Speaking of platforms that want to become TikTok, YouTube seems to be doing a fine job of it. A recent announcement from the media giant itself found that 75% of its 2 billion monthly users now access its Shorts feature. It appears that in at least some cases, platform imitation does work.
Stated YouTube, “YouTube Shorts are now being watched by over 1.5 billion logged-in users every month.”
That shouldn’t be too surprising as many studies have found that users prefer short videos, and 70% of internet users watch them.
A Good Reason To Use Them
According to YouTube, a byproduct of Shorts is that creators who make both long and short videos have found that engagement, watch-time, and channel subscriptions are higher as a result. Shorts views lead to views for the full-length video.
That said, a big downside of short videos in general is that once people get used to watching them, they have a difficult time watching anything longer. Try flipping through your TikTok feed for an hour and then watching a television show or movie afterwards and you’ll see for yourself. The pace seems amazingly slow as compared to what you see on Shorts or TikTok. Attention spans are definitely eroding, and that’s across all demographics.
That puts pressure on artists who have a song with a traditional form that clocks in at around 3:30 or so. This was once considered the sweet spot time-wise, but today can seem way long, especially when sections repeat. Even worse, try creating a music video for it. It seems like a long watch now.
But thanks to Shorts, you have a chance to pick out the hook or the best part of the song to get some traction, and hopefully an audience will like the short version enough to check out the longer one.
You may not want to cut up your masterpiece, but the data has spoken, and it’s in favor of shorter content. Shorts is a great way to make that happen.