YouTube Trends in 2024: Shorts, AI, Reactions
Every creator must stay aware of media trends. Why? Because it will make your growth easier. It's important to understand how algorithms operate in the modern world, what will attract an audience, and which topics are relevant.
As creators, you need to speak the same language as your audience. That's why we have analyzed trends that will help make your channel popular and relevant in 2024.
Let's start with a question that has been relevant for the last decade: "Is it too late to start a YouTube channel?" And the answer is a resounding - no!
YouTube is gaining momentum every year, regardless of what anyone may say about the video hosting platform.
According to the latest data from 2023, the total number of daily views on YouTube reached one billion hours. In other words, there are more viewers and creators on the platform right now than ever before. People are watching videos and accessing YouTube more frequently than at any time in history.
And this concept is supported by Oberlo's data. Additionally, for consecutive years, YouTube has held the second position in terms of global website traffic, with only its owner, Google, surpassing it.
Therefore, if you still have doubts about whether it's worth continuing or starting a YouTube channel this year, the answer is clear. It is worth it! No other video hosting platform or social network has reached a level where they can compete with YouTube.
What is YouTube focused on in 2024?
Representatives of YouTube state that they will be focusing on Shorts format and much more. But first, let’s take a look at shorts.
For the third year in a row, YouTube has been dedicating all its efforts to develop and popularize short videos among content creators.
Analysts from Think Media are confident that Shorts will take off like never before in 2024.
- First, with the introduction of Shorts to the platform in 2021, views from mobile devices surged from one and a half billion per day to seventy billion.
- Second, Shorts have a whopping one and a half billion active users per month.
- Third, vertical videos have become a popular way of interaction among Generation Z.
The statistics speak loud and clear and Generation Z is making a splash. Whether we like it or not, we need Generation Z because they are adults with purchasing power, influencing trends through their interests.
Continuing on the topic of Shorts, YouTube has finally allowed creators the ability to advertise long form videos in their Shorts!
You can now insert links in Shorts to redirect to a longer video. This means that creators focused on producing long-form content can generate channel traffic from their short video feed. And since Shorts are becoming significantly more viral, there's a great chance to attract new views to longer videos.
Important tips when working with Shorts:
- Creators who produce short videos on topics that have no connection to their main content risk losing views on their longer videos and, ultimately, harming their channel. This is because these actions can attract two different categories of viewers to your channel.
- Creators who create Shorts on the theme of their channel without making them a complete piece—for example, "10 ways to gain subscribers," and you covered all ten—again deprive viewers of the motivation to go and watch a longer video. In nine cases out of ten, this can also impact views on your main content.
- If you use Shorts as a promotional tool and promote your full-length content, it effectively acts as a filter for those who may be interested in viewing your longer form content. Plus, it's also an opportunity to advertise your content, showcase your personality, and attract a new audience.
Now that we have covered the main points of short videos, let's move on.
There is a common misconception that live streams are exclusively a tool for gamers. If you still think that way, there's bad news – you are missing out on a multitude of opportunities.
Why are live streams important in 2024?
- Avoid spending hours on video editing.
- Deliver information to people immediately; the speed of information delivery is crucial in todays’ world, and often, the creator who delivers updates and trends the fastest wins.
- Diversify your channel content.
- Earn loyalty from your audience by engaging with them directly. While long videos may suit both new viewers and dedicated fans, live streams are very effective in building audience loyalty.
In other words, if your audience is not very active, you can try to energize them through live interactions.
Now let's talk about another, equally important and very underrated content format on YouTube.
Sometimes it seems like YouTube is pondering the question of "how to conquer the world," which is why it's involved in development on all fronts.
Currently, podcasts exist on YouTube in the form of playlists with a distinct, square format.
However, this format is not likely to last long in its current form. YouTube has announced that it is transferring podcasts from YouTube to the YouTube Music app. For us as creators, this is an excellent way to increase channel reach with an audience that listens to music.
The development of their podcast offerings will help YouTube attract a significant audience from other music and podcasting services. Therefore, in 2024, it may be a good strategy for you to explore podcasts and live streams. It's a wonderful opportunity to distribute content to a much larger audience than you may currently have.
YouTube divided into two camps
YouTube is becoming increasingly structured and user-friendly. Content is being curated by niche in the main menu, and video recommendations are becoming more personalized.
Looking at the broader picture, modern YouTube can be divided into two categories: entertainment and education.
While people still have a need for entertaining content, statistics show a growing demand for educational content. For you, this means that a substantial portion of viewers are interested in new content that will make their lives easier and address various issues.
According to Oxford Economics:
- 92% of users come to YouTube for information and knowledge.
- 92% use YouTube to solve everyday problems (“How-To”).
- 77% of female audiences believe that YouTube is a platform where they can continuously learn.
YouTube is no longer viewed as just for entertainment. Audiences of various ages view YouTube as an opportunity for free learning and as an essential aspect of their lives.
This means that YouTube provides us with opportunities to:
- Showcase ourselves as experts.
- Run a business and earn income through advertising, potentially eliminating the need for other employment.
- Find clients by optimizing videos correctly and creating genuinely useful and engaging content.
Review trends with reactions reviews
YouTube is created for viewers. Algorithms are built based on user interests, and essentially, viewers are in control. So, if you are still creating content just for your own enjoyment, you may not go far.
"54% of YouTube users say they would prefer to watch creators narrate or react to a significant event rather than watch the event itself."— The Shelf.
Reading a dry news summary with numbers and studying charts can be quite boring. It's also dull to be at the scene of an event and not understand what's happening.
Viewers value a brief summary of events, the most crucial and essential details, as well as reactions. Your reaction, as someone telling the story about an event, is important to viewers. They want to understand whether something is good or bad, why a meteorite fell somewhere, what the consequences are, and how it will affect them.
Therefore, another great opportunity to generate momentum in 2024 is through reactions or reaction content. This type of content allows people to digest your updates and the emotion they evoke in you.
However, reaction content is not the pinnacle of the content pyramid. Real trend are set by the people who create them – aka the content “synthesizers”.
The process of content synthesis has always existed and will continue to do so. Content synthesizers include politicians, media, public figures who present information to us through the lens of their own perception.
American biologist Edward Wilson once coined an easily understandable concept. He said, "Henceforth, the world will be run by synthesizers, people able to put together the needed information at the right time, think critically about it, and make wise decisions."
This is where the value of these "synthesizers" lies. Critical thinking, as sad as it may sound, is not a gift bestowed upon everyone. It takes work.
That's why not everyone can become popular in the reaction genre. It requires being incredibly knowledgeable, meticulous, and hungry for new information. Spending a lot of time studying it to be able to analyze and generate content that will gain the audience's trust. In essence, the value lies in how creators reinterpret this information for their content and their audience.
The integration of AI into YouTube happened a long time ago. Every feature and algorithm operates with the help of AI, allowing us to receive hyper-personalized content. For a while now, content violations have been handled entirely by the Content ID system.
Thanks to AI, we don't have to sift through millions of videos to find something interesting to view.
But it’s not all just about viewers. Let's explore how various neural networks and applications assist creators in content creation. AI can help creators with the following -
- Automatic generation of video titles and transcriptions
- Video editing
- Creating descriptions and titles
- SEO for videos
And most importantly, time-saving. That's why AI is truly the gift that keeps on giving.
Artificial intelligence is changing lives: it takes on tasks that we used to spend hours or even days on. And we are currently in the beginning stages of its development.
There is a belief that technology will develop so rapidly that soon we won't even need stock content, as AI will begin to generate highly personalized images or even videos.
No matter how much some try to ignore the possibilities of AI, if you want to stay one step ahead and not fall behind your competitors, you need to understand how it works.
This process can be compared to writing a book on a typewriter or by hand, versus writing it on a computer. You can write a book both ways; the question is which method will be more productive for you?
We live in a challenging era of rapid advancements. People are becoming accustomed to global changes and challenges. These changes are precisely what will define the future trends on YouTube, among other things.
Content creation in 2024 will be built on three pillars: authenticity, branding, and SEO modernization.
Let's go through them in order.
Authenticity will be at the forefront of vlogging
You've probably noticed that more and more vloggers are starting to speak honestly and unfiltered. They discuss their mental and physical health challenges, traumatic events, and show different facets of themselves, abandoning the glossiness we got used to during the early days of social media.
All this is because, as cliché as it may sound, people need people. Not images, but actual individuals who share their values, habits, quirks, and so on. So, if you're still trying to copy someone else with your content—stop doing that and start speaking honestly with your audience.
In this vast world, there are countless people, and we are all different, yet we still seek reflections of ourselves in others. Therefore, be authentic and cultivate a community of people who are similar to you.
Creators still chase numbers, focusing on some quantitative metric that will validate their success: subscribers, views, and so on. However, manipulating numbers online is very simple. That’s why you have some creators who are all smoke and mirrors. They have inflated bot metrics.
The truth is that word of mouth is still the best way content creators gain an advantage. Only when a person manages to establish themselves as an authority in something, will people begin to happily recommend their content to friends and acquaintances.
Therefore, the key to your success will not be your numbers but your brand. This point resonates with our first one about authenticity, but here we are veering a bit towards the business side of things.
According to a Goldman Sachs study, by 2027, the economy of content creators could approach nearly $500 billion. This means that over the next five years, media content creators will contribute staggering sums to their countries' economies and also earn high incomes.
It's crucial to emphasize the following point: to be that influential creator impacting the economy, it's not necessary to have huge numbers in your subscriber column. Advertisers continue to trust small vloggers with a loyal audience. Companies find it easier to distribute a million dollars among ten creators with a targeted audience than to pay a hefty sum to some popular vlogger with an audience consisting of an undefined audience.
Therefore, don't chase numbers; focus on the quality of your content and interaction with your audience.
SEO continues to be the primary tool for finding viewers on YouTube. However, it's not a very straightforward topic. With the emergence of various voice assistants, smart homes, and the development of artificial intelligence, people are less inclined to use traditional search methods. They are getting accustomed to conversational speech because devices like Siri, Alexa and others communicate with them in a language they understand.
To ensure your content reaches its audience, you still need to use keywords and queries. The more conversational and understandable your search terms are, the quicker modern users will be able to find you.
YouTube is a threat to streaming platforms
YouTube has surpassed traditional television a long time ago. And if you have any doubts, let's look at the facts. Almost a year ago, DataReportal released a report that clearly showed that YouTube surpasses the most popular streaming services worldwide, namely: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+, in terms of reach.
The statistics above mean one thing - it’s time to start or continue working on growing your YouTube channel. YouTube will continue to dominate in 2024. So your goal as a creator is to understand what YouTube and your target audience want and then to deliver it! Keep creating great content.