If you’re not familiar with YouTube playlists, it’s time to get on the internet’s most entertaining bandwagon. Why? If you’re interested in something, there’s a YouTube playlist for it.
Want to listen to the best new house music of 2019? There’s a playlist for that. Want to watch every Game of Thrones scene featuring Daenerys Targaryen? There’s a playlist for that. Want to maximise your video SEO on YouTube? You guessed it – there’s a playlist for that.
In the information age, YouTube has put everything from trending tunes to industry-leading thought leaders right at your fingertips. But as a marketer and brand builder, did you know you can use YouTube playlists as a customer engagement tool? In this blog, we’re going to explain how you can create, edit, and maximise YouTube playlists to grow your brand and enhance your video marketing strategy.
What is a YouTube playlist?
A YouTube playlist is a collection of videos that play in order, one after another, automatically. Think of it as a music playlist you might create on Spotify or Apple Music, but for videos. When one video finishes up, the next one in the queue comes on screen without the user taking action. And just like music playlists, you can shuffle YouTube playlists to keep things fresh.
YouTube playlists come in all shapes and sizes. For example, if you wanted to waste some time today, you could search for “best Vine playlists” and find gems like these to add a laugh to your midday break.
After you’ve finished all 122 Vines in that playlist, you could watch a playlist on the internet’s most popular animal: cats.
When you’re ready to get back to work, you could watch our video marketing educational playlist that covers topics like how to generate sales using video, and how to use video on social media.
If that starts to get too serious, you could check out our playlist on useless facts – did you know swearing after you get hurt is scientifically proven to reduce pain?
As you can see, there are endless ways to use YouTube playlists as a consumer – but the possibilities for brands and marketers are also endless. Before we dive into how to make a playlist on YouTube, let’s talk about why you should create one first.
Why create a YouTube playlist?
In your personal life, YouTube playlists can be a fun tool for curating content to enhance your daily life. For example, you might want to create a playlist of your favourite music videos to have on in the background during a party. Or you could compile your favourite at-home workout videos into a playlist for a custom fitness routine you can do in your living room.
But when it comes to brands, YouTube playlists are the ultimate content curation tool for marketers. Instead of engaging your customers with just a single video, you could captivate them with multiple videos that come together to tell a bigger story. This also enhances the customer experience because they don’t have to search around for content – you’ve already created the perfect playlist that addresses their every need.
For example, you could create a YouTube playlist that walks your clients through your product features, and highlights a different feature in each video. You could create a playlist of video testimonials to send to potential new customers. Or you could create an FAQ playlist to share with new users that onboards them onto your product and addresses common customer service inquiries.
As you can see, the possibilities for YouTube playlists are endless, and so is their ability to enhance your customer experience. So without further ado, let’s get to it. Here’s how to create a playlist on YouTube in just a few simple steps.
How to create a playlist on YouTube
The first step to making a playlist on YouTube is simple – it’s deciding where you want to host the playlist. YouTube playlists are automatically hosted in the channel you make them in, so you want to be sure you’re logged into the right channel before you get started.
It’s possible you have access to multiple channels. YouTube automatically creates a personal channel associated with your account, but you could also have access to a business or brand channel that you manage. To navigate to the appropriate channel, select your avatar in the top right corner of the screen, and when the dropdown appears, select “Switch account” and then select the channel you want to add a playlist to.
Next, select your avatar once again – which should now show the image of the channel you want to add a playlist to – and select “My Channel” from the dropdown.
Doing this will take you to your YouTube channel – basically the central hub where your brand stores and manages all of your YouTube content. Select the “Customise Channel” button to access YouTube’s video manager and start creating your playlist.
From this screen, you’ll be able to edit your entire YouTube channel, including your about information, videos, channels you follow, and more. To create a playlist, you should select “Playlists” on the menu in the middle of the screen.
From there, you’ll see all your existing playlists, and most importantly, a button labeled “New playlist.” Click that button to start the playlist creation process.
Upon clicking “New playlist,” YouTube will ask you to title your playlist. Enter your playlist title, and click “Create.” You can always edit this later if you change your mind.
Voila, you’ve created your Youtube playlist! But we’re not quite done yet. Next you need to add videos to your playlist. To get started, click the “Edit” button.
This will drop you into your playlist editor where you’ll manage your playlist, add videos, and customise your playlist’s functionalities. First, let’s add a few videos. Select the “Add videos” button to get started.
YouTube has a robust set of video-adding features, and allows you to add videos to your playlist three different ways. First, you can use the video search feature to browse YouTube’s library of content by typing in the search bar. Then select the video you want to add and click “Add videos.”
If you tab over to the “URL” feature, you can copy and paste a video’s URL in the search field to add a video that’s hosted on YouTube or another hosting site.
Finally, you can use YouTube’s third video-adding feature, which allows you to search through your own existing video library to select videos. Pro tip: select multiple videos at once by holding down shift as you click on the video links, like we’ve done in the screenshot below. This can be a big time saver if you’re adding dozens of videos to a playlist.
After you select “Add videos,” YouTube will take you back to your playlist editor, where you’ll see all the videos you added to your playlist.
But creating a playlist isn’t enough – now you want to share it with the world! Click on the “Share” button to copy your playlist URL, email the playlist to someone, or embed the playlist on your website.
How to edit a playlist on YouTube
Now that you’ve created your playlist, you may want to edit it from time to time. Luckily, YouTube makes that easy. First, navigate back into the playlist editor.
From this screen, you can make dozens of updates and changes to your playlist. For example, if you click the “Playlist settings” button, you can customise your playlist’s settings.
Under the “Basic” tab, you can make your playlist public (searchable and available for everyone to see), unlisted (totally unavailable to all users except you), and private (available only to users you select).
You can also select the order of your playlist from this screen. Your playlist will automatically play in the order you added the videos, but you can change the order to be more dynamic. For example, you could feature your newest or most popular videos at the top to serve up your best content first and earn engagement early in the viewing experience.
Finally, YouTube comes with a unique “Auto add” feature. If you wanted to create a comprehensive playlist on a single topic and have videos automatically add to your playlist, type in the phrase you want to associate with your playlist and YouTube will automatically add new video content to your playlist for you.
Once back on the playlist editor page, you can reorder your videos by selecting the vertical ellipses on the left of the video, or using the dropdown on the right to move a video to the top or bottom. You can also use that dropdown to select your playlist thumbnail – an important decision since visuals are such an important part of a YouTube user selecting which playlist to watch.
Finally, if you want to delete a video from your playlist, simply select the “x” on the right of the video listing.
That’s it! If you can do those basic functions, you’ve just earned your black belt in YouTube playlist editing.
Now that you’ve made your first playlist, there are plenty of other things you can do to amplify your reach and maximise your impact on the second-most popular search engine in the world. First check out our guide on how to earn a YouTube verification to add legitimacy and credibility to your account. Then take a look at how to optimise your YouTube SEO to show up in more search results, reach your target audience, and ultimately meet your video marketing goals.