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Archive for December, 2011

What Does the YouTube Redesign Mean for my Branded YouTube Channel?

By Greg Jones

Google has been on a tear recently, revamping, redesigning, and re-launching a number of widely known, loved, and used user interfaces on the web, namely, Google Reader, Gmail and now, YouTube. The former two had little impact on brands, but the latter may come with challenges to companies who have, or are in the process of establishing a branded presence on YouTube. As with anything, it will take some time and experimentation to get used to. Here is a guide to help ease the redesign of your branded YouTube channel. It is important to note that this appears to be an open beta redesign, so early adopters, this one’s for you!

If you don’t like it, don’t change it… yet

All good interface redesigns know that not everyone will be comfortable with the changes instantly. Therefore, if you don’t like the new interface, don’t upgrade your channel to the new UI. If you already upgraded your channel, YouTube currently allows you to switch back to the old design. If you have time and money invested in your old design, by all means, leave it the way it is for now. The transition period may come with plenty of bugs and tweaks, so if you are feint of funds, it may be wise to let others lead the way until you feel comfortable upgrading and redesigning.

Three tabs, four new channel layouts

Google’s redesign has come with a unified look and feel; the boxy grey/black interface redesign has now hit YouTube. The upside of this is less clutter, and a prominent play on connectivity with social, subscriptions, and suggestions in the newly implemented homepage left-hand navigation bar. But where this redesign seems to focus is on your channel page. Each channel now has three main tabs, the “Featured” tab, which contains what’s being showcased by your channel, the “Feed” tab, which has all channel activity and comments, and the “Videos” tab which cuts to the chase and chronologically displays all video uploads by the channel. More tabs may be added over time to increase the feature set of a channel, allowing YouTube’s functionality to scale brilliantly. Channels will default to the “Featured” tab when your channel loads, but the default can be changed through settings, depending on which tab is most important to your audience. Here are the four types of “featured” tab:

1. Creators layout for multiple playlists

The Creator layout is the first option for the featured tab. This layout is designed for artists, animators, videographers, and anyone seeking to create a video portfolio with one large featured video and a number of featured playlists, presumably related to different projects you have worked on. If you find your channel has multiple audiences who only want to watch a sub-set of the many videos you create, a Creator channel may be for you.

2. Blogger layout for frequent, timely updates

The blogger layout is the second option for the featured tab. This layout is designed for anyone who has a video channel dedicated to consistently blogging/vlogging on one particular subject of interest. With a reverse chronological list of videos, your audience should be visiting several times per week to watch the latest episode you have uploaded. Read This Post