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How to Edit Videos For Youtube On A Macbook


I jumped on the YouTube bandwagon 6 months ago and it’s been a lot of fun.

However, one of the biggest things that stops people from trying to make YouTube videos is fear of editing.

I was like that when I first started doing YouTube videos. I thought it would take so much time and it’d be complicated. Eventually I figured out a way to quickly and easily edit videos.

So that’s what I’m going to talk about – how to edit videos the right way so that you don’t spend a lot of time and you can keep on making great YouTube videos.

Now this post is a pretty long one, so if you want, I’ve created a PDF version for you to keep on hand. Click here to grab it:

How to have the right foundation

Like a lot of things in marketing, you need to have a good foundation before you actually get to the dirty work of actually editing.

Make sure you have a good foundation before you start editing Youtube videos! Click To Tweet

So what’s a good foundation for a great YouTube video? There are three elements.

Foundation element 1: have a good topic

There is a bit of a debate on what exactly makes a good topic, but here are three characteristics of what I think is a good topic for a great YouTube video.

It’s based off Youtube search.

YouTube is a giant search engine; in order for your video to be seen, it has to be about stuff that people are searching for.

The easiest way to ensure that you have a good topic is to go to the YouTube search bar and search for keywords that you think people would be interested in.

What you’ll see is that the YouTube search bar will auto-complete with different types of searches. Each of these searches is a possible YouTube video title.

It’s been through the Google Keyword Planner

If you go to the Google Keyword Planner and type in your YouTube search query, it will give you a list of keywords based off how many searches per month and the competition for that search term.

You want to grab supplementary keywords that have two characteristics:

  1. High volume. You don’t want to pick a keyword that has very low search volume. So what’s a good search volume? I’d recommend at least 1000 searches.
  2. Medium or low competition. You don’t want to have a keyword with high competition because your video is just not going to be seen.

It’s in your topic of expertise

Your topic should be one that you are passionate about, know a lot about, and are comfortable/eager to teach to other people. If it doesn’t satisfy these three things, don’t make a YouTube video. Even if it has good search and keywords, if you aren’t passionate about the topic, your video will be bad right out the gate.

Don't make a Youtube video on something that you don't care about! Click To Tweet

Foundation element 2: have a great structure

A good structure is important for a YouTube video because it needs to not only capture the viewer but also encourage them to keep on watching to the end.

If you have a good structure, you'll get more Youtube views! Click To Tweet

So what’s a good structure for a YouTube video? In my opinion, a good structure has three elements.

Strong Introduction

When you start a YouTube video, introduce yourself because people might not know who you are. This is because they’re either discovering your video through search or through social media.

Make sure that your intro is not too long so that people don’t get bored and they go away. Preferably your intro should be no more than 30 seconds long. Maybe make it 15 seconds to be on the safe side.

Explanation of your topic

For the meat of the video, you want to have the video broken up into different parts. This does two things:

  • the video’s easy to follow
  • the video’s easy for you to shoot because you don’t have to shoot the whole video all at once. Instead, you can shoot part by part.

Call to action (CTA)

What’s a good call to action? A good call to action has two parts:

  1. It encourages people to engage with you. In other words, you want people to like/comment on the video or subscribe to your YouTube channel.
  2. It drives them away from YouTube. Your goal should be either your website or your lead magnet. This lets you start taking viewers and turning them into true fans.

Foundation element 3: have good footage

The third element of a right foundation is having good footage. Here are some tips for when you’re shooting your YouTube video.

Have good lighting

The way you have good lighting is always make sure when you’re recording your YouTube videos that you have the light in front of you. Otherwise your face is going to be in the shadows.

Have good audio

There are two ways to have good audio.

The first and probably the most practical one is to try and record your YouTube videos in a quiet environment without a lot of background noise.

The second way you can have good audio is to use an external mic. There are lots of different options ranging from:

  • Apple headsets
  • specialized microphones like the PosnerSnap
  • built-in microphones on your computer/webcam

Have short clips

I recommend 5 to 10 seconds per clip. This makes it easy for you to shoot and you don’t get paralyzed by fear of the camera.

Power tip: Name your clips by the order that you’re going to put them in. (Clip 1, Clip 2, etc.)

So now you have a good foundation, let’s talk about what you need in order to edit your videos on your Mac.

What you need for editing videos


There are lots of different software you can use to edit videos, but I recommend iMovie. It’s not only very easy and robust, but it’s also free!

Youtube bumper

A bumper gives your videos a professional look and it serves as a calling card letting people know they’re watching your video.

So how do you make a good bumper?

My recommendation is to use a collection of pictures and some background music. Take a peek at my Youtube videos to see how I do it.

Background music

Particularly if you’re doing a screencast or a bunch of short clips, background music helps elevate the mood and encourages people to keep watching.

Background music helps elevate the mood and encourages people to keep watching.Click To Tweet

To get background music, you want to use one of two sources. You can’t just grab random music online because then you could be violating copyright laws. There are two sources of music I recommend:

  1. YouTube. If you go into the back end of YouTube, you will see a section that says Music. This is music that they allow you to use in your YouTube videos.
  2. Bensound. This is a website where you can download all sorts of interesting music. All you need to do is attribute them and you’re good to go.

How to edit Youtube videos

Now you have the software and a great foundation, let’s get down to editing.

1) Line clips side by side

The first step is import your clips into iMovie and line up the clips side by side.

2) Get rid of gaps

The next step is to get rid of any gaps or awkward pauses in your clips. You want to have a smooth, continuous video all the way through.

3) Include screencasts/text

Screencasts and texts help you give people more information on a topic. They also enable you to really structure your video so people understand what you’re saying.

4) Increase the audio

If you are recording with a microphone, oftentimes what you’re recording is not loud enough for the video. Therefore, you may want to increase the volume.

I recommend increasing it to 300% or 400% so that your voice is clear and not difficult to hear.

Final words

So that’s how to edit YouTube videos. It does sound like a lot, but all you have to do is just get started. If you edit your first video, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a YouTube star.

How do you edit your Youtube videos? I’d love to hear in the comments. And if you haven’t already, be sure to grab a copy of this blog post to keep on hand:


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