Create a YouTube channel trailer
1. Review your YouTube channel’s brand identity, including your channel’s objectives, target audience, tone, and unique characteristics.
Identify the goals of your YouTube channel and content. Review video content and copy to understand what tone your videos convey to the viewer. Some popular YouTube video tones include entertaining, inspirational, and educational. For example, online gift store Vat19’s YouTube channel shares video content that teaches and entertains their audience to have fun with different products. Amazon Web Services’ YouTube channel shares inspirational stories of how their customers are leveraging their technology to help others and maximum their business potential. Pinpoint what makes your brand and video content different from other YouTube channels and videos and why people would want to watch your content.
2. To ensure videos are reaching the right audience, visit Analytics > Audience in YouTube Studio and review your channel’s audience demographics.
3. Define the top 2-3 things a new viewer needs to know about your channel. This may include facts about your channel, or a general emotion you want the trailer to convey.
To set viewer expectations, consider the following things a new viewer might want to know: The purpose of your channel. Who your channel serves. What makes your channel and videos unique. How the viewer will feel after watching your videos. How often you post new videos and on which days. How they should engage with your channel and videos. Which video they should watch next.
4. Write a 1-minute script that provides a high level introduction to your channel and ends with a call to action to subscribe.
Incorporate high-priority talking points and align the script’s tone with your channel’s brand identity. The first 15 seconds of the video needs to capture the viewer’s attention, so prioritize engaging visual content and set viewer expectations early by sharing what types of content will be published on the channel. The video should end with reasons why the viewer should subscribe to your YouTube channel, and encourage them to hit the subscribe button and the bell icon to be notified when a new video is published.
5. Shoot new footage or find existing footage that matches your brand identity and shows viewers what to expect on your channel.
Aerie’s channel trailer video features a female influencer who shares the brand’s purpose. She ends the video with giving viewers a CTA to subscribe to the channel to hear from other women and see behind the scenes footage. Global IT provider Cisco uses b-roll footage, voice over, and text overlay to introduce viewers to their brand and its purpose in their channel trailer video.
6. Edit the video using a video editing software program such as Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, iMovie, or Lightworks.
Maximize the shorter video length by trimming down the raw footage. Remove awkward pauses and excessive filler words like um and ah. Arrange each clip to tell the story of your script and engage the viewer.
7. Add brand logo, colors, fonts, background music, and branded graphics to your video. In YouTube Studio, go to Create > Upload videos > Select Files to add closed captions and an end card.
With YouTube Studio you can add automatic subtitles and an end card to the video, but the text copy and font is not adjustable, so you’ll be limited to what you can say and how it appears.
8. Write a video title and channel description that appears with your trailer on the home tab.
The video title and description should align with user searches and include keywords about your brand and channel. The title can be up to 150 characters with spaces. With only 60 characters or less appearing in searches, consider keeping it shorter for full viewability. The video description can be up to 5,000 characters with spaces, with only the first few lines appearing before the viewer needs to click to read more. List the most important details about the video first, including why someone should watch the video and what they can expect. The description should also include a CTA to subscribe, and links to your website and social media accounts.
9. Publish the trailer and enable it as the channel trailer by navigating to Customization > ADD > Select Trailer Video.
Select your most popular or newest video as the featured video for returning subscribers.