatically selects a thumbnail for your video. And while you have two others to choose from, the choices may not be what you want to convey. The ability to add a custom thumbnail is another good tool which offers greater control over your branding and video marketing. 


During your video shoots, make sure you take a number of stills. If appropriate, choose a person, or people. People are drawn to other people. At the very least, choose an image that reinforces your videos title and and content. Try to use bright colors, and add text in an editing program such as PicMonkey or Canva. 


You'll want to optimize the size too. YouTube recommends a resolution of 1280 x 720 ( with a minimum width of at least 640 pixels). Use a jpg, gif, bmp, or png and keep it under the 2MB limit with a 16:9 aspect ratio. 


First, make sure you have the option to add a custom thumbnail. If not, you may need to verify your YouTube account.

1. Verify your account:  Here is a link to an easy tutorial. 

2. Open your creator studio on your YouTube channel. 

3. Under video manager, choose videos.

4. Click on the video you want to customize.

5. Under the three standard choices, you'll see the option to upload a custom thumbnail. 

6. Upload the image and hit save.  




Much like Anita Clark 's Facebook Fridays, we encourage you to subscribe to each other's YouTube Channels - and take a minute to "like" or leave a comment. You can also add your own YouTube Channel in the comments below, and ask for subscribers. Be sure to subscribe back though - it's quid pro quo! 


Posted by


ViewHomes™ grew out of our passion for nature, beautiful surroundings, and peaceful environments. Starting together in an urban environment, over the years we've gravitated towards areas with smaller populations and less density. We now enjoy our lifestyle in a rural environment, but with close proximity to metropolitan areas where we appreciate all the amenities of fine restaurants, shopping, and an easy drive to an international airport.
Living in ViewHomes™ is like having “elbowroom for the soul”.






Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Roy Kelley 05/16/2019 01:00 AM
Real Estate Technology & Tools
The Art Of Marketing You
"Branding" in the Rain
YouTube Thursdays
The Marketing Maniacs
youtube thursdays
custom thumbnails

Post a Comment
Spam prevention
Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Hi Debb, what a great tutorial, you really do a great job, even I can follow them. When it comes to videos, I rather have someone else do the job and that's the truth.

Apr 04, 2019 10:21 AM #14
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Thank you very much for sharing your experience and your advice.

Apr 04, 2019 10:43 AM #15
John Henry
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Good info here Debb and Bernie.  I have not been able to get a custom thumbnail done for some reason.  Will follow your link.  Thanks very much!

Apr 04, 2019 02:14 PM #16
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

HI Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD - You always share great info to the YouTube Thursday group.  This is a detailed explanation to assist those who do not know this.  I particularly like the dimensions for the thumbnail. 

Apr 04, 2019 02:22 PM #17
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Interesting, Debb. I was just discussing custom thumbnail images for a website blog because sometimes the main photo does not adjust down well, and you can't tell what it is.

Apr 04, 2019 05:09 PM #18
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.  Gosh, darn it.  I wish the professional videos I had done provided some still options.  I only have the raw footage and finished products. Lessons learned.  

Apr 04, 2019 06:24 PM #19
Matthew Klinowski, PA
Downing-Frye - Naples, FL
Golf Community Real Estate Specialist

Thank you, I have been wondering about the thumbnail and why it wasn't the first image. Have a great evening!

Apr 04, 2019 07:40 PM #20
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Thanks so much, Debb and Bernie. I have just not paid much attention to the thumbnails other than selecting one I like, and have not done anything about adding a custom one. Now I know what to do. Thanks for the tutorial and reminder! I just LOVE the learning in this series.


Apr 04, 2019 08:44 PM #21
Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
RE/MAX Northwest. - Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Washington Agent/Broker & Market Authority!

What I love about you two is your ability to share Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD 

Apr 04, 2019 08:46 PM #22
Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400
The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803 - Plainview, NY
Long Island Home and Condo Specialists

Debb/Bernie, I knew about the 3 choices, but don't know why I never noticed Custom thumbnail? Great info!

Apr 04, 2019 11:46 PM #23
Dana Basiliere
Rossi & Riina Real Estate - Williston, VT
Making deals "Happen"

Deb & Bernie, I like to learn at least three new things each day.  It's 7:30 AM and I have one down two to go. Thanks for the tip.  I always wondered how they did it. 

Best, Dana B 

Apr 05, 2019 04:29 AM #24
Amanda S. Davidson
Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group Brokered By eXp Realty - Alexandria, VA
Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale

Debb and Bernie, I've gotten so that I take a still picture after I record a video of me with a normal smile so that I can make it the thumbnail. YouTube loves to catch me looking goofy in most of the suggested thumbnails. I like your idea to add text and will implement it. Thank you! Your YouTube Thursdays posts are something I always look forward too.

Apr 05, 2019 05:25 AM #25
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

I do this for every video that I create and often wonder why the default is not just the first picture that I have for the video.

Apr 05, 2019 07:22 AM #26
Equity Real Estate - Orem, UT

Great tip, thank you for sharing this information.

Apr 05, 2019 08:29 AM #27
M.C. Dwyer
Century 21 Showcase REALTORs - Felton, CA
Santa Cruz Mountains Property Specialist

Another great video tip - bookmarked for the future with gratitude Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD.

Apr 05, 2019 10:50 AM #28
Mark Parsons
Lokation Real Estate - Littleton, CO
Beautiful Colorado Home

Great tech tip, thank you!

Apr 05, 2019 01:22 PM #29
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

Love that stills of the line video "takes" !

Apr 05, 2019 02:05 PM #30
Ken Rohn, REALTOR®, GRI®
eXp Realty - Gilbert, AZ
Serving Gilbert, SE Maricopa and Pinal Counties

Great tutorial! It's such a simple thing to do once you know where to go to find it. You just saved me a ton of time and research.

Apr 05, 2019 02:26 PM #31
Mark Walker
Royal LePage Kelowna - Kelowna, BC
Condo Expert in Kelowna

Newbie question... How do you take stills during the video? Is it a camera setting?

Apr 05, 2019 09:06 PM #32
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

Great post. I have so much to lean about the videos. Is it just me or are there others who feel intimidated being filmed? Any suggestion how to get over that? 

Apr 06, 2019 08:57 AM #34
Post a Comment
Spam prevention
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?


Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD

REALTORS® in Clark County, WA
We'd Love to Help You Find, or Sell, Your ViewHome.™
Spam prevention

Additional Information