Skip to Main Content
Creators chatting at the San Francisco Creator Collective event

Rene’s Top Five on YouTube: October 19, 2023 Edition

These are the top five things I saw this week.

Hey, hi, how are you? I’m Rene Ritchie, your YouTube Liaison, and when I’m not helping our product and policy teams better understand creators and creators achieve better success on the platform, I’m scouring YouTube, X/Twitter, Insta-Threads and all the Slacks and Discords on the web to bring you the most interesting and impactful news this week!

So let’s just jump… er… get started!

🎤 Last week it was Neal on Colin & Samir and YouTube VP of Engineering, Scott Silver, on Nothing but Tech. This week, it’s VP of Creator Product, Amjad Hanif, joining Roberto Blake for another round of creator economy talk! They talk Generative AI Tools for YouTube, Aloud AI voice dubbing, Thumbnail A/B testing, updates on monetization, and more. Amjad heads the team that works on YouTube Studio (including Analytics), the YouTube Partner Program, ContentID, Fan Funding (including Supers and Memberships) and is deeply invested in creator success. Given Roberto’s focus on everything creator, you know they’re going deep!

📲 Whether you access YouTube on your phone, tablet, or via the web, the team has just started rolling out three dozen new and updated features to make your experience funner, fuller, and overall more fantastic. There’s the You tab, stable volume, press to 2x, easier seeking (and seek cancellation), lock screen, search by voice or song, and — get this! — smart animations that’ll light up the subscribe button when you tell people to smash it and make it sparkle when they actually get with the smashing. Also, rotating comment highlights, updating like and view counts, and so much more. A lot of this is for viewers rather than creators, but enhancing the viewer experience helps creators get more engagement! Check out the YouTube Blog or my video for more!

📺 And when you launch the YouTube app on your TV, you’ll see a bevy of new changes as well, like bigger thumbnail previews, nicer designs for official channel pages, more prominent voice search, better video menus, an improved Library tab, cooler QR codes, and more. Watching YouTube on TV is more popular than ever, and personally there’s nothing I love more than sitting back and hitting play on an in-depth long form video. And I agree completely with YouTube CEO Neal Mohan and creators like Michelle Khare: it’s long past time to see the best of YouTube go head to head — and Emmy for Emmy — with traditional media. Accept that challenge, and go watch the TV video for more on the new features!

✨ But wait, there’s more! YouTube has also rolled out some multi-format news goodness for mobile in around 40 countries (with desktop, living room, and more regions to come!) That includes an immersive watch page experience for news stories, highlighting content from authoritative sources across video on demand, live streams, podcasts, and Shorts. Just click on a video with the newspaper icon on the homepage or in search results to launch it. There’s also a Shorts Innovation program, so check out all the details on the YouTube Blog. Also, YouTube is making it easier to tag products by adding timestamps, bulk tagging, and affiliate revenue in analytics. Just in time for the holidays, it’s a great way to round out and stabilize your monetization, for evergreen buyers guides and hot new releases alike!

📈 Tip of the Week: YouTube Analytics opens with a 28-day view, which is great… except for when those 28 days show our channel performance going down, down, down. Does that mean our videos are tanking? The algorithm hates us? Our audiences have abandoned us? The sum of all our fears and anxieties! What’s super useful at that point is to stop, breathe, and switch views to 365 days. That’s where the greater trends can appear. For example, one viral video with tons of views two months ago that’s no longer getting those views now can completely distort recent analytics. It can make it look like performance is down when really it just went back to what it was before the viral video — maybe even slightly better! If there is an issue, of course we have to address it. We just need to confirm it’s actually an issue first!