Blog

04.11.2021

These are the 5 newest YouTube features you didn’t know about!

What’s new on YouTube and how can you use it to your advantage?

WRITTEN BY


Merel van Eijk
Growth Consultant

merel@team5pm.com

YouTube recently added new features, including a YouTube Shorts Fund, more options for community posts, and more! These new features are essential to making your brand stand out. Why? YouTube is putting pressure on creators to take advantage of these new features. As an early adopter, you’ll not only achieve maximum reach with your content, but you’ll also be one step ahead of your competition.”

#1: YOUR ENGAGEMENT GOES THROUGH THE ROOF WITH IMPROVED COMMUNITY POSTS

While community posts were previously only available to channels with more than 1,000 subscribers, channels with more than 500 subscribers can now access this feature. Community posts will not only be possible for smaller channels. When creating a community post, YouTube now offers the option to add multiple (instead of just one) images or GIFs.

In addition, the performance of Community Posts is made more transparent. In YouTube analytics, you can now navigate to “Post”. Here you can see how many views, likes, and the number of likes per view a post has achieved. Have you created a community post in the form of a poll? Then you can also see the total number of votes (per ad). Using this data, you can identify popular topics and take them into account when creating new community posts.

What does this mean for you? In this new section of YouTube Analytics, you can answer various questions about your community posts. For example: Which poll got the most votes and can I reuse it in a different form in the future? Or which image got the most likes? What does my audience want to see? With this feature, you get more insight into your (potential) audience and can constantly develop your community posts.

#2 ANALYZE THE PERFORMANCE OF YOUR VIDEOS EASIER WITH “KEY MOMENTS

The new “Key Moments for Audience Engagement” feature makes it easier to analyze your content. As you can see in the example below, YouTube groups different videos that have an “above average intro” or a “below average intro”. Key moments for audience engagement” helps you understand what high-performing videos have in common.

In addition to the intro, you can also analyze highs, lows, and peaks.

  • Highlights: Places in the video that viewers watched longer than normal, on average.
  • Peaks: Moments that were viewed, re-watched, or shared by an above-average number of viewers.
  • Low points: Places where viewers dropped out or skipped.

What does this mean for you? This feature gives you insight into how viewers are experiencing your content. Do viewers tune out when there’s a long silence? Or do they watch it again when there’s a spectacular reveal? By comparing these moments, you can identify patterns in your viewers’ behavior. Once you’ve identified these patterns, you can use them when creating a new video, for example, by adding additional spectacular moments and removing long pauses from the video.

#3 YOUTUBE LOVES THUMBNAILS: MINI-DISPLAY IN SEARCH HISTORY

The importance of thumbnails is once again demonstrated by YouTube’s inclusion of a thumbnail in search results. A thumbnail with a search query gives a more complete picture of the potential result of the search.

By displaying thumbnails in the search history, it becomes even more important to make them appealing in thumbnail form. This means that the thumbnail should contain little text, high contrast, and a clear image.

What does this mean for you? Good preparation is important for a high-quality thumbnail. Take care of creating a thumbnail before you even start the video. Preferably, take a picture with a high-quality camera during the production of the video so that you don’t have to quickly cut a still image from the video when you upload it. These still images are often of poor quality and may contain shaky parts. A person may also simply not be smiling or have their eyes closed. So think about this while you’re shooting, and it’s best to think about what you want to show on the thumbnail beforehand.

#4 YOUTUBE SHORTS FUND COMES TO THE NETHERLANDS.

The YouTube Shorts Fund is a $100 million fund that rewards YouTube creators who publish creative and original short films. Channels that are not part of the YouTube Partner Program also have a chance at this reward. But what requirements does a channel have to meet?

  • You must have uploaded at least one eligible short film to your channel in the last 180 days.
  • Your channel must comply with YouTube’s community guidelines, copyright rules, and revenue generation policy.
  • Creators must reside in the Netherlands or one of the available countries.

YouTube is fully focused on shorts to get them off the ground as quickly as possible, so use this as a brand. YouTube is currently focusing heavily on shorts and hopes that the Creator Fund will convince people to upload their shorts to YouTube. Other benefits of shorts are that you can reach people who are not subscribed to your channel. Plus, you can still post short content from your marketing or content strategy on YouTube. While regular YouTube videos are preferably between 5 and 15 minutes long, a short film can’t be longer than 58 seconds.

What does this mean for you? There’s money to be made for you as a brand with shorts now. All the more reason to start making shorts NOW. YouTube rewards creative and original shorts with $100 to $10,000. Not sure where to start? For example, edit popular clips (found in the Key Moments for Audience Engagement feature) into a video up to 58 seconds long. Or reuse a vertical video that’s been deployed on another social media channel.

Time to make shorts! Not sure what to make? Read our blog on shorts for more explanations and examples from brands.

#5 CHAPTERS SHOWN IN MOBILE YOUTUBE SEARCH RESULTS

Adding chapters to a video is becoming increasingly important. YouTube now previews chapters in search results on mobile devices. By adding chapters to a video, the video takes up almost the entire screen of the potential viewer. This is also referred to as screen real estate.

Screen real estate: “The amount of space available on a screen for the output of an application. In general, effective use of screen space is one of the most difficult design challenges. This is due to the desire to have as much data and controls visible on the screen as possible while minimizing hidden features and scrolling.”

As you can see in the example below, some chapter titles are colored blue and others are colored black. The blue titles contain one or more keywords from the search query. This shows that the chapters also contribute to the viewer’s experience by immediately highlighting the correct chapters.

What does this mean for you? Always add chapters to how-to videos, videos longer than 8-10 minutes, and uploaded livestreams. Start with 00:00 and repeat the title or main topic of the video if necessary. Set the steps or subtopics and add them as chapters when the time comes. By adding these chapters, you not only increase findability and usability, but also increase screen real estate. This way you stand out to the viewer.

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