How to Embed Links in Acrobat Pro on YouTube

By Jeff Grundy

For just about any task you can imagine, a YouTube video exists that will show you how to accomplish it. Hence, many businesses use YouTube as a training tool to help employees master tasks related to software usage, accounting and other common office chores. Likewise, many businesses use Adobe Acrobat Pro to create training documents and other literature to train employees or promote goods and services. Whatever your reason for creating PDF files, inserting video links into these documents will make them more useful.

Launch Adobe Acrobat Pro on your computer. Open the PDF file into which you want to insert a text link to a YouTube video.

Minimize Adobe Acrobat Pro, then open your Web browser. Go to the YouTube website and load the page for the video that you want to link in your PDF file. Highlight the URL address of the YouTube video page and press “Ctrl-C” on your keyboard to copy the link to your system clipboard.

Maximize Adobe Acrobat Pro. Scroll to the point in your PDF document where you want to insert the YouTube video link. Press “Enter” to create a carriage return or line break if necessary.

Enter descriptive text for the video link. Type “Click here to watch the video” or something similar. Highlight the line of text you created.

Click the “chain-link” icon on the Acrobat Pro toolbar. A pop-up window opens, prompting you to enter the URL for the page that you want to open when the person viewing the document clicks the link. Press “Ctrl-V” to paste the URL address for the YouTube video page into the “URL” field of the pop-up window.

Click “OK” to close the pop-up window and return to the main PDF editor page. Click “File,” then click “Save” on the menu bar.

Open the new version of the PDF file in Adobe Acrobat Reader or another PDF viewer application. Click the newly added text link in the PDF file to open a new browser window or tab and view the YouTube video.


You can also create a link to a YouTube video using a screen shot or thumbnail image instead of plain text. To create a screen shot or thumbnail of the video, maximize it to view it in full-screen mode, then press the “PrtScr” or “Print Screen” key on your keyboard. Press “Ctrl-V” to paste the image into your PDF document and resize it to your liking. After you insert the image into your PDF document, click the “chain-link” icon on the toolbar and enter the URL for the YouTube video just as you would do when adding a plain text link.

If you want to create really lively and interactive PDF files, you can insert YouTube videos directly into your documents with a special widget. Visit the PDF Developer Junkie Blog, download the add-in and save it to your Acrobat installation folder. Detailed instructions for using the add-in can be found on the developer's website.