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I wanted to share with you a few customization tips for Facebook and YouTube that I found out recently.  How to make a custom URL for your Facebook page and how to make a custom thumbnail for your YouTube videos.  Naturally, when I searched each of these topics, I felt as if I was the last person in the world to not have a custom URL for my Facebook page and custom thumbnails for my YouTube channel.  Technically, I have a YouTube channel, but the funny thing is, I have no videos posted to it.  Currently, I am posting videos to my Vimeo page.

Let’s face it’s 2015 and everyone is busy with their lives.  Work demands, spouse demands and children, well, they just demand everything.  Okay, enough of my feeble attempt at literary humor.  As you probably are aware, I run a fun little video company helping people make real films/videos from their files that just sit (forever sometimes) on their phone or computer’s hard drive.

I spend a good bit of my time helping my wife take pictures and edit videos for her blog.  This is where the question of the custom YouTube thumbnail and Facebook URL came up.  She has been blogging for years and recently has come to me with more technical questions such as changing these settings.  I put it off and put it off until finally, I told myself I was going to figure it out.  It took some searching and reading, but in the end, it was simple.

How Can You Set a Custom URL for Your Facebook Page?

I successfully changed my wife’s Facebook page, but for ease of illustration, I am using my page as an example.  You might be wondering what the big idea is with a custom URL for your Facebook page?  You have a Facebook business page and thousands of likes already.  Yeah, but have you ever checked to see how the URL reads out?  If it looks like a long strand of random numbers and words, you probably don’t have your page set up correctly.

Here’s how my JaWaVi Films Facebook URL used to look

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It worked, but that is not exactly easy to remember and worse yet, not very business card friendly.  With the help of Pagemodo.com and their post on “How to Get a Custom URL for Your Facebook Page“, I was able to follow their detailed instructions and change it pretty easily.

Now, my JaWaVi Films Facebook URL page looks like this

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Much better, more professional and easier to link to an email or a business card.  One, little caveat that Pagemodo and Facebook alike both warn you about, but I wanted to also stress it.  This action of changing the custom URL on your page can only be done ONCE. Just make sure you spell it correctly.  I wouldn’t even want to try to imagine how hard it would be to fix a mistake.

How Can You Set a Custom Thumbnail for your YouTube Channel?

This one baffled me for years when helping my wife with her YouTube makeup tutorials.  I always assumed those three thumbnail suggestions were all you got.  You probably know what I’m referring to, the thumbnails where it has you in mid-blink or one which is slightly off center.  You’ve got a better chance of hitting the Power Ball lottery than receiving a decent auto-generated YouTube thumbnail.  Until now.

For Example, my wife uploaded this video to her YouTube makeup channel this morning.  Here is one of the “auto-generated” YouTube thumbnail choices.  It’s not bad, but this doesn’t help add to the description of what her video is all about.  It is just part of the video when she is walking towards the camera.

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Now, this is a custom thumbnail.  A picture of me taking a photograph of her while she is posing on a bench at the garden.  I was also able to add the title of the YouTube video at the bottom of the picture.  This custom thumbnail will certainly generate more clicks from viewers to watch the video versus the one above.  Sometimes it’s the little technical changes that make all of the difference.  For adding font to those pictures, I like PicMonkey.com and also Phonto (an iPhone app).

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This article from Online Income Teacher was helpful for me in conquering this issue.  “How To Add Custom YouTube Thumbnail To Your Videos“.  Scroll down to the bottom of the article and it is spelled out for you in a few easy steps.  Basically, what you will need to do is to verify your YouTube channel from your Video Manager section.  Once this is done, you will enter your phone number to receive a text message. Think of the text message as a pin to continue to advance in your customization.  If it still doesn’t allow you to enter custom thumbnails, one extra step will be to become a YouTube partner enabling you to monetize your channel.

I hope these two little helpful tips make a difference for you.  If you have any questions about this post or want to inquire about video and editing services, feel free to send me an email.  JaWaViFilms@gmail.com

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