YouTube outlines key growth areas, including the rise of short films and the expansion of its creator economy
As TikTok continues to rise and other platforms eat away at the digital video market, YouTube remains the overall industry leader. And based on its current strategic planning and growth, it looks set to stay that way for some time to come.
Today YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki shared a preview key areas of the platform for 2022, and where it sees new opportunities, indicating exciting developments in the platform’s roadmap, and for online video more broadly.
Key things YouTube is focusing on include Shorts, its TikTok-like short video platform, which YouTube reports have now hit 5 billion all-time views, highlighting the potential of the format.
TikTok has become a key focus for YouTube as it seeks to maintain its position as the leader in online video. And while YouTube clearly remains the key app for longer content, TikTok’s booming audience poses a threat to its continued growth.
That’s why Wojcicki is also keen to point out another key point:
“The number of channels worldwide earning more than $10,000 per year has increased by 40% year over year. [while] YouTube’s creative ecosystem supported over 800,000 jobs in 2020.”
There’s a lot more potential for creators to make a lot more money on YouTube, as opposed to TikTok, as YouTube star Hank Green recently pointed out in a new music video, in which he called out TikTok creators to band together to demand a bigger slice of the platform’s growing revenue pie.
This call is already see some traction among high profile users, and possibly, it could help cement YouTube’s position as a monetization venue for creators.
This is a key benefit that Wojcicki wants to highlight:
“Now there is 10 ways for creators to make money on YouTube. Last year, YouTube channel subscriptions and paid digital products were purchased or renewed more than 110 million times.”
This last point is also important – amid the continued rise of digital goods, and especially NFTs, there are new opportunities for platforms to lean into the trend and provide more ways for users to showcase their purchases. digital items.
Twitter launched its NFT profile view option last week, and Instagram and Reddit are working on their own variations.
YouTube is also exploring its NFT options:
“Last year in the world of crypto, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and even decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) highlighted a previously unimaginable opportunity to grow the connection between creators and their fans. We are still focused on expanding the YouTube ecosystem to help creators take advantage of emerging technologies, including things like NFTs, while continuing to strengthen and improve creator and fan experiences on YouTube. .”
How that would work is hard to say, but it looks like NFTs, whether you like them or not, are about to become a bigger fixture in the larger social media sphere.
Wojcicki also addressed the controversy around YouTube’s decision to remove the dislike count on clips, which was widely criticized in some circles.
“We’ve seen dislike counts harm parts of our ecosystem through dislike attacks as people actively work to increase the number of dislikes on a creator’s videos. These attacks often target smaller creators and those just starting out. We want every creator to feel like they can express themselves without being harassed. So we experimented removing dislike counts across millions of videos over multiple months. In any case, we didn’t see a significant difference in viewership whether or not there was an audience count. And most importantly, it reduced aversion attacks.”
So while some users may find the deletion annoying and may want to come back, Wojcicki says the overall impact has been overwhelmingly positive, so he’s unlikely to change course on his decision, at least at this stage.
Wojcicki also outlined the evolution of system developments, including advances in user safety tools and creator reporting features, and the platform’s ongoing efforts to work with governments on new regulatory proposals, including the Digital Services Act (DSA) and Section 17. in the EU.
This is a solid update, which underscores YouTube’s enduring strength as it consolidates its market share and becomes an even bigger connecting element for users in various ways.
And YouTube is clearly in a strong position, even as potential rivals gain ground. Yes, TikTok is the app of the moment, while Facebook may have more overall users. But YouTube’s established frameworks and creator partnerships look set to keep it number one for online video for some time to come.
There’s a reason YouTube recently ended its Originals initiative to focus more on funding creators. And it could bring great benefits to the platform throughout the coming year.
You can read Susan Wojcicki’s full preview for YouTube in 2022 here.