So the landscape of social media and YouTube is changing – and fast. Attention spans are shrinking, while content is getting both shorter and longer at the same time. Whaaat?
And then there’s AI. AI is the uninvited guest who showed up to the party. You didn’t realize they were coming so soon. And maybe you aren’t sure what to make of them yet.
We’ve done months of research into understanding what’s changed. We looked at some of the biggest data firms and marketing agencies, and it all culminated in this.
So we got you five huge YouTube video trends in 2023 for you to pay attention to if you want to start or grow a YouTube channel. Use them to have a banner year, or ignore them at your own risk…
Five Biggest YouTube Video Trends 2023:
1. Vertical Video
Our first YouTube trend – go all in on vertical video. There’s a wide consensus that short-form video will grow the most in 2023. Adobe says that short-form video currently accounts for 80% of all mobile data traffic.
So what are people doing on their phones? They’re watching vertical videos.
YouTube Shorts now have 1.5 billion monthly active users and see more than 30 billion daily online video views, which is wild.
Short Form Video Advantages
One of the powerful things about short-form videos is that you can create more content in less time. You can release more content into the wild. Which is kind of like more at-bats, more chances to get views, more chances to go viral, and more opportunities to be discovered.
Viewers are also more likely to engage. Attention spans are shrinking. And so it’s easier to get someone who doesn’t know you to watch a 10-60 second clip than to tune in to your 40-minute video podcast.
The extra engagement lets you pick up new followers who otherwise wouldn’t be exposed to your brand.
Your Phone Is All You Need
Plus, vertical video gets you in the game fast. You don’t have to be intimidated if you don’t have a fancy camera, a fancy mic, or know how to edit videos.
You can simply grab your phone. No mic, no accessories, just your smartphone. Have someone else hold it, or put it in a tripod – or just go selfie mode, punch fear in the face, and press record.
Put them up on YouTube Shorts, Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.
And know that not all views are equal. Maybe you get the most views on TikTok, but it doesn’t necessarily mean it was the clear winner in terms of audience quality. Because maybe your Instagram or Facebook views lead to more deals or revenue.
Give Them A Taste
Short-form content is the gateway to long-form content. You create short-form content for a chance to get discovered. And as someone’s interest is piqued by your content, maybe they dig deeper and go down your rabbit hole. Eventually, they might discover your YouTube channel.
How can that happen? Always, always, always include a link that leads back to your long-form content. And have a brief call to action at the end of the video to tell them what action you want them to take.
In your YouTube analytics, you can now categorize and separate your main videos from your live streams from your shorts. So you can attribute the views, growth, and revenue from your YouTube Shorts.
And as you may have heard, in February 2023, YouTube rolled out monetization for shorts. 45% of ad revenue goes to YouTube creators.
The Ideal Video Content Mix In 2023
And so this is what we think a good social media mix looks like in 2023. Is it only about vertical video? No. Is it only about long-form videos? No. It’s really not an either-or thing. It’s both.
One of the most successful content models, popularized by Gary Vee, is to start with long-form or pillar content. That’s your long-form content on YouTube. It could be your 40-minute video podcast.
Then you could create a 7-minute clip from your podcast – it could be highlights or an exciting segment. That goes on YouTube, also. And so far, it’s all landscape video.
Then you make snackable bite-sized content to spread over social media platforms to lure people in.
You can make 60-second reels, 8-15 second TikToks, 20-30 second YouTube Shorts, or two-minute LinkedIn videos if your target audience hangs out there. Do whatever makes sense for your content and audience. But sprinkle those snackable bites all over the interwebs and attract new followers to your long form.
But remember, just because a platform lets you make a 60-second short or post a 10-minute video doesn’t mean you need to use it all.
People’s attention spans are shorter than ever before. In fact, it’s all about understanding the eight-second rule, which says that the average attention span is now only eight seconds.
The Eight-Second Rule
A lot of people love to engage with something that’s creative and super brief. And so, we challenge you to try and make some vertical videos that tell a story, make a point, or give a quick tip.
Today we are constantly bombarded with content and information, so we’ve become scanners in defense.
Content and messaging that is instantly understood as clear, relevant, and interesting will capture attention. And any brand information or messaging that is confusing, complicated, or boring will quickly be ignored.
So be brief, be bright, be fun, and be done. Master the eight-second mindset.
And it’s only going to get worse moving forward. The average attention span dropped from 12 seconds in 2000 to eight in 2013. It’s likely already less than eight seconds in 2023. What’s it going to be in 2030? Four seconds?
So here’s a couple of tips you can apply.
Nobody Cares About Your Intro, Bro
One of the latest key YouTube trends is that people are not interested in short or long intros. We’re sorry, but nobody cares about your intro, okay?
Creators are like, oh, I got the cool b-roll shot. I’m popping off at the spot. I got a little b-roll slow motion, and I’m going to make a cool intro. Dude, nobody cares about your intro. Get to the point. Start the video. Especially if your intro is 30 seconds…Give us a break. We are trying to get to the content.
Intros are not a 2023 power strategy. See if you can cut those. Less talk, more action.
Reset Your Viewer’s Attention
Next, trim the fluff. Cut it out – nobody cares. And use your understanding of the eight-second rule to keep your viewer entertained.
We’re talking about b-roll angle changes, scene changes, pop-up graphics, video captions, and visual effects. You want to be resetting attention. Every eight seconds, right? Something’s changing.
There’s something happening so that you can keep the viewer engaged. You want to choose clear over clever, and you want to evoke emotion in your content.
Alright, now let’s move on to the second YouTube trend.
2. Embrace Artificial Intelligence
YouTube trends and YouTube culture can be fickle. But here’s the thing. Artificial intelligence is here to stay. And it’s not a YouTube thing. It affects EVERYTHING.
It’s also sort of scary, and it’s kind of a big deal. Content creators that ignore AI tools are going to get left behind. This is a fact.
Number one, AI is going to be a big deal. Number two – it’s not perfect. It makes mistakes, and it can’t replace human creativity and personalization. Not yet anyways… But the reality here is that this can save you massive time, right? And there are a lot of wild things that are happening in AI.
AI Tools Are Getting Scary Good
And so, let’s talk about one of our favorite tools, VidIQ. They have an AI title generator that quickly helps you write titles for your YouTube videos. You can also write AI descriptions.
Adobe Premiere has a color match and morph cut. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There are probably 40 or 50 different AI features inside the Adobe suite that make your life so much easier. AI gives you speed.
AI can also help write the bones of your video script that you can add to. AI can already edit your YouTube videos; it’s not pro video editing, but pretty darn good, and the technology is in its infancy.
Have you heard about Gliacloud? You could just upload social media posts, news feeds, or statistical data and let it create videos for you. What a crazy service you can use to supplement your YouTube marketing strategy.
And then there’s AI voiceover, which we think will be one of the latest YouTube trends. Some tools will actually take a script and then give you the voiceover. And it sounds like a dang human. It’s getting a little scary.
You can even create a voice model clone of your voice with Descript and then edit the text transcript of a video. You add a line of text, and the voice model adds it to the video. We live in a bonkers time!
So picture this. AI could design your thumbnails, write your script, do the voiceover of your script, write the description of your YouTube video, write the title of your YouTube video, and edit the video for you.
Are you even necessary anymore for your own YouTube Channel? Right? And so this is here to stay. And we think it’s wise to get educated on this. The practicality is to learn about this and consider which tools you integrate into your workflow in a 2023 world.
Use AI To Increase Your Productivity
Will AI ever replace content creators? We don’t know. But there are AI tools that can supercharge your content creation process.
As a business owner, you have to be thinking, will AI replace team members? It might if they don’t adapt. And it’s not that the AI can completely replace them. It’s actually that you should expect their productivity to go up. Because that team member should be using tools to help them go faster.
Let’s say it normally takes them 20 minutes to write a description for a YouTube video. And now they can use vidIQ to do it in one minute or even 20 seconds. 20 seconds to generate it, and then edit it in another minute.
Well, they just shaved 18 minutes off the time it took to do that task. And every single one of us needs to apply this. AI is definitely here to stay. It’s a surreal time to be a YouTube creator, isn’t it?
Want to learn more about what AI can do to speed you up? Check out our article on using AI video editing tools.
3. Start A Video Podcast
Next up, start your video podcast in 2023.
YouTube is now the most popular podcast streaming platform, boasting the largest listener base in the world and over 4 million podcasts.
You heard that right- YouTube is bigger than Apple podcasts and Spotify in terms of people listening to podcasts. Sure, audio is big as well, but here’s the power of video podcasts. You get both, right?
And video podcasts are personal and engaging. You can see what the people look like. You can watch their facial expressions and mannerisms. Sometimes they show images or videos on screen and talk about it. There’s an element of interactivity, and you feel like you’re a part of it.
Not only that, but YouTube is a search engine. Have you tried searching for Podcasts on Apple or Spotify? It’s not that easy, right? The best you can do is look at recommended podcasts or search by a category that you’re interested in.
On YouTube, just type in whatever you want and put the word podcast in there.
And from a business perspective, the power is in the fact that you can record a video podcast and then distribute it across audio platforms as well.
And so, lose the mindset that podcasts are just an audio experience. Your golden opportunity is to marry the two with a video podcast.
And let’s jump into YouTube trend number four, the return of search-based content and video SEO.
4. Video SEO – Create Search Based Video Content
This is interesting because, honestly, SEO never left. But it’s exciting because it kind of got forgotten about, right? Especially in the YouTube community.
The virality of YouTube isn’t search based. We all know it’s the suggested videos that keep most people watching. But many people missed out on the search-based opportunities by overcorrecting and throwing the baby out with the bathwater.
So a full 68% of online experiences begin with a search engine. Think about that. YouTube is the second largest search engine. And, of course, Google is the first. Why does that matter?
Remember that your YouTube content can be found in search engines. And Google owns YouTube, so those two platforms love to communicate, talk to each other, and cross-promote.
So…Don’t underestimate the power of chapters, power of time codes, and video searchability. Key moments from videos rank on the first page of Google, right? You see them all the time when you search for information. Sometimes the top snippet result is from a YouTube video.
And so be thoughtful about learning how to write SEO and copy – meaning text, titles, descriptions, and chapters.
Voice Search Is The Future
Even more important. Optimize your content for discoverability – it’s a huge deal. One way to do that? Tap into voice search.
Businesses are responding by changing how they frame information to answer their reader’s questions – and they’re doing it based on intent.
And creators are opting for more conversational, question-and-answer formats. Think video podcasts. This way, when consumers use voice search, they get high-quality and accurate responses more quickly.
And so, voice search is a major trend to watch out for, and it’s evolving. You got to know the new rules of ranking right in 2023. The big takeaway – you want to create for people before search engines.
You write how people speak. You realize there are people on the other side, not robots, although there could be because of all this AI stuff. So try to understand what people want when they search. Understand their intent.
And then here’s another big one for ranking in 2023.
You Want To Be THE Authority
Authority matters. You want to strive to be the best resource for your topic. This is a reason to niche down.
We know having a niche gets criticism. Oh, be a free spirit and make content about whatever you want…You don’t need a niche on YouTube.
But the truth is – Google loves authorities. They love people who go deep on something, and that’s part of their ranking. So there is channel authority on YouTube, which means you’re a resource on your topic.
On YouTube, of course, focus on CTR (click-through rate) and AVD (avg view duration). Those are your biggest ranking factors. It’s all about the click-through rate. It’s can you get someone to click on your video, and then how long can you keep them watching?
Trust Matters Too
But in terms of authority as well, by the way, 79% of consumers care about content trustworthiness. So building trust is also crucial.
By the way, a lot of mistrust comes from clickbait.
People promoting different brands that have turned out to be not the best people, or scams or frauds (FTX anyone?). It has left a lot of people wondering who they can trust.
Viewers care about your brand and your reputation, but also that you take the time to do your research. Not just fake news or fast content. You’ve seen it, where they blast a headline with a clickbaity title and poorly researched or thin content.
You want your YouTube channel, you want your website, and you want your brand to be trustworthy.
Authority + Trust = More Views
If you have both authority and trust, it helps you with SEO.
But how does it relate to SEO? It relates in the sense that when you create content, it should be search (intent) based.
What is the viewer searching for? What are their problems? What are their ambitions? What are they aspiring to do?
What are they inspiring to build? What do they want to learn? What do they want to watch?
Make intent-based content. Where you understand the intent of your audience and the goal of your viewers. And craft your content strategically to serve that intent. To serve what it is they want to solve or achieve.
So the creator who understands their viewers’ problems and ambitions best will win in 2023.
Make sense? Let’s jump into our last trend.
5. Be Vocal About Your Values
Now, this one surprised us. So what does that mean?
In a consumer trends research report, Hubspot found the third most memorable form of content is where a brand shares its values. Funny content and relatable content were #1 & #2.
They also discovered that 30% of marketers create content that reflects their brand’s values. Making it the third most popular content trend right now.
So this is pretty wild. And we want to encourage you to share your values. People want to know where you stand. People want to see what you support. People want to know what you care about.
A huge trend we see is that the creators and entrepreneurs on YouTube that really win don’t just create informational content or don’t just create entertaining content. They also weave in their values and are vocal about them.
So let us ask you a question. What is your mission? What is your vision? What are your values for your YouTube channel? What are the things that move you?
What makes you different from the next YouTube channel? What makes you different in business? This is called a USP. It’s your unique selling proposition.
Successful brands today are sharing their values. And if you don’t jump on this trend, you might be in trouble because people want to know where you stand.
So what are your values? Are you being vocal about them?
Bonus: Honorable Mentions
Here are a few more of the biggest YouTube trends in 2023 that didn’t make the cut.
Immersive shopping videos – also known as a “try-on haul”
How-to videos – these will always be in style
ASMR videos – let’s be honest. Some can get kinda…weird. But a lot of people love them (they are designed to put people to sleep)
Live streaming – viewers love interacting with their favorite creators to see their personalities unscripted
Double Bonus: Learn More To Grow Your YouTube Channel
Well, I hope you enjoyed our look at the top YouTube video trends in 2023. Here is your quick recap:
Use vertical video and short-form content as a gateway to your long-form
Embrace AI and increase your productivity – it’s here to stay
Video SEO – optimize your videos for search to get extra views
Become THE authority on a topic – Google and your fans will love you for it
Be vocal about your values. What do you stand for?
If you want to learn more about how to grow your YouTube channel in 2023 – check out some of these other fine reads. Cheers!