Yes, YouTube is social media. When you hear the term social media, the terms: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram probably pop up in your mind.
YouTube is not just a part of social media; it is a social media behemoth. Any marketer worth their ambition would recognize it as such. As a result, having a YouTube channel has become extremely important in today’s scenario.
Before moving on to what makes YouTube social media, let’s look at social media itself.
In its rudimentary form, a social media platform can be described as an internet service that allows users to share information or interests with other users in an interactive fashion.
Social media is omnipresent nowadays. We see social media advertising in commercials, radio, billboards, websites, and even on our phones and other mobile devices. Hundreds of websites have Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest logos at the bottom. We are encouraged to follow blogs, become fans, and share and engage in various ways.
There are a few social media sites that are widely used. These include everything from social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to specialized photo-sharing networks like Pinterest.
Video: What is Social Media?
Different Types of Social Media Platforms
Social media platforms can be categorized into five types, they are:
- Social Blogging Sites: Eg. Twitter
- Message Sharing and Image Sharing Websites: For example, Instagram and Facebook.
- Discussion and Community-based sites: For example, Reddit and Quora.
- Social Networking and Job Search Sites: For example, LinkedIn.
- Video Creation and Sharing Sites: For example, TikTok.
Why Does YouTube Count as Social Media?
After watching a movie, have you ever thought about it? “Man, I need to share this one with my buddies” If your answer is yes, you have just defined YouTube’s journey as a social media platform without even recognizing it.
Users have co-opted YouTube’s features to establish a community, even though it did not intend to be a social media platform. As a result, it has added a few more personal touches to its social media platform. Here are the aspects of YouTube that make it a social media platform:
Personal Accounts: You will need to create a profile on YouTube before you can publish video content. However, this is not the situation when it comes to watching content. Anyone, at any moment, may access YouTube and begin watching as many videos as they like.
However, if you create a profile, you will be able to interact with the content. For example, you can like, share, comment, and subscribe to a channel to personalize your YouTube experience.
Each user will have a genuinely unique experience as a result of this. Your feed is tailored to you, and videos that YouTube believes you will enjoy are delivered directly to your mailbox. You can also make playlists for continuous listening.
Video: How to Create a YouTube Account?
Opportunity to Engage: The small thumbs up or thumbs down buttons just beneath each video allow viewers to rate the video. Those that are more favorable are pushed to the front page, while less pleasant or rarely seen videos are shown less.
This may seem insignificant, but it’s worth allowing viewers to interact with a digital creator. In addition, the channel owner understands that movies with higher engagement will be shared more frequently, so they tailor their approach accordingly.
A Platform for Influencers: Do you know who is in charge of NBC? Depending on what you are looking for, it might be any of these folks.
While you may not be familiar with Steve Burke, chances are you (or your children) are familiar with Blippi. Blippi earns more than $9 million a year from his YouTube channel alone as the famous kid’s channel host. His booming toy and live tour business are set to multiply that figure many times over.
Influencers understand that followers drive content development and that going viral with a video is the key to success. As a result, many influencers would call out their own YouTube fans in their videos (for good or bad reasons). In addition, they will do live Q&As and product reviews and even share user-generated material with the rest of the world. To learn how to become an influencer, click here.
People may label influencers as narcissists, but they do recognize the social component of entertainment. They also use it more effectively than other multibillion-dollar brands.
Viewers’ Interaction, Feedback, and Engagement (Subscriptions, Shares, Comments, and Likes): Anyone who has skimmed the YouTube video comments section knows how turbulent it can be. People applaud the video, pointing out its problems and requesting specific future content in the comments.
Subscriptions to YouTube channels give a platform for producers and fans to communicate. If you subscribe to a YouTube channel, you are interested in the creator’s content and wish to follow with their work.
Consumers are devoted to their favorite content and will battle to defend their favorites against random strangers. There are not many things that are more “social” than that.
It can also be the scene of some of the most spectacular online brawls ever. This YouTuber made a film out of the disputes in the comments section—what a clever play on words.
YouTube vs. Facebook and Other Social Media Platforms
Although Facebook is the most popular social media site on the internet, YouTube is rapidly catching up. As a result, YouTube has a solid possibility of replacing Facebook as the most popular social media network, with roughly 2.3 billion active users – compared to Facebook’s 2.9 billion.
Why? YouTube has a significantly faster growth rate than Facebook. Furthermore, YouTube is the most popular social networking site among 18-29-year-olds, indicating that it will not disappear anytime soon.
According to a report, YouTube’s user base steadily grew from 73 percent of adults in 2019 to 81 percent in 2021. Meanwhile, Facebook’s statistics stayed unchanged from the previous year, at 69 percent.
Facebook was not the only company with stagnant growth. Reddit, which climbed from 11 percent in 2019 to 18 percent in 2021, was the only other platform to have “statistically significant” growth since 2019, according to Pew.
Even though growth has halted, Americans appear to be no less addicted to social media. Facebook users claim they check the site numerous times a day, with 49% saying they do it multiple times every day. Similarly, 45 percent of Snapchat users and 38 percent of Instagram users open the app more than once a day. More than a third of YouTube users say they use the service more than once a day.
According to the survey, TikTok is used by 21% of Americans. On the other hand, younger people have a different picture, with TikTok’s share climbing to 48 percent among 18 to 29-year-olds. Unsurprisingly, YouTube is the most popular platform among this group, with 95% of respondents using it, followed by Instagram (71%), Facebook (70%), and Snapchat (65%).
How to Make Use of YouTube as Social Media?
So, how do you use YouTube to its full potential as a social media powerhouse? It all boils down to fundamental marketing skills, focusing on a few essential areas.
Know your Tone and Genre: Even if you want to launch a cooking-related channel, there is a chance it might be a huge hit. The only thing left to figure out is how you will approach the subject.
Many people plagiarize what is already popular on YouTube. While it is good to get inspired by what other channels produce, duplicating other producers is never a good idea.
People will pay attention to your material to hear your voice. It may take some time to find the right blend of what you like and what your fans want, but once you do, run with it.
Know your Target Audience: As YouTube has roughly 40 million channels, there is a good chance that someone else is already covering your topic.
Do you want to start a channel on archaeology? There is already a category for that. You also find videos on carpentry, architecture, and hunting. Good luck if you’re going to be the next trending gaming vlogger
That is not to say you should not use YouTube – far from it. It does, however, imply that you must be laser-focused on your area and niche. Determine your target audience and generate material tailored to them.
Increase your Brand’s Value: YouTube is not just a remarkable social media tool, but it might also be one of your most influential channels. If addressed correctly, it has the potential to help you expand your business while also allowing you to have fun and connect with others.
Video is a quick and effective way to get your message out. People respond well to visual signals, and video is an excellent way to capture the mood and physical characteristics of whatever you are selling.
Collaborate and Interact with Other Channels: YouTube creators do not live in isolation. They collaborate, network, and even appear in each other’s videos. These movies are sometimes complementary, and sometimes they are genuinely competing, but they are always entertaining.
You may use other audiences to your advantage by connecting with other channels. This is especially useful if you are promoting a specific product or if your new channel is still in its early stages of development.
Make your Search Engine Optimization(SEO) Better: YouTube is the second most popular search engine behind Google. YouTube users upload more than 100 hours of video every minute. It is one of the most effective ways to reach a large audience, whether you are marketing a program or informing a set of students.
One of the most popular content formats is video, frequently shared on social media. Since Google and other search engines favor video, publishing videos on YouTube with compelling titles, descriptions, and tags are terrific to enhance your search engine rating.
Explain Complex Concepts Relatively Easily: Video is an excellent approach to conveying things that are difficult to explain in words. Demonstrate to your pupils via screen capture recordings, live demonstrations, or even a whiteboard drawing.
YouTube is Mobile-Friendly: With so many students owning smartphones, video is an excellent way to reach out to them. YouTube is well-suited to mobile devices, and the vast majority of students already use it.
Spread your Message to a Wider Audience: YouTube is not only the most popular video site on the planet, but videos are also highly shareable. First, consider how frequently you encounter videos in your Facebook Timeline or Twitter feed. Next, how often do people send you files through email? Then, share the video across the internet.
It is Cost-Efficient: While having some sorts of videos made by experts has its advantages, not every video requires a massive budget. With minimum video equipment, you may quickly and effectively create compelling videos of lectures, presentations, and more.
Community Tap and Posts: YouTube was mainly used to watch videos in its formative days. This is no longer the case since the site offers a wide range of content.
Creators with over 1,000 subscribers can use the Community Post function to publish typical social media posts, including text, GIFs, playlists, photographs, and polls on YouTube. But, of course, implementing these features implies that the network considers itself to be a social media platform.
Video: YouTube Community Tap and Posts
User-Generated Content: YouTube is sometimes grouped in with video-on-demand providers like Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu. YouTube differs from the standard video-streaming services as users can produce their content.
The site allows registered users to upload videos. Anyone can watch them for free. Additionally, YouTube should be considered a social media platform because it can distribute information to a large audience.
Monetize Content: The business model of YouTube is another reason why it is regarded as a social media network. Users receive a free platform to consume and exchange content, while the platform generates cash through advertisements.
This is the same way that other social media networks operate. For instance, Instagram enables users to post photographs and short videos for free whilst earning money through ad sales.
How to Use YouTube to Grow Your Business?
A lot of professionals are apprehensive about testing the waters on YouTube. They hesitate as they are scared of failing to be viral. However, the goal is not to get a million views on your video. While it is fantastic to become viral with a single video, it will not necessarily help you achieve your aim of generating more leads and clients for your company. Furthermore, videos frequently go viral for the wrong reasons. Like any other profession, consistency is vital in YouTube. Here are the ways to build your brand on YouTube.
Have Q&A Sessions: Since YouTube is a significant search engine, you should approach video development similarly to content generation on your website. It would be best if you made it all about your ideal viewers. If you can answer their queries, you will be able to build instant relationships with those who need your help when they need it.
Be Consistent with Quality Videos: If you are going to put up the effort to use YouTube as a marketing tool, stick to a regular publishing schedule. A regular schedule, whether as twice a week or once a month, will keep your subscribers interested and help you position yourself as the go-to expert in your field.
Customize and Personalize your YouTube Videos: Your channel serves as the central portal for all of the videos you upload to YouTube, making the most of the customization choices available to personalize it appropriately. For example, you can organize your videos, create playlists, and select featured videos, among other things.
Collaborate with Other Content Creators: Again, it is all about making connections on social media platforms. As a result, seek out other creators you admire and professionals in your industry. “Like” their videos on Facebook. Subscribing to their Channels is a great way to keep up with the happenings. Leave them a comment to start a lively discussion. Interview them for your YouTube channel or work with them in another way. It is a terrific opportunity to meet new people, but it is also a great chance to demonstrate your knowledge and share it with new people.
Have a Call-to-Action: More people will like, subscribe, and ring the bell for notifications if you include a little reminder in your video. The same may be said about your offers, services, and objectives. As a result, mention your free book and other exclusive offers. At the bottom of the screen, write your phone number. Inviting viewers to visit your website or set up a consultation is good. Finally, rephrase your question in the video’s description section. It is a simple thing to do, but it has a significant impact on the success of your videos.
Be Interactive: In your video, ask questions that encourage viewers to submit comments. Also, if they do take the time to leave a comment, make sure you respond. Responses to fan comments that are thoughtful personalize your channel, create trust, and demonstrate that you are a pro who cares about what your viewers have to say.
Yes, the original version of YouTube was not designed to be a social media platform. However, it now qualifies as one, thanks to new features that allow users to engage with one another. YouTube is mainly used to watch videos and communicate with creators via comments and responses. From being marketed as a video housing platform to becoming the second-largest search engine, it is safe to say that YouTube has come a long way and is here to stay.