YouTube’s new metric shows an artist’s reach across all formats, including short videos

YouTube today announced that it is expanding its Artist Analytics tool by adding data related to short YouTube videos to the Total Reach metric, which gives artists and their teams an overview of how their music is reaching audiences on YouTube. Prior to this expansion, the Total Reach metric only included official artist-uploaded content and fan-uploaded long-form videos. YouTube says the new updated metric shows how many people an artist’s music reaches across all formats.

YouTube’s head of music, Lyor Cohen, said in a blog post that short-form fan-made videos increased the average audience of unique viewers by more than 80% in January 2023. Additionally, artists who are active in short videos have seen over 50% of new subscribers to their channel, on average, come directly from their short video posts.

The company is also launching a new “Songs” section in its analytics tool to help artists and their teams see how fans are listening to or creating with their music across all video formats. In the new Songs section, artists will see their best songs from the last 28 days and which songs are used the most in Shorts.

“Shorts are an appetizer,” Cohen wrote. “They are the entry point that leads fans to discover the depth of an artist’s catalog, including music videos, interviews, live performances, lyric videos and more. “Watch Rema and Selena Gomez win big using every video format available on YouTube. After surpassing 60 million unique viewers for their official music videos and Shorts for Calm Down, fans uploaded short videos of their track, taking viewership to a new level: adding 350 million unique viewers in January, up from more than 500- percentage increase.”

Image Credits: YouTube

In another example, Cohen noticed that artist Oliver Tree uploaded 20 short and 4 long videos related to his song Miss You, which saw his channel’s monthly viewership increase from six million to 75 million in over 4 months. In January, users gained an additional 1.8 billion views by uploading short videos of the song.

By including YouTube short video data in the total reach metric, the company may want to encourage more artists to use short videos to promote their new music, which in turn would lead to more daily views of the short videos.

Today’s announcement comes as Google revealed last month that YouTube Shorts are now watched by more than 1.5 billion registered users each month and average more than 50 billion daily views. While this is an important milestone, it’s worth noting that Shorts’ views are lagging on Instagram and Facebook. Last October, Meta said that Reels had amassed 140 billion daily views on both social networks.

YouTube was looking for a way to increase viewership of short videos. For example, the company launched short films on TV last November. The move was seen as a way to help YouTube better compete with TikTok, which launched its cross-platform TV app last year.

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