As this article points out, YouTube had a heck of a 2011 – and that is a big deal for digital media consumers. Check out some of the key info from the article:
YouTube underwent a redesign of the site that emphasized “channels”. “Channels” allow content creators to present media much in the way they might do so on television. The difference is that YouTube offers a much cheaper and easier to use platform for both creator and consumer. Cable providers better be watching this one. With new streaming media boxes finding their way into family media centers, it will not be long before everyone starts ditching their costly cable plans in favor of free digital media.
YouTube traffic is as robust as ever – they recorded 1 trillion views in 2011.
More key statistics:
48 hours of video are uploaded every minute, resulting in nearly 8 years of content uploaded every day.
More than 3 billion videos are viewed per day.
Users upload the equivalent of 240,000 full-length films every week.
More video is uploaded to YouTube in one month than the three major U.S. networks created in 60 years.
70% of YouTube traffic comes from outside the U.S.
YouTube is localized in 25 countries across 43 languages.
YouTube’s demographic is broad: mostly consisting of 18- to 54-year-olds.
YouTube has 800 million unique users visit each month.
YouTube added enhanced features such as “Slam” (an interactive video-discovery tool that randomly spits out two videos at time for one-on-one battles.), Google+ integration, more intuitive search options, “Analytics” (which gives creators detailed stats about their videos.), debuted a politics channel just in time for the presidential race, video editing capabilities, copyright offenders training, a merchandise store (which gives musicians an outlet to sell their music, concert tickets and branded merchandise within their YouTube channels.), live streaming content, creative commons content, and movie rentals. Whew, that is a lot of features. What’s more, there are a lot of features in that list that cable providers do not offer, and YouTube offers it all for free. That is a heck of a deal.
How is this possible? How can YouTube offer such robust service without charging the consumer a dime? It turns out that advertising is a huge hit on the service as well. YouTube monetizes more than 3 billion video views per week through pre-roll, promoted videos and other tactics. Regular advertising campaigns are finding enormous success on the service as well. And “more than 20,000 partners from 22 countries now are involvedYouTube Partner Program. YouTube says hundreds of its partners make more than $100,000 a year. Additionally, partners making over $1,000 a month is up 300% since 2010.” While cable providers are raising rates and increasing advertising and media companies are lamenting how expensive it has become to create quality content, YouTube has managed to find a happy medium that seems to satisfy everyone. If they can keep up the current pace, they may have created the foundation for a revolutionary new way of delivering media to consumers.
YouTube is also catering to musicians, by streaming concerts live and catering to music videos. The old model of music videos on television is now reinventing itself on YouTube as well.
Lastly, YouTube has worked its way into the most critical aspect of digital media today – the social network. Key stats:
Nearly 17 million people have connected a YouTube account to at least one social service such as Facebook and Twitter.
150 years of YouTube video are watched every day on Facebook.
Every minute more than 500 tweets contain YouTube links.
An auto-shared tweet results in six new YouTube sessions on average.
More than 12 million people are connected and auto-sharing to at least one social network.
Millions of subscriptions happen each day, and millions of videos are favorited each day.
More than 50% of videos on YouTube have been rated or include comments from the community.
100 million people take a social action on YouTube (likes, shares, comments, etc.) every week.
Boy that is quite the year. Media literates better take notice. If 2011 is any indication, YouTube is quietly building the next media powerhouse and may very well shape the landscape of media to come.
The article includes videos on these tidbits on info as well (of course it does! What’s an article about YouTube without videos?).