YouTube Launches Channel Memberships, Merchandise and Premieres | Digital Scoop 026

YouTube Goes After Instagram

YouTube creators are gaining three major new tools to generate revenue from their videos outside of traditional advertising, as well as those that will help them better engage their fans. This comes after Instagram’s launch of IGTV, so clearly this is a rebuttal since IGTV offers similar features.

This new features include rollout of channel memberships, merchandising, and the launch of Premieres. 

Memberships

Creators with 100,000 subscribers or more, are over 18 and members of the YouTube Partner Program qualify for this feature. For $4.99 per month, this feature will allow subscribers to gain access to members-only posts in the Community tab where creators can share custom perks, like access to an exclusive videos, news, announcements, and more. YouTube says it will vet these perks manually, to ensure they meet YouTube’s guidelines and are something the creator can actually deliver. The perks can be almost anything the creator wants to offer, within YouTube’s guidelines.

Merchandise

In addition to memberships, creators will also be able to sell to fans directly. The feature will show pictures of creators’ merchandise in a display under their videos. This tool is available to all channels in the U.S. with over 10,000 subscribers. This greatly increases the visibility of YouTubers’ branded gear on the platform. Previously, creators could only paste a link with no options to upload images of their merchandise in their video descriptions. This has the opportunity to increase sales by getting more clicks to products. Previously, people had to click “show more” to see the full description, creating an extra step in the process.

Premieres

Finally, YouTubers can use a new feature called “Premieres” that creates a landing page they can promote ahead of a video’s release. This page will also have a chat feature, like Live videos do, which means creators can use Super Chat and take advantage of Channel Membership perks even if they aren’t doing live content.

The videos are uploaded in the same interface on YouTube, so there’s no new workflow to learn beyond toggling the “Premiere” switch on. Creators can also join in the chats as the video goes live to engage with their fans around this pre-recorded content, as well as comment on the videos before they start. When the Premiere wraps, it’s posted as a regular video on the site (without the two-minute countdown video YouTube adds).

What’s next?

YouTube said its version of Stories will arrive for all eligible creators with more than 10,000 subscribers later this year as well. The announcements come at a critical time for YouTube, as Facebook and Instagram are trying to woo creators away to their platforms and video hubs with unique features of its own.

 

Instagram Launching One Hour Videos & Hub | Digital Scoop 025

1 Hour Videos And New Hub Coming To Instagram

Instagram is planning to launch it’s own video hub which could allow videos of up to an hour in length, instead of the current length of one minute. This new update could change the way your business engages with the younger demographic, teens and young adults specifically.

There are sources that told the The Wall Street Journal that social media platform has also been talking with influencers and creators about making long-form content (shows). Of course they are saying the plans are tentative and subject to change, but it all makes sense. If they actually releases this hub, this could be the platform’s moment to take users away from YouTube.

Teens have been flocking from Facebook and going to YouTube and Instagram. A recent survey found that teens are over Facebook and prefer other platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube. Over 80% of online teens are using YouTube, with 72% of them using Instagram. That’s a whole lot of video content.

Instagram’s new hub will be similar to Snapchat’s Discover and Facebook’s Watch and offer creators a place to show their content, shows and more. Even though you can upload videos up to an hour, look at this hub as YouTube. Expect to see 10-15 minute videos compared to the hour long. Continuing the attraction to content creators, the videos will also reportedly feature a swipe-up option to open an associated link so viewers can easily navigate to the video creator’s website or store.

If you looking to target the young demographic, then it’s time to start looking at how your business and utilize the new feature. How will your brand engage with teens and young adults? Will your business use Instagram’s new hub and hour length video when it launches? Comment below and let me know.

Facebook to Remove Trending Feature | Digital Scoop 024

 

Facebook to Remove Trending Feature.

Facebook says that it’s removing its “Trending” feature to make way for “future news experiences” on Facebook. Trending was introduced on the platform in 2014 as a way to help people discover news topics that were popular across the platform. It aggregated news topics based on what’s being shared on Facebook by users the most. It was also only available in five countries and accounted for less than 1.5% of clicks to news publishers on average.

Stated from Facebook’s press release, “From research we found that over time people found the product to be less and less useful. We will remove Trending from Facebook next week and we will also remove products and third-party partner integrations that rely on the Trends API.” 

Facebook also says that the way people consume news on Facebook is changing to be primarily on mobile, and increasingly through news video. So they are exploring, or trying out, new ways to help people stay informed about timely, breaking news that matters to them, while making sure the news they see on Facebook is from trustworthy sources.

Here are three new changes to replace Trending (so far):

  • Breaking News Label
    • This was a test they actually already have been running with about 80 publishers across North America, South America, Europe, India and Australia lets publishers put a “breaking news” indicator on their posts in News Feed, making it easier for readers to identify news while scrolling through their feed. They’ll also be testing breaking news notifications depending on the pages you follow.
  • Today In
    • Facebook is testing a whole new dedicated section on Facebook called Today In that connects people to the latest breaking and important news from local publishers in their city, as well as updates from local officials, businesses and organizations.
    • The test is running in just six cities for now: New Orleans, La.; Little Rock, Ark.; Billings, Mont.; Peoria, Ill.; Olympia, Wash.; and Binghamton, N.Y. Facebook users who self-identify as living in those areas will be able to visit the new section to see local information, like stories from local publishers or emergency updates from local authorities. Facebook is using machine-learning software to surface content in this new section.
    • This may change the newsfeed algorithm again for businesses. Stay tuned with Digital Scoop.
  • News Video in Watch:
    • Facebook will soon have a dedicated section on Facebook Watch in the US where people can view live coverage, daily news briefings and weekly deep dives that are only exclusive to Watch.

From the data breach to Fake News and content, Facebook needs to do something to keep users interested in the platform. What do you think of the changes? Comment below and let me know!