YouTube Shorts get a global expansion to 100+ countries – putting its TikTok competitor front and center.
YouTube Shorts were first available in India late last year before expanding to the US in 2021. Now people from over 100 different countries will be able to create short-form videos on YouTube. Those creation tools are being rolled out to everyone, which YouTube hopes will help increase short-form content on the platform.
YouTube is becoming more like TikTok as YouTube Shorts go global, while TikTok is embracing longer videos like YouTube.
It’s interesting to watch the two video platforms compete and copy one another. TikTok now allows videos that are up to three minutes in length, which was around the average YouTube video length when the service got started.
TikTok says it gives creators more flexibility in the content they create, especially for those making cooking and beauty tutorials. Cooking and beauty tutorials have long enjoyed a huge market on YouTube, which is why TikTok is embracing longer videos.
But it also means we’re more likely to see TikTok exclusive music videos in the future. Especially since it is becoming more common for TikTok stars to be plucked from the service to sign a deal by a myriad of record labels. According to TikTok, over 70 artists who got started on the platform signed major record deals.
While plenty of people got their start being discovered on YouTube, TikTok has stolen that thunder recently. YouTube is hoping that its short-form video platform will inspire more musical creations on the platform. That’s because every single video on YouTube can be used as a soundtrack for a Short.
Any music video, any meme, anything can become the background music for YouTube Shorts. Creators can opt-out of the feature, but most will be on board for the sheer viral nature of how TikTok videos and YouTube Shorts are shared.
YouTube wants to take the questions out of music discovery with its Shorts platform, too. If you hear a hit song on TikTok, you’re often left Googling lyrics to find out the name. But Shorts users can tap their way to the original music video from the original Short. That’s insanely valuable when something like a skateboarder drinking cranberry juice and singing Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” goes viral.
YouTube wants users to discover new and old music through YouTube Shorts, view the album on YouTube Music, and possibly buy concert tickets or subscribe to the artists’ channel… on YouTube.
“It’s great to get another promotional vehicle,” Lyor Cohen, YouTube Head of Music, told Digital Music News. “And another promotional vehicle that’s tethered to economics is just fantastic.”