How to Create a Professional Intro for your Brand or Youtube Channel FREE in Keynote (Easy Tutorial!)

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create your own custom video intro for your brand or youtube channel for free using keynote

Do you know what the largest search engine in the world is?

You might be thinking.. that’s an easy one! It’s Google, duh. And you’d be absolutely correct.

But do you know what the second largest search engine in the world is?

You might guess Bing. Yahoo, maybe? And this time, you’d be absolutely wrong.

In fact: the second largest search engine in the world has more unique monthly visitors than Yahoo, Bing, Aol, and combined!

Hint: it’s owned by Google.

You’ve probably got it now..

That’s right, it’s Youtube!


Yes, Youtube is the second largest search engine in the world, and that reveals something pretty important when it comes to establishing and growing an online business: video is the present and the future of online marketing. Even Mark Zuckerberg has embraced video as the way of the future – and since he owns two of the largest and most successful social media platforms in the world- we’d be wise to listen, right?

Basically- whether you’re a small blogger or a product-based business- if video isn’t a part of your content marketing strategy, then you’re missing out!

And listen – if the previous statement doesn’t sit so well with you- you’re not alone.

I’ve been working on this blog (aka my own online business) for awhile now, and when I first heard well-known entrepreneurs and marketers – whose advice I respect- talk about the importance of video content, my heart sunk.

I’ll be honest. I hate to be on camera. I don’t even like to be in front of a camera for a photograph, much less leave it rolling for an indefinite amount of time while I awkwardly stumble through some sort of verbal presentation. Oy, it’s a process- to be sure.

But as Ruth Soukup would say, “Do It Scared!”

So even though it still makes me cringe, I started a Youtube Channel.


When I first joined Youtube, I was treating it as something entirely separate from this blog. In fact, I put the blog on hiatus and came up with a totally different brand for my channel, determined to just do Youtube and see if I could make myself successful over there. I even convinced myself Youtube was so much easier than blogging.

*eye roll at myself SO HARD*

Then two months after beginning Youtube, a lightbulb went off in my head, and I realized my blog and my Youtube channel are not mutually exclusive.

This is also around the time I decided to rebrand my blog. The content I was creating for Youtube was along the same niche as my nearly-forgotten blog, but I was beginning to scramble for ideas and lose momentum.

Suddenly I longed to go back to writing. I knew I’d been wrong. At first I told myself- blogging is actually easier than Youtube. What were you thinking? I guess I was trying to make myself feel better about my failures, but I know the truth– they’re both hard!

The silver lining in all of it is that when I realized I needed to combine my blog and my Youtube channel, I had some great video content that could easily be translated into blog posts. 

So whether you’re just starting your Youtube Channel or you’ve been at it for awhile, today I’m bringing you a tutorial that I first posted on my Youtube Channel:  How to Create an Easy Youtube Channel Intro for FREE Using Keynote. It also happens to be my most popular video to date.

How to Create an Easy & Professional Youtube Channel Video Intro in Keynote

As passionate as I am about designing & branding on this blog, it was just as important to me to have a professional looking and well-branded Youtube Channel from day one. Enter the all-important Youtube channel intro.

When we solo-preneurs first start our blogs, businesses, or Youtube channels, there’s usually a TON of boot strapping involved.. aka we have zero design budget and have to use our existing resources to somehow market ourselves.

And that’s where this video intro tutorial comes in!

Are you ready to up your brand identity, give yourself more authority, and create a professional-level intro for your video content?

Luckily you don’t need fancy software to create a good channel intro. If you’re a Mac user (like me), you can D-I-Y one using Keynote! If you’re on a PC user (no hate), try Powerpoint.

And for a FREE alternative (because who are we kidding?? we’re broke! or need to invest our limited funds elsewhere): use Google Slides, available with your Gmail/Google Drive account.

Here’s what we’ll be creating:

 Let me show you how I did it!

If you prefer, you can watch the video tutorial- which has some bonus tips!-or you can keep scrolling for the step-by-step tutorial.

Step 1 – Open Keynote and Choose a New Document. Select Your Background

To get started, first open Keynote on your Apple device. Keynote is available for free with iMac, Macbook, or iPhone.

On Macbook this will bring up a Finder Window. Choose New Document on the bottom left.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 1a - Open A New Document in Keynote

Next, Choose Your Slide Background. I’m choosing the plain white style, but you can use any of them.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 1b - Choose Your Background

Step 2 – Insert Your Logo File or – Type Your Channel Name and Style the Text

Once your new document is open, you can either type out your Youtube brand/channel name or you can insert your logo if you have one.

Remember to include any taglines, and take some time to format the font, size, colors, etc. to make it pop! If you opted to insert your logo file, you can also format images with some cool effects (see Step 6).

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 2 - Type out your brand name or insert your logo and style the text

Step 3 – Animate Your Logo or Channel Name with “Build In” Effects

Now comes the fun part! We’re going to add animation. Click on Animate in the top right-hand corner of the Keynote toolbar, nestled between Format and Document.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 3a - Animate Your text with build in effect

Under Animate, there are three different ways we can animate our text or logo: Build In, Action, and Build Out.

  • Build In will “introduce” your text or logo. It will play an animation, and the object will remain on the screen.
  • Action will play after the Build In, and your object can do a secondary animation.
  • Build Out will animate your object, and then it will remove your object from the screen. Poof, be gone!

We’ll stick with Build In for now and get to Build Out in the Step 5.

Build In

First I selected MakerLex and chose Pop from the Build In menu. I adjusted the Duration to .75 seconds.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 3b - Animate Your text with build in effects

Second, I selected my Tagline and Chose Cube from the Build In menu. I want this to play simultaneously- and for the same amount of time-as the “MakerLex” animation, so I adjusted the time to .75 seconds again.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 3c - Animate Your tagline with a build-in effect

Step 4 – Change your Build Order

Build Order is where the magic happens. This is how we make our animations play when-and-how we want them to!

Click on Build Order at the bottom of the Animate Menu.

Right now I have two “objects” on my slide. One is my big “MakerLex” text, and the other is my tagline. In the Build Order pop-up menu, you can see that each of these objects is listed. “MakerLex” is #1, and my Tagline is #2. You can see this in Exhibit A.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 4a - Change the Build Order of Animations
Exhibit A

Right now if I press Preview the animations play one by one, MakerLex first, and then my tagline- but I want them to play at the same time. So I’m going to leave #1 as Start –> On Click.

For #2 (my tagline) I will change to Start –> With Build 1.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 4a - Make the tagline play with Build 1

Now #1 and #2 will play at the same time.

Step 5 – Add “Build Out” Effects

Now that we have our Logo and tagline animated with Build In, it’s time to move them off the screen and make way for our social media icons to appear.

I selected “MakerLex” again and chose a Blur effect- this time from the Build Out Menu. I chose the same Build Out effect for my tagline and made the duration the same for each: .75 seconds.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 5a - Add Build Out and change the Build Order

Now I need to change the Build Order for my Build Out Effects.

In the Build Order Pop-up Menu, select the third list item and set it to Start –> After Build 2.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 5b - Make item 3 start after Build 2

Then select the fourth list item and set it to Start –> With Build 3.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 5c - Make item 4 start with Build 3

Step 6 – Copy & Paste Social Media Icons from the Internet and add Your Social Media Handle

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 6a - Find social media icons on google images

Ah, we’re moving right along! Now let’s add some social media icons. I went to Google and searched for Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook icons that I liked. I right-clicked on the images in Google, chose “Copy Image” and then Pasted them into Keynote, like so..

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 6b - Find social media icons on google images and paste them into Keynote, drag the corner of the box to resize the icons

Yes, I pasted it right over my name on the current slide. I realize it looks a little messy (see Exhibit C) and could get confusing, so if it’s easier for you, paste the icons on a new slide. Part of the reason I did this was to make sure things were lining up exactly where I wanted them to appear.

Repeat this process until you have all the icons you want. You can click the individual icon and drag the corner of the box down to resize it. After I did that, I also added a text box with my Instagram handle right over-top my tagline.

Here’s what mine looked like after I added a Mirror Effect (find it in the Format Menu) to the icons:

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 6c - Add a mirror effect to your images
Exhibit C

Step 7 – Animate the Social Media Icons

Now select your icons and add another Build In Animation effect. You can click and hold Shift on your keyboard to select them all at once. I chose Dissolve for my social media icons and Typewriter for my Instagram handle. I made the duration .75 seconds for all.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 7 - Add a Build in Animation to Your Social Media Icons and handle

Step 8 – Change your Build Order for Social Media

And finally, let’s pull up the Build Order Menu one last time. You can see that each of my icons and my handle has been added to the Build Order List.

For Item 5, set it to Start –> After Build 4.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 8 - Change build order of Social Icons

Now set items 6,7, and 8 to Start –> With Build 5.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 8b - Change build order of Social Icons

Step 9 – Export as a Movie File

All that’s left to do is Preview your animation and figure out if you’re happy or if you want to keep playing around with it.

Take some time to explore the many animation effects and format effects available in Keynote. There’s a lot of power here, and you can create something longer or more complex than what I’ve demonstrated.

The sky’s the limit (or maybe your hard drive is the limit..)!

Once you’re done fooling around and happy with your final product, then head to File –> Export To –> Movie.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 9a - Export your slideshow as a movie

Make sure Playback is set to Self-Playing, and choose ALL Slides, or enter the values for the slides you want to include in the video. I only had one, but you might have two+ if you put your social media icons in another slide.

Choose Resolution 1080p.

Make a Free Youtube Video Intro in Keynote - Step 9b - Export all slides in your slideshow as a 1080p movie


All you need to do now is save this video somewhere you can easily navigate back to it. When you’re ready to use it, upload it into iMovie or your favorite video editor.

If you enjoyed this tutorial, let me know by subscribing to my Youtube Channel or pinning the image below to share with your friends!

create your own custom video intro for your brand or youtube channel for free using keynote

Comment your video link below if you used this tutorial to create an awesome branded intro. It’s always nice to see what other people’s creative mind comes up with.

Happy Making!

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