YouTube Steps Up to the Plate
YouTube, like any other social media venue, has remodeled from time to time. Some of last year’s favorites were the ability to choose from a list of pre-populated comments, Autoflame which enabled the inbox-free repeated swapping of insults between complete strangers, and the ability to change your video quality, not just the resolution but also the content.
We suspect, however, that the upcoming changes (in consumer beta as we blog) are not going to be so favorable. YouTube, owned by Google, is moving toward a more streamlined look which means less customization for its users. Yes, we said less. This will result in a look and feel that is more like Google+, a product they are really pushing right now.
The primary benefit to what they have coined the “YouTube One Channel” is strikingly similar to how many web design companies approach responsive design – a video channel that works across multiple devices. They are also touting branding across all devices, the ability to reach out to non subscribers, and more real estate for your content (which means less room for things such as personalized image covers).
We find this intriguing because it somewhat resembles Facebook’s move to increase the ratio of their News Feed vs. everything else on the page, leaving users with more of what they allegedly want (at least, what Zuckerberg believes you want). And what makes up the News Feed but content and links to more content (images will be housed in a designated area). Of course, YouTube’s equivalent to content is video and we all know that Google has preached and practiced it for years – content is king. It looks as though two of the biggest players in the industry are following suit.
Now that YouTube is up to bat, will this be a swing and a hit or a swing and a miss? All in all, YouTube wants to help your video sharing channels make great first impressions. And perhaps they will succeed in doing so but just like resistance to Facebook’s constant changes, we expect the same here. Like we said last week, it is going to happen whether we like it or not so it is probably best to embrace the changes and make them work for you rather than against you. That is our humble opinion and we ask that you don’t shoot the messengers!