The intersection of creativity and fan-fuelled participation will drive the next wave of success for India’s creator economy: YouTube

Telugu super news,New Delhi, India 9 August, 2023: Commemorating its 15 years since its localized version launched in India, YouTube shared unique insights on how the ingenuity of Indian creators coupled with evolving preferences of fans have shaped significant trends in creation, consumption and pop culture. Since 2008, driven by an expansion of creation tools and increasing preference for personalized viewing, India’s creative entrepreneurs have explored and conquered new frontiers of creative expression.

Today, as the digital video landscape is at a cusp of significant shifts taking place in technology, creativity and pop culture, YouTube continues to expand creative tools, ways to monetize and help them engage with newer audiences in meaningful ways, while giving creators and viewers a safe experience to create, discover and connect.

Ishan John Chatterjee, Director, India, YouTube, Digital video has always had the uncommon ability to break down literacy and geographical barriers. YouTube’s journey in the country, in many ways, mirrors India’s own digital transformation journey. 15 years in, YouTube has taken on many avatars – a place of discovery for trends moving the world, and a reflection of a curious, connected and vibrant India, that has embraced video as its language.”

“The beating heart of YouTube is and will always be its creators, artists and partners and we’re committed, as ever, to supporting the success of this ecosystem. We will continue to be laser focused on making YouTube the best platform for long-term success,” he added.

Here are five trends that showcase the impact of Indian creators and fans in shaping the digital video landscape and creator economy in India.

Creation has become frictionless

YouTube, today, offers a wide canvas of creative tools. The wide availability of video tools made creation simpler and fun. More creative tools have spurred an expansion of formats, which in turn resulted in more stories, more scale, more fans and impact.

In fact, 69% of Gen Z in India like when their favorite creators are creating in different formats (e.g. short form, long form, podcasts, live streams). Source: Google/Ipsos, YouTube Trends Survey, IN, May 2023, n=603, online Gen Z adults, age 18-24.

This creative expansion is helping breathe new life into popular, well-established genres such as gaming, tech, comedy or cooking, reviving interest in many niche topics and cultures (case in point: the growing community of Shayari and poetry) and fuelling the emergence of new genres like science, facts or motivation.

Consumption is multiformat and seamless

15 years ago, video was mostly defined by a single content format. But, today viewers increasingly expect personalized experiences, and use different formats to meet different needs — viewing long-form, short-form, live, and pre-recorded content across mobile and connected TV screens.

With 71% of people watching videos about a specific topic that they are into in multiple different formats (e.g. short form, long form, podcasts, live streams), consumption has become boundless and seamless. Source: Google/Ipsos, YouTube Trends Survey, IN, May 2023, n=1828, online adults, age 18-44.

Pop Culture is defined by how fans make them their own

A decade and a half ago, ‘viral’ trends represented a monolithic pop culture, where everyone experienced digital culture in the same way. Today, viewers have turned into amateur creators, adding personal expression and unique perspectives to video trends with ease, propelled by the explosion of video formats, easy to use creative tools and special effects features.

Consider this: 49% of people surveyed responded that they participated in a meme over the past 12 months. (Source: Google/Ipsos, YouTube Trends Survey, IN, May 2023, n=1828, online adults, age 18-44.) As a result of this, trends are traveling deeper, virality is defined by individuality and pop culture is all about personal expression.

Fandoms have become multi-layered

Thanks to both new technology and an expansion of formats, fandom is becoming more stratified. YouTube observed that while casual fans might have a feed that helps them passively consume more content relating to their fandom, a more active fan might use Shorts to create memes, or interact with their fandom by remixing or riffing on its content. Super fans may create content for other fans, and professional fans use their expertise to create for a general audience.

With 48% of Gen Z surveyed saying that they have watched videos made by fans of specific content, artists, or public figures over the past 12 months, the growing popularity of higher levels of fans is evident. Source: Google/Ipsos, YouTube Trends Survey, IN, May 2023, n=603, online Gen Z adults, age 18-24.

Pawan Agarwal, Director, Music Partnerships, India, YouTube, said, “Today, audiences want personalized experiences, in different formats, to meet different needs. And, these evolving preferences are redefining entertainment and making consumption more participative. This is allowing trends to travel farther, helping fandoms become multi-layered, and propelling subcultures to become mainstream.”

A parallel, new world of creative entrepreneurs is thriving

Artists and creators have been able to use YouTube as a springboard to building successful online and offline businesses – from launching next-gen media companies, to pursuing creative careers or creating successful lines of products and merchandise. As more sophisticated creation tools continue to democratize creativity, the creator economy on YouTube is taking new shape.

The latest survey by Oxford Economics showed that in 2022, 80% of creators in India, who earn money from YouTube, agree that YouTube provides an opportunity to create content and earn money that they wouldn’t get from traditional media.

The democratization of creation and more options for monetization have opened doors for next-generation creators from all corners of the country to participate in the country’s flourishing creator economy.

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