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Using YouTube Annotations

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Please Consider Supporting Us on Patreon! Steve Dotto here. I’m glad you’re spending time with me today. Let’s continue our journey to 100,000 subscribers and spend a little bit of time right now talking about annotations. Now annotations are one of the most powerful tools that you can use for your videos because they allow us to create a measure of interactivity with our videos and they also allow us to take our videos which are kind of now locked documents and update them if some information changes down the way a little ways. How do you do that? Let me just take you into my video. Let’s just edit this video that I have right now. So I’ve uploaded this video. By the time you see this video, this video that we’re editing right now will have been posted. This is the next one that’s in my list to post which is talking about Google Cloud Print. Here’s the video up and I haven’t loaded it up with a custom thumbnail yet but I will do that very shortly. I want to show you right now the Annotations area. When we click on Annotations, the video will start to play for us right away so I’ll have to pause that so it doesn’t blast us. There we go. The video will start to play and we have a little timeline here of the video and a very simple set of controls. We have Add Annotation or Edit Existing Annotation. Since I don’t have any existing annotations in this particular video, we can’t obviously edit any of the ones that are existing. Now what I do in my videos is I want to create a couple of opportunities for people to subscribe to this channel. I always put 30 seconds in a Subscribe button and I need to now make that interactive so that people can click in the video and actually subscribe to the channel. Let’s just walk through that. All I’m going to do is I’m going to scroll over this [scrub phonetic 00:01:42] ahead here and I can actually just do it by typing since I know where they are. I’m going to scroll ahead to about the 30-second mark and we see at 30 seconds I should see that Subscribe. There it is right there. It actually comes in right at 30 seconds. It should actually. I’m just going to scroll back a bit, 28, 29, there it is. So there it is just starting to fade in. Now that’s embedded right in the video. This isn’t anything that I’m doing here in the Annotations area. That graphic is part of the video. What I’m going to do now is I’m going to add an annotation which is basically in this case, I’m going to add a button for the top of it that is another layer that people can click on. There are a variety of different types of annotations that we could do. Maybe before I show you that, I should show you these. These are the types of annotations that you can do. You can do a speech bubble which I right-click on it, it brings up one of these little bubbles and you see it’s got that little kind of tail that allows you to kind of create a thought or a speech bubble. Now we can type into that a particular annotation. They don’t give us a lot of font control. If we make it Impact, it kind of makes everything a little bit bolder. We can make it relatively large. We can color the background of the annotation itself and of course red is always a very powerful color. We can do a few things like that. We can set up a beginning point and an endpoint. That’s not going to look very good unless we make it white. Is that better white? Okay. So there’s that annotation as a bubble. Now here is the key to all of the annotations. If you just need to update information, say the prices changed on this particular product—I’ll show you an example of that in a moment—if you need to do that, you can just create this as a graphic and then you can just pin it down here in the timeline. We can choose how long it’s going to be, when it appears. That’s the basic control we have over it. When we start adding links to it, that’s when it starts to get really interesting and exciting. We create these sorts of links. We can create a link to a video, to a playlist, to a channel, to a Google Pro Plus profile page. We can create a subscribe button. We can add fund-raising projects and associated websites which I find very exciting. As you climb in the status within YouTube’s partnership programs, you will reach a point where they will invite you to associate your website, which means all of these previous links just link to something within the Google universe; associate websites allow us to link outside of the Google universe and link to our own website. Now you can’t add multiple websites. It has to be relevant to the content. I have it set up so that so that I could actually link it back to the DottoTech site and any page within the DottoTech site I can link to. That is a really exciting addition. The Merchandising one, I actually haven’t ever played with. Let’s click on it, learn more and see what they have to say because I don’t know what Merchant Annotations are, “provide a way for promote their licensed merchandise directly in their videos.” Here’s what you need to verify your account. So there are a few things that you can do for licensed merchandise, which is interesting. I’ll probably take a look at it. I need to educate myself a little bit more on that. I don’t have any licensed merchandise yet so it’s not that important yet, but maybe someday it will be. Now let’s go back and let’s look at some of the other forms. Also, once you’ve done that, it’s just going to appear like that. Let’s go back and let’s delete this one because we don’t really want this one. Let’s get it back to the beginning of the video, Subscribe button coming in, adding annotations so a speech bubble. Note is very similar. It’s just a note. A title will create a nice, big, broad title which you, if we type in a title here, will be bigger text and it will look like a title. A lot of people use this for the titling of the videos. I do all of that sort of graphic work in the video editor. If you’re uploading a video directly from your camera phone or something like that, you might want to go in here and add titling and stuff using the annotations. It’s a great way to do that. You’ve got a few more options when dealing with title as opposed to the speech bubble or the note. The one that I’m going to use actually—well, let’s just delete this one again—and the one that I’m going to use is the one called Spotlights. I’m not sure if this is the absolute perfect one to do it but I think it is the correct one. What it does is it just kind of creates a transparent button that I can put, that I can place right over the top of what it is that I want to make clickable and then all I do is I position that there and then I create a link. Now I create the link to my Subscribe button. Now I’ve actually created a keyboard shortcut called #ytsub so that I could always remember the URL of my subscribe button. If not, you can work your way through the Menu system. See, it recognizes right away that it’s a Subscribe. You tell it to open a link in a new window because the last thing you want to do is have people click on this and stop watching this video just to subscribe to your site. This will allow it to open in a new window and then you determine how long it’s up. It comes in at 30 seconds. I’m going to spring this button in at 30 seconds and I want it to go out at the one-minute mark, 1:00, because I make then all about the same length. If I scrub my play head to the end of that, I should see that the Subscribe should end just there at the end of the minute. So it’s longer. That one I made it a little bit longer so I’m just going to drag that out there. See how I’ve done that? I just dragged the play out. Now I’ve got the button up for the whole time. When I publish this video and I can save it right now so that it’s saved. When I publish it, ultimately, there will be that button so anybody who clicks on that button will be able to subscribe to my video. I don’t think I added one in the middle of this. Let me just check to make sure. Sometimes if it’s a longer video—and this isn’t a very long video, this is only five minutes actually. By YouTube standards, this is probably a little bit of a long video. By Dotto standards, it’s not particularly long. So let’s go to the end of the video and let’s do one more subscribe. I’ll just bang through it in real time like I would so you could see how long it takes me to actually do this. There it is right there. There it starts. I add Annotation Spotlight. I position it over the top of where I want to be. I just bring these things down. I don’t know if it makes any difference to bring them down. I always just do. Add a link. The link is #ytsub. There we go. That is set. I stretch it out to the end of the video and then I come back a bit because I’ve got a little graphic bumper in the very back that I don’t really want the button up for. I make sure that this ends before that graphic bumper goes. It can go just a little bit shorter now. There we go. There’s the beginning of the graphic bumper. I save it, I publish it and now I have those two Subscribe buttons inserted in that video and ready to roll. It’s that easy to do. But before we go on, I want to show you another way that you can end up using Annotations and how they end up very valuable. I’m going to go back to my list of videos. I published a video about a week ago, my time right now. When you watch this video, it could have been at any time. But it’s this one right here, Google Drive – 6 Awesome Features, six features that make it awesome. I day after I posted the video, I published and made it public, Google changed the pricing on the product. And so the video, right in the middle of the video, I talk about the pricing. So what I did is I go in and I edit it right away. As soon as I heard that, I go in and I head into my annotations for this one. Let me just pause it so that it won’t make a bunch of noise. There it is. If we take a look, right here is where our little “Literally One Day After I Posted This Video, Google Changed the Price.” So I put in this and in this case here I used a speech bubble. Now I scrolled ahead by looking at it visually. If you’ve got a really long video with lots of annotations, you can see all the different annotations listed out here in this pop down menu of your annotations. Now most of them don’t have any text in them. That’s because they’re those transparent buttons that I was talking about. But here’s the one that actually has text attached. So I actually went in, dropped this text into this video so that now the video has a little longer shelf life. It’s not going to be—when people watch it, they aren’t getting misinformation. So annotations do two things. It probably does more than two things but we can think right now of two things that annotations do. First of all, they allow us to create us some interactivity and engagement with our audience, asking them to do something, to watch another video, to subscribe to our channel, to buy merchandise, to click back to a reference site on our website where we might be engaging them in another process. So it allows us to create that level of engagement. Secondly it allows us to take a video that is complete and modify the content and bring it up to date. It allows us to title it. It allows us to add explanations. It allows us to add humor and in this case here, it allows us to update the information to extend the shelf life of that particular video. I hope that you found this video to be useful. I’m on this journey to try and grow our channel to 100,000 subscribers and each of these videos I’m going to talk about one of the different things that I do and things that I modify and things that I’m learning about marketing and publishing in YouTube and becoming a proficient YouTube publisher. I hope that you learned a lot from it today. If you have, please comment down below. You’ve got to do two things. First of all, you’ve got to subscribe to our channel. I certainly appreciate that. Let your friends know to subscribe. While I’m at it, it wouldn’t hurt you to share a little bit. So click down beneath the video on the Sharing icons. Maybe share this on YouTube and let people now or share it on Facebook and let people know what an awesome series this is if you happen to run in circles where people are interested in YouTube publishing. Finally, I’ve got to thank you very much for spending the time with me today. There’ll be another video out very shortly on this topic. Please comment below. I reply to all the comments. Give me suggestions of things that you want to learn about and enjoy this journey to 100,000 subscribers.


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