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YouTube’s Latest Updates & What They Mean for Creators

YouTube, a powerhouse for creators and brands alike, recently announced significant updates that are bound to impact influencer marketing strategies and content dynamics.

From revising linking policies to unveiling unique features inspired by popular platforms, YouTube is shaking things up to keep creators and audiences engaged on the platform. Below, we outline YouTube’s new linking policies and feature updates, plus how creators can capitalize on these changes to ensure their content thrives.

Updates to YouTube’s Linking Policies

As of August 10, the platform removed links that appeared on the banner at the top of a YouTube channel’s home. And come August 31, YouTube Shorts will start discontinuing clickable links in descriptions, comments, and links in the vertical live feed. YouTube says these changes are “preventative measures to make it harder for scammers and spammers to mislead or scam users via links.”

YouTube knows that linking is still vital for product recommendations and information sharing, and is adding the option to showcase links prominently on their channel page. This update rolled out on August 23rd and allows creators to add up to 14 links. The links will live in the profile section near the subscribe button, where the audience will see the first link prominently and the rest upon clicking it. For MagicLinks Creators, this new option on the channel page is a great place to plug your ObsessedWith.It links. 

Lastly, by the end of September, YouTube will roll out a feature that lets creators easily direct their viewers from a YouTube Short to other videos on the platform. Of course, it’s a move to help keep audiences on the platform. But, it’s also good news for creators as it can help their longer videos get more views and attention through Shorts. And for viewers, it means they can quickly find and watch more videos they like.

New YouTube Shorts Features 

With stiff competition from TikTok and Instagram Reels, YouTube also announced new features that will make it easier to make and watch Shorts. And while a lot of these additions already exist on TikTok, some of the latest YouTube updates are unique to Shorts!

Collab: YouTube’s take on TikTok’s Duet feature allows users to react to a video in a split-screen format next to the original video as it’s playing.

Live vertical videos: Creators can livestream in a vertical video format for their followers to join. YouTube’s version will allow fans to send their favorite creators funds while watching the live stream with a few taps.

New effects and stickers: This includes a Q&A feature similar to the ones found on TikTok and Instagram, which allows creators to ask their audience questions on their videos and see the responses populate in the comments. Creators can also respond to comments w/another Short.

Saving Shorts to Playlists: This one is unique to YouTube. YouTube has always had this option for horizontal videos, and now users can also save their favorite short-form videos to specific playlists they can revisit later.

Recomposition Tool: This tool gives creators the power to transform their horizontal videos into Shorts easily. Once a creator chooses a video to remix, they can adjust the layout, zoom, and crop of the video segment.

The Good News for YouTube Creators

While the news of YouTube’s linking policies may have caused some initial frustration, this round of YouTube updates is a net positive for creators. With plenty of opportunities to link, creators need to educate their audiences on where to go for link information. 

“As a video-first creator platform, ensuring our YouTube Creators are set up for success is of the utmost importance to us here at MagicLinks,” said MagicLinks CEO Brian Nickerson. “As YouTube paves the way with new features, we are continuously working to help our creator community quickly adapt and strengthen their content – which is a win for the platform and for brands too.”

YouTube’s goal aligns with that of creators: they want to keep viewers on the platform, watching and engaging with content. With the new Shorts updates, the platform is empowering creators to diversify and innovate their content. In adapting quickly to these changes, creators can continue crafting captivating videos and highlighting their value to brands!

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