Make someone else's YouTube playlist your O.

YouTube tricks: 15 secret tips and features for professionals

According to official statistics, YouTube has over 1 billion users worldwide. 1 billion hours of videos are viewed every day on the mother of all video platforms. One thing is certain: moving images are catching on, and the popularity of social media videos continues to grow. In Germany there are currently an estimated 6 million active users on YouTube. This social media network is definitely one of the relevant marketing channels for companies of all sizes and in all sectors.

But your success as a social media marketer largely depends on how well you know the channels in which you are represented. Social media videos are one of the most effective methods of targeting audiences on social media today. That's why you should dig deeper into your bag of tricks when it comes to video. Anyone who knows and masters the entire arsenal of available video tools is guaranteed not to wither as a social media wallflower.

In this post, we'll show you a number of YouTube hacks and explain how you can use these advanced features to wow your viewers.

Let's start!

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15 YouTube tricks, tips and hidden features

1. How to create links that jump to a specific point in a YouTube video

Have you ever sent a video that the recipient should only watch after a certain point? For example, when your boss is interviewed in a video clip or - even better - when the infamous Cobra Cat earned her nickname?

Instead of giving the viewer a time to “fast forward” to, you can easily create a link that automatically jumps to the desired point in your video.

bonus: Download this free guide and discover how you can increase engagement on social media with improved audience analysis, better customer engagement and the easy-to-use social media software from Hootsuite.

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There are two methods for doing this:

How to use the "Share" button:

  1. Go to the video and click share (below the video title).
  2. Tick ​​under the first of the tabs that now appear (also with share the box next to Start at and enter the desired start time.
  3. Even easier: pause the video where you want it to start - and YouTube will automatically fill in the field for you.
  4. Shortly after entering the Start time A small addition appears at the end of the video link, which marks your start time. In the example below, this is? t = 1m41s. Copy and share this link.

Picture: YouTube

How to copy the video url at a specific point in time:

  1. Pause the video where you want it to auto-play and right-click in the video.
  2. A pop-up box will now appear in which various options are listed.
  3. click on Copy the video url at this point.
  4. The video link with the allotted time will be copied to your clipboard so that you can share it from there.
  5. If you click on the link, you will immediately end up at the “great hour” of the Cobra Cat.

Picture: YouTube

2. How to see the written transcript for each video

YouTube automatically generates transcripts for every video created on its platform. For busy social media marketers, this feature can be useful in a variety of ways - for example, when you want to use quotes from an interview or have the script of a video in written form.

This is how it works:

  1. Go to the video and click below the video title More.
  2. In the selection list that now appears, click on Transcript.
  3. If “Transcript” does not appear, the video creator has hidden this option.
  4. The full transcript now appears below the video.
  5. Please note that many video makers do not edit their transcripts and therefore they may not be optimal.

Picture: Hootsuite on YouTube

3. Improve the SEO of your video by editing or uploading a transcript

Content developers and marketers know that visibility is the key to success. One of the most important ways to improve visibility is search engine optimization (SEO), which ensures that your content is ranked higher in search results.

If you want to optimize a YouTube video for search engines, you only need to insert a transcript in the description field for the video.

This is how it works:

Go to your video on YouTube and click the subtitle / CC icon below the play arrow icon (“CC” stands for “closed caption” - scene description). You will now be asked to set your language. Select the language in which the video is held. Then you can choose between four methods of adding subtitles or scene descriptions to your video by ...

  1. … Upload your transcript as a file. Google (the parent company of YouTube) breaks down in detail what types of files you can upload
  2. ... enter the transcript of your video in writing or copy it into it, whereby the subtitle timing is set automatically
  3. ... enter your subtitles or scene descriptions while watching the video
  4. ... hire a service provider to transcribe (or translate) your video. You can find out more about this in this YouTube guide.

4. How to share playlists and collaborate with other users

Adding playlists to your YouTube channel will make it easier for your viewers to find and share your videos. Sportswear retailer Lululemon uses playlists to sort its videos into multiple categories, including product type and region. This makes it easier for fans to quickly discover videos that are interesting for them.

Picture: Lululemon on YouTube

How to make a playlist:

  1. Click on that Video managerIcon above your banner on the main page of your channel.
  2. Now click on Playlists in the left sidebar and then on New playlist top right of the page.
  3. Give your playlist a title.
  4. Select the “Public” option.
  5. click on Create.
  6. And in no time you will have your first playlist created!

If you want to add a video to your playlist, you can do so in two ways - either while you are viewing the video in question, or on your playlist page.

How to add a video while watching:

  1. Click on that AddSymbol below the play arrow symbol.
  2. Select the playlist you want from the list that appears.

How to add a video on the playlist page:

  1. Go to the playlist you want to add a video to.
  2. At the top right of the page, click Add videos.
  3. You will now be asked to add a video in one of three ways: via video search, a URL, or one of your existing YouTube videos.
  4. Select the option you want, and then go back to Add videos.

Image: YouTube

A nice extra: you can also invite friends and other viewers to collaborate with you on playlists.

How to invite other users to collaborate on playlists:

  1. Go to your playlists page.
  2. Select the playlist you want to invite people to.
  3. Click on that Playlist settingsIcon (to the right of the preview image of your playlist).
  4. In the window that now appears, click on the tab collaboration.
  5. Activate the option Contributors can add videos to this playlist.
  6. Copy the link that this generates and mail it to the people you want to work with.
  7. Anyone who receives the link can add unlimited videos to your playlist or change the order in it.

Image: YouTube

5. How to save videos to watch later

During research or another activity, when you suddenly notice a great video? Wouldn't it be nice if you could just mark this video and watch it later instead of getting distracted from your work. And that is exactly what you can do, dear social media friends, thanks to Watch later-Function of YouTube do too!

With this feature you can watch videos - similar to Save video on Facebook - simply save spontaneously for later viewing.

Image: YouTube

How to add videos to Watch Later:

  1. Click on that AddIcon below the play arrow icon (just like adding a video to a playlist).
  2. Now select in the drop-down menu Watch later.
  3. To view your saved videos, go to your YouTube homepage (click the three horizontal lines, the so-called "burger", in the top left of the page) and select Watch laterOption.

Image: YouTube

6. How to achieve more interaction with info cards

Social media marketing is all about engagement. It's not enough for a fan to see your content - they should interact with it too.

Thanks to the YouTube info card function, your target group can now easily interact with your videos.

These YouTube info cards are essentially small pop-up boxes that you add to your videos to draw the viewer's attention to other areas of interest - such as other videos and channels, your website or even surveys. Incidentally, info cards work equally well in desktop and mobile format.

This is how it works:

  1. Click your channel icon and go to Creator Studio.
  2. Now click the option Video manager in the left sidebar of your YouTube homepage.
  3. Go to the video you want to add an info card to and click next to it To edit.
  4. Select the option in the tab bar at the top Info cards.
  5. click on Add info card, and then choose the card type you want from a drop-down list.
  6. Once you've created your info card, you can place it wherever you want in the video.

Image: YouTube

7. How to add credits to promote your other videos

The longer you keep your viewers interested, the greater the chance of reaching them with your campaign. On YouTube, credits are very suitable for this purpose. Don't you know what that means?

End credits are images that appear during the last 5 to 20 seconds of a YouTube video. They are used to promote other videos or content. You have probably already seen it with your favorite musicians who want to interest you in their other songs - like at the end of the LP video “Tightrope”.

Picture: LP on YouTube


  1. Control your Video manager at.
  2. Click next to the video that you want to add credits to To edit.
  3. Click on in the selection menu Credits.
  4. Now you can try out what you want your credits to look like by either:
  • a Add element: Select the item you want to add (there are four options) and then click Create element,
  • copy from a video: To do this, simply copy the credits of one of your other videos and import them into your new video,
  • a Use YouTube template: Google provides a number of predefined formats that make it easier for you to create your credits.

8. How to create a custom YouTube URL

You've worked hard to deliver a seamless user experience to your fans across all of your social media channels - you should include YouTube on that too. With a custom URL, you ensure that your channel there is memorable and easy to remember. The URL can contain the name of your company, a campaign, or a product. At Hootsuite, we opted for the simple version

However, a custom URL is not an option for all channels. To qualify for this, your channel needs to be

  • have more than 100 subscribers
  • exist for at least 30 days
  • have an uploaded photo as the channel icon
  • have uploaded channel images

You can learn more about the eligibility requirements for a YouTube URL on the platform's help page.

If your channel meets the above conditions, a corresponding message will be displayed in your advanced account settings.

Important NOTE: Make sure you are 100 percent satisfied with your custom URL before you save it. Once created, there is nothing you can do about it.


  1. On your YouTube page, click the icon in the top right corner Settings and then under your account name Extended.
  2. Now select the link next to You are allowed to use a custom url (provided your channel meets all of the requirements).
  3. Now the box appears Select custom urlwhere you can see the custom urls that google approved for you.
  4. click on Change url and agree to the googleCustom URL Terms of Use to.
  5. Make sure you are absolutely satisfied with the URL you choose (because you won't be able to change it afterwards) and click confirm selection.

You have now created a custom URL that you can use to easily reach your target audience.

9. How to add royalty-free sound effects and music to your video

You can find loads of high-quality sounds and pieces of music in YouTube's audio library. A creative person who wants to give his videos more flair should definitely use this great source - especially since all files there are license-free!


  1. To select songs or sounds from YouTube's audio library, go to your Creator Studio.
  2. click on Create.
  3. Select in the drop-down menu Audio library.
  4. A screen now appears showing the wealth of YouTube's audio library. “Free Music” and “Sound Effects” are arranged according to tabs at the top left.
  5. When you like a track, just click the download arrow next to the track and save it to your computer for future use.

Picture: YouTube

10. How to schedule a video for later release

Your company has created a whole series of videos that you could upload right away - but you don't want to bombard your subscribers with so many updates in such a short amount of time.

If you manage your YouTube channel with Hootsuite, you can easily upload videos and save them for later publication.

You can find out how this works in our instruction video:

Learn how to get even more out of Hootsuite with the free social media training the Hootsuite Academy.

11. How to create an original photo slideshow on YouTube

YouTube content doesn't always have to be real videos. With the slide show function, photos can be put together quickly and easily to create an appealing presentation.


  1. Click on that UploadIcon (the arrow pointing upwards) in the top right of your YouTube page.
  2. A screen will appear where you can upload videos.
  3. Click under the heading Slide show on Create.
  4. Now you can either upload the photos you want from your computer or select them from an existing Google+ photo album.
  5. When you've uploaded all of your pictures, click on the bottom left Choose.
  6. Drag and drop the images in the order you want and then click Further.
  7. You will be directed to a preview of your slideshow using the YouTube default settings - all of which are easy to customize.
  8. Now add a few sound elements to really spice up your slideshow. To do this, select under Audio select an audio file from the audio library.
  9. Would you rather show a silent slide show? To leave out the music, just choose No audio.
  10. Once you are happy with everything, click Upload and wait for YouTube to process your slideshow.

You can find out more about YouTube slideshows on this Google help page.

Image: YouTube

12thHere's how to make a live stream straight from YouTube

Do you have a webinar or presentation that you would like to stream live? Then look forward to it: you can also do this directly from YouTube.

Big brands like the education company Mindvalley Academy have been using YouTube for a long time to stream their flagship events, making it easy to interact live with their global audiences.

Picture: Mindvalley Academy on YouTube

This is how it works:

First, YouTube wants to know if your channel is verified and you haven't had any livestream restrictions in the past 90 days.

Once you've verified that, there are two options for setting up your livestream: "Stream Now" and "Events". Let's go: Click the "Upload" icon on your page, and then click below Live streaming on Start now.

Image: YouTube

From there you will be in the Live streaming-Area of ​​your Creator Studio continued.

How to use Stream Now:

The “stream now” option is automatically preset on YouTube, which makes it much easier to use the live streaming options.

To start “Stream Now” you must first download and set up an encoder. Google will provide you with more detailed information on the set-up and use of the encoder.

Image: YouTube

How to Use YouTube "Events":

With the "Events" option you have more control over your live stream than with "Stream Now". You can set your privacy settings, enter start and end times, activate reserve streams and create multiple live streams that take place simultaneously.

To get started, click the EventsOption in your Creator Studio and enter below General information the required information.

More information about the setup of event livestreams can be found on this Google help page.

13. How to upload a 360 ° video to YouTube

YouTube's 360 ° videos have been available since 2015 and are extremely popular. The feature is popular with renowned brands as well as celebrities who want to produce breathtaking videos - for example the really dizzying production by Yves Saint Laurent.

But you don't have to be a world-famous brand to share your 360 ° content. With the right equipment and some technical know-how, you too can inspire your target groups with an immersive video experience.

To get started, you need a camera with 360-degree capabilities. Currently, Google is compatible with three models:

  1. Ricoh Theta
  2. Kodak SP360
  3. IC Real Tech Allie

For technical details on setting up and publishing 360 ° videos, see this Google help page.

14. How to watch ad-free videos with YouTube Red - even offline

Tired of having commercial clips constantly disrupting your YouTube experience? Then ban them from your life once and for all - with the YouTube Red subscription service.

Similar to Google Play or Spotify, this service, which is only available in some countries, provides you with an ad-free video and audio experience for little money (currently only 9.99 US dollars per month). Even better: you can also save the videos and view them offline. Boring “in-flight entertainment” like on an airplane is a thing of the past.

15. How to access a "safe" version of YouTube with YouTube Kids

Worried about what videos your dear little ones watch when you're not around?

You can easily control what your kids are watching with YouTube Kids. Google has equipped this version for minors - in contrast to the adult YouTube - with filters that sort out objectionable content. And YouTube Kids is also free!

If you want to protect your offspring, download the app (available for Android and iOS) onto their smartphone, tablet or computer. You can then define the YouTube experience for your child even more precisely by setting, for example, how long they can watch continuously and whether they can search for content unhindered.

So that's it for today.

We hope that you can successfully enrich your brand's YouTube experience with these 15 hacks and tricks. To learn how to profile your YouTube channel, check out our blog post 11 Smart Ways to Promote Your YouTube Channel.

Manage your YouTube presence the easy way with Hootsuite. Schedule and post videos, interact with your followers, moderate comments, and discover other YouTube content with keyword search streams - all on a single dashboard.

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By Jylian Russell

An experienced SaaS content writer, social media and marketing expert based in Vancouver and working remotely with teams across the UK, Asia and the US.