4 Editing Hacks to Make Any YouTube Video Go Viral

Unlock more views by learning how to edit YouTube videos in a way that keeps viewers engaged. We've got four simple hacks!

As a YouTube creator, you're not just a filmmaker — you're a storyteller. But what if your videos aren't getting the traction they deserve? What if your story isn't reaching the audience it should?

One way to fix this problem is by working on your visual hooks. It all starts with knowing how to edit your videos for maximum watch time and interest!

1. The Power of Visual Hooks

Imagine you're a viewer on YouTube. What is the first thing you see when you click on a video (minus the occasional advertisement)?

Whatever your answer is, it can be summed up with two words: visual hook.

A visual hook is an engaging element at the beginning of your video that grabs your viewer's attention and keeps them watching. It doesn't have to be flashy or extravagant. But it must be urgent (happens within the first few seconds) and interesting.

Today, YouTube shows a preview of your video when someone stops to scrolling to examine it. That's why you need great hooks. Visual hooks can combine funny scenes, superb acting, B-roll, and more, which work together to captivate the viewer.

In the modern age of YouTube, visual hooks will help you stand out as a small creator amongst passive scrollers. Plus, a good hook in a YouTube Short might prevent the viewer from scrolling away!

Read more: 18 Viral Video Hooks for YouTube Shorts [Proven Hacks]

2. Master the Art of Cutting

Cutting, in its simplest form, is transitioning from one shot to another. It's the invisible thread that weaves your story together, guiding your viewers from one scene to the next.

There are several types of cuts, and each one serves a unique purpose:

  • Standard cut: A basic cut that transitions one shot to another.
  • Cut-in: Brings the viewer closer to the action or subject, focusing their attention on a specific detail.
  • Cut-back: Shifts the viewer's attention away from the main action to provide context or additional information.

For example, imagine watching a surfing video. If the shot transitions from a man mounting a surf board to him paddling out to sea, that's a straight cut. If all you can see is his body, a cut-back would give you a zoomed-out view of the sky and ocean. But a cut-in, for instance, might show the water splashing around his board.

These cuts are not just transitions; they are storytelling tools. They are the subtle, yet powerful techniques that keep your viewers engaged, creating a rhythm and momentum in your video that keeps them watching from start to finish.

3. Use Motion and Different Camera Angles

Did you know that the average attention span is now officially less than that of a goldfish? While 8 seconds might seem like nothing on paper, it can feel like an eternity on a static screen.

Motion, in general, makes your video more engaging. Every so often, you should move the camera gently or show different angles.

You can do a low-angle shot for dramatic effect.

Or, try a high-angle shot to get the bird's-eye-view.

But when it comes to camera motion (or gentle camera shake), you have some wiggle room to play around with. You can either pan the camera every so often while filming, or simulate those movements in post-production. The latter is an advanced editing skill, but it's a good back-up plan if you're willing to learn!

4. Incorporate B-Roll Footage

B-roll is additional footage that you can use to break up the monotony of your main footage. It adds depth to your videos and keeps your audience engaged. Plus, B-roll works well in both educational and entertainment videos (but don't overdo it)!

In many YouTube videos, we see B-rolls that feel forced. This can actually create an unpleasant viewing experience, so make sure to use B-roll only when it’s a good opportunity to tell a better story and create a better video overall!

Read More: How to Film Engaging B-Roll for YouTube Videos

Bringing it All Together

Some of this advice is difficult to imagine just by reading about it, so here’s a video showing all the tips and tricks. And, we have to admit: The editing in this video is absolutely stunning!

Every great creator started from somewhere, and you're on your way to becoming one. So keep learning, keep improving, and most importantly, keep creating. Your journey is just beginning, and the world is ready to see what you have to offer.

To speed up the process, learn how to stand out as a small creator!