Google is among the three big tech companies. And no one can say it does not deserve the spot. The company has developed innovations that have proven to be very useful.Continue Reading
Released in 2018, Youtube Music has massively impacted the whole world by offering one of the best music services and opportunities. It is a music streaming app created by Google that focuses mainly on songs.Continue Reading
Since it was added as a feature on Instagram and Facebook, Stories has become a major staple of our social media life. In fact, Instagram has the highest number of users this year with over 400 million daily. It has even surpassed Snapchat and Facebook.
Who would have thought that this kind of posting format will hit big? Its popularity encouraged even other platforms to include it as one of their features. Netflix and Airbnb are now following in the popularity of this social media format. Not only that, YouTube is trying to also incorporate it into its platform.
YouTube is launching a “Stories” format and called it “Reels”. The video tech giant is currently testing it with its YouTube creators that has over 10,000 subscribers. It was successful with Instagram. Now, the question is, will it be successful with YouTube?
Do creators and subscribers really need this kind of format in the platform?
Features of YouTube Reels
YouTube is trying to create a not so similar Stories format for its platform. One is the people who have access to it.
In Instagram, anyone with the account can post their stories. However, with YouTube, posting Reels is only a feature available to creators with large followings. And instead of the normal 24 hours, the Reel gets to stay in their account for a week or seven long days. YouTube is also allowing multiple stories which are very different with Instagram and Snapchat.
Subscribers will be able to find the creator’s stories in the Subscriptions tab, while for non-subscribers, it will be in the “Up next” list. On the other hand, just like Instagram’s Stories, there will also be some editing features in Reels. Creators can add filters, music, stickers to their video stories.
What is also good is that viewers can add a comment on the Reels. They can also comment with thumbs up or thumbs down or even give a heart icon if they like the video.
Since YouTube is only opening the Reel features to creators with over 10,000 subscribers, we can say that it is trying to build its communities. It also aims to promote channels as well as increase engagement.
Other creators have already started using the feature. They used it to create behind the scene accounts for the videos that they are creating and will be publishing in the platform. This creates an exciting feeling for the viewers and YouTube subscribers.
With this feature, YouTube is encouraging its users to stay on the platform, especially for its creators. Now creators don’t need to head to Facebook, Instagram or other social media to post updates on their videos or accounts. They can use YouTube Reels to do that. They can update their viewers easier and in a low key way.
YouTube Reels is also a good opportunity for creators who occasionally creates videos. They can close the gaps by updating its viewers of what is happening to them. On the other hand, for vloggers who are posting frequently, using Reels may be a redundancy for them.
In the end, Reels is about making creators stay with the platform and increasing their audience engagement.
Creators and users have mixed reactions about YouTube Reels. Some say that YouTube is just jumping into the bandwagon of the Stories and it really does not need it. Another is that YouTube is just limiting it to its well-followed creators. It means there is no opportunity for budding YouTubers or small startups to try the feature.
Perhaps, the reason for this is that YouTube is trying to crack down and weed out inappropriate content on its platform. It is also cutting advertising rights to creators who are producing explicit content or graphical images.
On the other hand, other creators think that it is not reasonable to cut out advertising privileges just because the creator is touching the subjects of sex, mental health, and politics.
The problem with YouTube’s algorithm is that creators with high following continue to flourish, while those small and starting creators are bound to fail. This is because YouTube’s algorithm only favors those that have a sustainable following. They monetize them, while those that are small failed to get the monetization that they need since they are not given the right amount of exposure on the platform.
Using Reels, it is only another way to help those who have established accounts to flourish more. If Reels aim is to build community, wouldn’t be right to allow others to use it so other communities will be bigger? Also, it will help small or budding creators to create bigger communities?
10,000 subscribers may just be a small number for others. But with many YouTubers out there, it is hard to compete for attention. Thus, it is not easy to reach this number in a short period of time. Worse, those unfortunate creators have been in the platform for a long time and still fail to hit the 1000 subscriber mark.
It is also hard to gauge if Reels will be able to get audience engagement since the only indicator that you will have is comments and the reactions of the viewers.
Its purpose of audience engagement is good. However, if no one is using it, then it is a useless feature.
With Reels, brands can also use it to promote their product or campaign. They can create a poll, snippets or behind the scene footages.
It will be the same with Instagram. However, the big question is, will brands use Reels if they are already successful in using Instagram? Are they ready to take a risk in using another platform for their brand?
Remember paid ads on social media is not cheap. And trying to use all possible social media and social media features will surely cost your brands heaps of money. So better to think carefully and decide wisely which one will be effective for your brand. And if Instagram is effective for you, will you still move to other platforms, whether that platform has the same feature and purpose?
This feature is new. And it is hard to imagine a lot of people taking and consuming it in a short period of time. Furthermore, if it is not their platform, they won’t bother checking it out or much more use it.
These YouTube Reels is an interesting experiment. However, only the changes in the digital trends will tell if it will be successful just like with Instagram. Facebook and Snapchat has a steady follower on their own Story features, but will that mean the same for YouTube?
YouTube is making efforts to improve the platform’s interface by adding new features. However, while the PiP (Picture-in-picture) will certainly make YouTube users happy, an auto-generated thumbnail experiment might not as it is causing controversy. Read on to find out more about the latest YouTube updates.
YouTube updates: Auto-generated thumbnails experiment
Over the next couple of weeks, YouTube will be running an experiment with a new feature that only 0.3% of YouTube users can see. Instead of displaying the custom thumbnail uploaded by the channel, YouTube will show an auto-generated thumbnail.
We are running a small experiment where 0.3% of viewers will see an auto-generated thumbnail, instead of your custom thumbnail. We are not removing the ability to create your custom thumbnail, but we hope to gain insights on auto-generated thumbnails for the future.
— Team YouTube (@TeamYouTube) June 28, 2018
Thumbnails are a big part of what drives viewership on YouTube. YouTube creators have so far enjoyed the freedom of creating their own custom thumbnail that allows them to pick one particular image to represent the content of the entire video. It looks like this experiment by YouTube is highly motivated by the infamous tradition of “clickbait,” a common bad strategy for getting views when there are better view strategies available.
— Andrew Wall (@AwallDigital) June 28, 2018
There are a lot of clickbait scams that display a thumbnail that has nothing to do with the content of the video, thus fooling people into clicking on the video. It looks like YouTube is sick of that, and they’re trying to put an end to it by considering the auto-generated thumbnails. Here’s what YouTube said regarding this experiment;
“Over the next few weeks, a small group of viewers (0.3% of those on YouTube site-wide) will see the default, auto-generated thumbnail for all videos instead of the custom thumbnail. For creators, this is the second thumbnail that’s suggested when you upload your video. Note: this will not affect the content of the videos.”
YouTube states that there are no plans to remove the ability to add custom thumbnails (yet) and that this experiment only aims to improve auto-generated thumbnails.
Sharing answers to top q's we’re seeing about the thumbnail experiment:
– Custom thumbs aren't going away
– 99.7% still see the creator's custom thumbnail
– A lot of creators use auto-generated thumbnails, this test helps improve them for those using them: https://t.co/sOMYD9xhw0
— Team YouTube (@TeamYouTube) June 28, 2018
Even though only 0.03% of all users will actually be a part of the experiment, it still it is a fairly big number when you do the math. Considering that YouTube attracts approximately 1.8 billion active users, the auto-generated thumbnails may actually be seen by more than 5 million people.
YouTube updates: Rolling out Picture in Picture
This update will in no doubt be gladly accepted by the YouTube community. For a long time, YouTube users have been waiting for the opportunity to watch YouTube videos while using other apps. This option was available for paid YouTube premium and YouTube Red subscribers, it looks like YouTube is rolling out the PiP support to non-paying Android users in the US.
The new Android update with the picture-in-picture feature is my favorite update ever 😍😍😍😍😍😍 CAN FINALLY PLAY YOUTUBE WHILE IN OTHER APPS, I CAN DIE HAPPY
— Jesyka 👽🦄💀🥑 (@jesykahope) June 28, 2018
I don’t think it’s that serious, Jeyska, but you do you…
If you’re not familiar with the feature, here’s how it works:
- Picture-in-picture shrinks the video into a small player that users can move around their home screen and position over other apps. This feature allows you to watch YouTube videos while using other apps on your mobile device.
- In order to start the PiP playback while a video is playing, tap the Android home button. The video will then be shrunk into a PiP window, which can be dragged to different parts of the screen.
Keep in mind that this update is available for Android users in the US. Additionally, music content is unavailable for PiP playback without a YouTube Premium subscription.
Mixed feelings about YouTube’s latest updates
Even though the PiP update is deemed as positive, the auto-generated thumbnails experiment is causing a lot of arguments. YouTube users, especially hard-working creators, have had separate opinions regarding this experiment; with many complaining about the auto-generated thumbnails.
If YouTube wanted to combat clickbait with their new system of not showing thumbnails, they could at least only do it to channels that are already known to produce clickbait content
— Aar (@Aarmastah) June 28, 2018
YouTube may not be making any definite moves regarding the thumbnail situation soon, but creators are certainly fuming because they put a lot of effort into their custom thumbnails. YouTube creators can be calm, for now, because YouTube has repeatedly said that the custom thumbnails option will not be removed and that this experiment is for research purposes only.
YouTube is releasing its new YouTube Creative Suite marketing tools. They say that these tools will help marketers deliver a more engaging ad experience for their audiences, and allow them to more easily accomplish their marketing goals.
YouTube Creative Suite video testing tools
The site announced the new suite in an official blog post on Wednesday. The YouTube Creative Suite is comprised of several tools that will focus on providing better video insights for brands. These insights, YouTube said, will help them improve their campaigns’ storytelling.
Video Experiments is the first of the new tools. It allows brands to test their Google Adwords video ads right on YouTube. The tool lets marketers measure the effect of content on metrics like awareness or purchase intent in real time, offering you real ways to get more views.
Video Experiments is intended as an alternative to using focus groups to measure the above metrics and lets you conduct your tests in a real ad environment. The service is set to roll out for beta testing later this month.
Video Creative Analytics
Meanwhile, Video Creative Analytics will help you keep track of the various elements of your video ads and build better reports on creative performance. It lets you include audience segmentation in your retention reports. This gives you a clearer picture of how your videos attract different audience groups.
YouTube will also introduce the ability to annotate sections of your videos, like logos or product shots, later this year. The feature will show the percentage of your audience who saw these elements. This helps you track the impact various video elements have on your campaign and refine them.
Improving video storytelling
Rounding up the YouTube Creative Suite are the Director Mix and Video Ad Sequencing tools. With Director Mix, you can break down a video ad into its components, such as video, text, and key message. You can then easily rearrange these elements into different video combinations based on the context or audience that you want to capture. The tool is currently in alpha development.
The Video Ad Sequencing tool, on the other hand, lets you string a set of YouTube ads together and create a coherent story in many different ways. The feature could also be used to share your product message through multiple pieces of video content. Video Ad Sequencing is also currently in alpha testing.
Using the YouTube Creative Suite tools
YouTube revealed that several major brands have already been using the individual tools in the YouTube Creative Suite to enhance their online advertising campaigns. 20th Century Fox, for instance, relied on Video Ad Sequencing to create story-driven promotional ads for The Greatest Showman, such as this one.
Meanwhile, Kellogg’s took advantage of Director Mix to create more personalized YouTube ads for its Rice Krispies Treats. The campaign resulted in a 4% increase in product sales.
These companies highlight the advantage that YouTuber Creative Suite offers. By using each tool, you can better dissect your YouTube video campaigns and see which elements work best. This will help you build better ads around these elements.
Creating YouTube ads
Check out what each tool in the YouTube Creative Suite has to offer as they become available. They will be rolling out slowly over the next few weeks. Start experimenting with them right away, and you will definitely find them handy when creating the perfect YouTube ads for your brand.