Are you using Premiere Elements 11 Windows? For now I will assume that you are? Are you going through the following:
a. Highlighting your clip on the Timeline (Expert view).Then Going to Effects Tab/Transform/Crop at bottom of interface.
b. Drag from Crop thumbnail into Timeline clip to apply the Crop Effect
c. Then making sure that the Timeline clip is highlighted, clicking on Applied Effects, followed by opening the Crop Panel of the Applied Effects Palette.
d. Make your Crop adjustments top, left, right, bottom...checking or not putting a check mark next to Zoom
e. Hitting the Render button.
Your crop should be maintained after "e".
We will be watching for your confirmation of the steps that you have been following.
it may be a little hard to tell here, but the first image is the render (it is ok), the second image is the timeline (also ok), the bottom image is from the upload to Youtube and you can see that there is part of me hanging below the border. I do the steps exactly as you described and yes it is Elements 11 for Windows
You can see the video here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqWE6lphNvY to see better what I am talking about. It completely loses the effect that I am on the beach. I have tried clip and crop; zoomed and unzoomed; several times, several ways. Not sure what I am missing here. What I see on the timeline and in the render is not what makes it to youtube.
First let us explore the crop details just to be sure....
1. In Premiere Elements 11, you applied the Crop Effect to your image.
2. Do you then enter the Applied Effects Palette and its Crop Panel for the clip?
3. In the Crop Panel, what are you cropping from the image. What does the before crop image look like?
4. Are you using the sliders to crop where need be and then using the sliders to fill existing black spaces, before putting the check mark next to Zoom?
5. After you have left the Crop area, does your image fill completely the monitor space respresenting your project settings?.
Is green screen involved in this at all?
What did you use for Premiere Elements 11 project preset, one supplied by the program or one that you set up yourself? What are the properties of your source media and what preset did you select for your upload to YouTube via Premiere Elements 11's Publish+Share/Online/YouTube?