About a few months ago, a panel of YouTube creators and kingmakers talked about the state of YouTube’s original channels. Some predicted that “90 percent” of 100 original channels under YouTube’s wing will fail in the next year or so.
While it’s not clear that the 90% number will become a reality, the New York Post reported that YouTube is culling part of its huge herd of original channels that it spent $100 million on at the end of last year. However, YouTube’s original channel push isn’t over yet; the same article said they’re looking for another round of funding for more original programming. Hopefully, this will mean more quality content for viewers hungry for entertainment.
A YouTube spokesperson wouldn’t confirm the Post’s story to NMR. Instead, YouTube issued this one-sentence statement: “While we don’t comment on rumor or speculation, our goal has always been to help all of our partners succeed on YouTube, with or without our funding.” Even though low-performing original channels won’t disappear from YouTube since they are independent entities, they may not get more funding from Google in the future.
Here’s how YouTube’s aforementioned changes for its original channels will affect their community of content creators and viewers:
Setting The Bar High For Content
If anything can be surmised from the alleged YouTube changes, it’s that the online video site is setting the bar high on its premium content. They have shown in the last few weeks that they are focusing more on how long people stay and interact with a video rather than how many people just check a video and leave.
Give Many Content Creators a Wake-Up Call
While having a high number of people viewing your video may be a personal ego booster, if viewers are not interacting or staying longer on your content, why should YouTube go further in its promotion of it? YouTube’s focus on interaction rather than numbers shows that they value quality more than quantity. No matter how many views you have, if you’re not attracting advertisers or monetizing your content, you harm your chances of garnering further promotion from YouTube or production companies.
YouTube Is Starting to Prioritize What Works
Although some of the channels anointed by YouTube’s $100 million push haven’t done so well, YouTube is slowly understanding what is working. Their added push for original programming signals that it sees potential in emerging creators and other content in its battle against television. Some of the more successful original channels cited in the Post report include Warner Music’s The Warner Sound and the lifestyle-oriented channel Reserve. Expect more music and lifestyle channels as part of YouTube’s second original channel push.