YouTube has started unveiling its new channel layout via select partner channels. The new design will roll out to everybody later this year.
As you can imagine, as with any time YouTube changes anything, people are PISSED OFF.
Iâ€™m not one of them. I think the new design is great. It fits in with the new design direction that is being implemented across all of Googleâ€™s different properties and more importantly it gives tremendous insight into YouTubeâ€™s strategy for 2013 and beyond.
So… instead of crying and leaving a blog comment about how much the new design blows, suck it up and see how you can take advantage of these changes and grow your brand.
I donâ€™t have currently have access to the new layout on any of my channels but rumor has it I will be getting an invite code this week. Right now the new channel is only visible on the mega channels like iJustine, Geek and Sundry, EpicMealtime and our pals at Sorted (who just cracked 200,000 subscribers). Hereâ€™s a video of the Sorted guys walking you through the new Channel features.
Here are what I see as the major things to pay attention to:
Custom Trailer for non-subscribers. Now is the time to start thinking about a teaser video that quickly conveys what your channel is about. This will be shown only to non-subscribers. This is a great feature and is a little hint that 2013 is going to be all about building channel subscribers.
One Header Graphic For All Devices. I always thought the process of setting up headers and making clickable image maps was a pain in the ass. Now you can make one graphic and it will follow your channel across all devices. Some channels are already kicking ass with this, but itâ€™s going to take a little experimentation to figure out a good layout for all devices. You can find a template and guidelines for creating your new channel art here. It looks a little crazy and time-consuming so itâ€™s worth checking into this before your channel changes over to the new look.
Shelves. Now, in addition to playlists, we have something called Shelves. This is what you see below the main video area. This is something Iâ€™ve been eagerly anticipating because it lets us organize content better. Last year we split our Recipe Q&A into a separate channel because I didnâ€™t like the way it displayed on the main page, I wanted that to be focused on recipes. Now I can move the Q&A back to the main channel and display it in one of the shelves. Shelves is also great for channels that have different types of shows.
More Subscription Guide Integration. Iâ€™m telling you, I have a VERY strong feeling that 2013 is all about subscribers and channels as opposed to individual videos. Check out how YouTube is recommending channels you might like as opposed to videos. It will be interesting to see how this plays out. But on the left are channels you already subscribe to and on the right are ones that are being recommended.
I will write more about this the minute I get access to the new features, but right now I’m pretty excited.
What do YOU think about the new channel layout? How are you planning on taking advantages of the new features? Let me know in the comments below.