By Voight Thornton, for GoDaddy

If you create videos for your small business, it’s important to make videos that will keep viewers engaged. Holding the attention of your audience is not just vital to boosting your conversion rates and getting more subscribers — it’s also a critical element to help your ranking with YouTube. It’s not just about views anymore; your viewers’ retention matters the most. Google and YouTube are now looking at the amount of time your viewer spends watching each of your videos. Providing first-class video content is key to keeping video viewers engaged and building your company’s credibility.

So let’s take a look at what it takes to keep viewers engaged!

Adios, Talking Head

Get rid of the talking head! There’s nothing worse than watching someone ramble on and on in a video that they made just for the heck of it. This might have worked in the early days, but not anymore. All your videos must have direction and a bit of spice in your delivery.

Add B-roll footage

B-roll footage is extra or secondary footage that can help move the story forward and reinforce important points to keep your video entertaining. You can film great b-roll footage or purchase it online via various websites.

Include music

Use music if you want to effectively pull on the heartstrings of your audience. Music helps to evoke emotion; it can create a sense of happiness, fear, romance, or even adventure in the video.

Open loops

Opening and closing loops are essential for increasing video engagement. Opening loops are generally two to six seconds long and reveal the main benefit of the video. This prepares your video community of what to expect in the video. Closed loops are four to seven seconds long and use personal branded logos, animation or text to deliver your call to action. Make sure to open that loop as soon as possible so your viewers will stay interested, and create a powerful closed loop to build your video community.

Increase your Reach

Ask any top video guru how they climbed to the top — what’s their secret? Usually, they emphasize a loyal fan base and a promise to deliver valued content. It takes time to build a community of fans, but if you truly connect and engage with them — and showcase your social promise — your fans will want to come back for more. For example, converse with your top fans, use social media to extend your channel’s reach, and also generate excitement with live events like Google Hangout). Tap into your audience so they become a social army of promoters for your brand.

Tell a story

The power of storytelling is paramount. It’s the way people passed around vital information for thousands of years before writing, reading or even texting. No one walks away from a good story before it’s finished — which means your viewers are far more likely stay to the end of your video if they’re intrigued to see how your story turns out.

Keep it moving

Pop quiz! What’s the fastest way to lose your audience? Make a montone, stiff and static video. Even if you’ve decided to stay in the same place for your entire video, you still can drop in interesting graphics or video transitions to keep your viewers engaged.

Make it personal

You are the most essential element for engaging your audience. When you’re talking to the camera, approach your delivery as if you’re actually talking to one person. Be natural and sincere. Keeping this mindset also allows you to focus on value-driven content.

About the Author:

Voight Thornton, author of 10 Ways Every Business Owner Can Boost Their Visibility by Using YouTube, is an expert in using video for business marketing. His work has been featured in numerous publications. Voight also serves as a small business consultant for GoDaddy and CEO of 6mic Films Production company in Scottsdale, Ariz. Connect with Voight on Google+.

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How to Make Videos that People Want to Watch