How to add clickable links to your videos

Knowing how to create and get results from your Lumen5 videos is essential to reaching your marketing and sales goals. In particular, knowing how to place links and calls-to-action (CTAs) is crucial to increasing your conversion rates.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could add a clickable link to your video? Your audience’s attention is on the video, so a link to your product, service or website would be a match made in heaven!

Unfortunately, videos themselves don’t support links. But some social networks and video services allow you to add links in their own unique, proprietary ways.

Certain social channels like Facebook will only enable you to add CTAs and links that meet their terms of service for ads; so it’s vital you learn the rules pertaining to the social media sites you use.

This article will walk you through the process of adding clickable links to your videos in Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.

How to Make Your Videos Clickable in Facebook

If you look through all the brand updates that show up on your Facebook feed, you’ll see that some look more professional than others. That’s because the professional looking ones make proper use of Facebook’s formatting tools.

Think about it: the Facebook feed is really all about design. It is structured to encourage users to click on items in the newsfeed; so if you increase opportunities to click on your videos, you’ll be able to get more traffic to your site or page.

Here’s how you can add embedded links to your Facebook native videos:

  1. You will first need to sign up for Facebook Business Manager and set up an advertising account. Here are instructions on how to do that. (Don’t worry, it won’t cost you a thing.)
  2. After you set up Business Manager, go to the dropdown menu and click ‘Page Posts’.
  3. Next, click on ‘Create Post’ and fill out the post details. You will have options to add a URL, along with a tracking code, to your post. You will also get the option to add a call to action button which could be, Shop Now, Learn More, Sign Up, Book Now, Download, etc.
  4. Next, hit the ‘Create Post’ button at the bottom of the post creation form and your post will show up at the top of your ads posts list.
  5. You can then schedule and publish your post. Select your post and click on the ‘actions’ dropdown to choose whether you want to publish right now or schedule the post to publish later.

You can then head to your Facebook business page and the post will appear with a CTA button. Viola!

How to Make Your Videos Clickable in YouTube

YouTube allows you at add Video Annotations as a way to add some background info and commentary to your video. By using them, you can directly link to your campaign pages instead of burying your URLs in your video descriptions.

True, the ability to add clickable links to your videos has been available in YouTube for years. You can calls-to-action, additional information, contact details and more inside your YouTube video to direct viewers to your site or product pages.

The issue is that, although YouTube guidelines cover the topic extensively, it is scattered across their site so you will have trouble finding answers to specific questions.

Let’s break down how to add clickable links inside your YouTube video in an easy and succinct way.

There used to be many ways to add clickable links to a YouTube video but they are now limited to Cards.

Here’s how you can add a clickable link to your YouTube video using Cards/Endscreens:

  1. Head over to your Video Manager by clicking on your account icon. Click on ‘Creator Studio’ then ‘Video Manager’.
  2. Find the video you want to add a clickable link to then click Edit>Cards.
  3. Click ‘Add Card’.
  4. Click ‘Create’ (next to “Link”).
  5. Under the “Associated website” tab, choose your site’s URL from the ‘Select site’ dropdown menu.
  6. You can then add the card title, CTA and text. You can also upload an image, which we highly recommend.
  7. Click ‘Create card’.
  8. Preview changes before saving.
  9. Test the the link to make sure it’s working.

The upside of Youtube Cards, besides enabling you to add links to your YouTube video is that you can use Cards analytics to analyze your video performance.

Keep in mind that Cards can only be added after your video is uploaded and processed.

Here’s how to add a link to the end of your video using Endscreens:

You may find that you can’t add links via Cards/Endscreens using the above method. That’s because you aren’t allowed to add clickable links to your videos for a couple of reasons:

1. You haven’t linked to your own “Verified + Associated” site.

YouTube allows you to verify ownership of one site which you can link from your videos. They said:

In order to use externally-linking end cards in videos, creators are being asked to join the YouTube Partner program, so that we can evaluate the validity of the channel, as well as determine whether the channel is following our community guidelines and advertiser policies. This update is meant to curb abuse and does not affect current YouTube partners or existing end cards. Additionally channels do not have to actually monetize any videos as part of this requirement.

So you need to join the YouTube Partner Program once you meet the following requirements:

  • Your channel has 4,000 watch hours or more, in the past 12 months and 1,000 subscribers.
  • If you’re in any of these countries.

Once you apply to join the program, you’ll need to wait for YouTube to process your application. Once approved, you will receive an email. You can also check the status of your application by going to Creator Studio>Channel>Monetization.

2. You haven’t associated your website via Google Search Console

Once you’re approved for the YouTube Partner Program, you need to associate your website with your YouTube channel.

You can do so by going to Creator Studio>Channel>Advanced and then add your “Associated website”. The status will show as pending but you’ll be able to “Request approval”.

That will direct you to Google’s Search Console where you will sign in with the same Google account information that you use for your YouTube channel.

If your site is added to Google Search Console, then you’ll receive an email to confirm verification.

Note: In addition to your own verified site, you can link to approved merchandise and fundraising sites like Etsy and Kickstarter. You can find the list of approved sites here.

How to Make Your Videos Clickable in Instagram

We’re sure you’ve seen Instagram stories that have a “See More” link at the bottom of the story. You may be wondering how you can add links to your own stories and direct your viewers to your site or campaigns.

Here’s how.

Before we dive in, we have to let you know that adding links to stories is not yet available to everyone. You need to have at least 10,000 Instagram followers to use the feature.

OK, let’s dive into how you can create an Instagram Story with a clickable link. If you already know how to create a story, you can skip to step 3.

  1. “Add Story”

On the top left of your screen, you’ll find the camera icon. Click on it to start taking a photo or video that you can add to your story.

There are many options at the bottom of your screen that enable you to take different types of videos. Play around with them and choose the one that will convey your story in the most effective way.

You can also add a video directly from your camera roll. To add a video from your camera roll, you simply click on the camera icon; then click the icon on the bottom far left of your screen, or just swipe up.

  1. Add Filters, Stickers and Text to Your Story

Once you have added your video, you can click on the text, filter or sticker icons at the top of your screen to customize your story.

  1. Add a Link to Your Story

If linking is enabled for your Instagram account, you should see a link icon at the top of your screen (next to the text, filter and sticker icons).

Click on it and you will be directed to screen where you can type in your link.

You’ll have the chance to preview what your link will look like when people click on it.

Once your link is added, the link icon on your screen will have a white circle around it. Users will see a “See More” button at the bottom of their screen with they view your story. They can either click on the button or swipe up. They’ll then be taken to the specified URL.

Since the feature is still new, we recommend you tell your viewers to swipe up to view the link.

If you don’t have 10,000 Instagram followers, you can add a text link to your Instagram story or put the link in your bio.

Don’t Underestimate the Value of Adding Clickable Links to Your Videos

Link CTAs are important in the sense that they tell your viewers to take a specific action. They make the path to conversion much easier for your viewers and additionally, clicking a button to make a purchase or to learn more is much easier than telling someone to go to a different page to do what you want them to do. Also keep in mind that CTAs offer valuable insights to let you know how your campaign is doing.

So even though you can’t add link CTAs to your lumen5 and other native videos, major social media channels like Facebook, YouTube and Instagram provide you with features and tools to make your videos clickable.

Tell us, have you made any of your Lumen5 videos clickable in any of those channels?

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