YouTube Trends 2023: What Could Get Huge This Year?

A lot happened over at YouTube last year, but how’s 2023 looking? Let’s take a peek at which YouTube trends are set to get huge, what the platform thinks the focus will be going forward, and other pearls of wisdom.

YouTube trends

A lot happened over at YouTube last year, but how’s 2023 looking? Let’s take a peek at which YouTube trends are set to get huge, what the platform thinks the focus will be going forward, and other pearls of wisdom.

There are tons of topics to talk about when it comes to YouTube trends in 2023, Before we cover the specific areas YouTube themselves have underlined as hot property, let’s dive into some new, wider trends we should bookmark for 2023.

Travel content

The last few years haven’t been ‘regular’, by any definition of the word. However, one thing that seems to have stabilized of late is travel – and that means the return of proper, quality travel content! Vacation vlogs, hotel reviews, fun days out. Anything and everything. We’ll be shocked if some of YouTube’s trending videos from 2023 aren’t at least a little bit sun-splashed.

New YouTube trends

AI

AI-generated content has jumped from ghastly to pretty decent over the past few years. Using just a few prompts, creators can use AI to create still images and moving video. It’s mostly been for comedic effect, but 2023 could be the year that some of the trending videos on YouTube are composed by AI.

Video captions

As the years go on, Google searches for ‘video captions’ become more and more popular. But even if you don’t take that into consideration, video captions are a must. Here are a few reasons why:

  • 60% of YouTube traffic comes from non-English speakers
  • Adding captions has been proven to help boost your views
  • Doing so immediately opens your content up to the 400 million people worldwide who identify as deaf or hard-of-hearing

Whether it’s a trending topic or not, captions should be an essential piece of your repertoire in 2023.

YouTube Shorts

YouTube Shorts are so much more than just a TikTok competitor nowadays. These short-form, bite-sized videos appeal to viewers who’re after something a little lighter. They provide a happy medium between long-form YouTube content and the effort required to load up another app and hunt for something else.

Given YouTube Shorts rolled out monetization in 2023, we can expect to see a focus on this side of the platform going forward. Hop on the bandwagon, research some of the hot YouTube Shorts trends, and get busy filming! 

Watching trending YouTube videos

Gen Z

YouTube’s Culture & Trends Report was heavily skewed toward Gen Z, and with good reason. 96% of Gen Z-ers in the US have a YouTube account – by creating content with them in mind, you’re opening up an entire age demographic. What are the real YouTube trends, now, today? Better check in with Gen Z.

YouTube LIVE

YouTube LIVE is an ever-changing beast, having undergone several transformations since launching back in 2011. Live-streaming was a sure-fire method to engage viewers during the shaky years of the coronavirus pandemic, as it gave people instant access to their favorite content creators during a difficult time.

Even though things have opened up in 2023 and people can hang out in real life, YouTube LIVE shows no signs of slowing down. After all, viewers are eight times more likely to keep watching a live video than regular content. A tried-and-tested YouTube trend? Absolutely. Still relevant? Even more so.

360-degree video

Similar to YouTube LIVE, 360-degree videos really shone as a trend during the pandemic. Regarding things like property viewings and tours, the 360 format was unmatched – it gave people the next-best thing to physical access. It proved to be super immersive, and while it’s often associated with brands and companies, smaller content creators could make a significant impact with their own 360 videos. 

Checking out YouTube trends

YouTube as a search engine

YouTube is the second-largest website in the world, after its parent company, Google. With that said, more companies and professional content creators are viewing it as a search engine. That means optimizing YouTube videos for SEO, thinking like a customer who wants a problem solved. It’s where the money is: 45% of marketers spend more on YouTube than any other channel. 

Take the time to understand YouTube’s trending videos and topics, new and old. See if you can figure out why that particular video got more views than you can even count. Was it a fluke? Was the content just incredible? Did they SEO-optimize the heck out of it? Or was it a crafty combination of all three? Peeling back the layers and following how trending content catches fire will help you apply that logic to your own work.

There are tons of topics to talk about when it comes to YouTube trends in 2023, but why not start with what the actual platform thinks? The good folks over there have partnered with Ipsos to spotlight the latest content trends for Gen Z in 2023, all tidily bundled into the YouTube Culture & Trends Report. Let’s get stuck in! 

Personalized content

More than three-quarters of Gen Z use YouTube because it offers personalized content – it speaks to them directly. In fact, 65% actively prefer niche videos that specifically appeal to them, rather than to a mass audience. Definitely something to bear in mind when conducting audience research for your content.

Filming for YouTube

Focus on a niche

Hammering that last point home even further, Gen Z have pretty much accepted that culture is too big now. You can’t keep up with everything. There will be certain YouTube trends that pass them – and you! – by, and that’s fine.

Focus on what you’re good at making, and if the quality’s there, you’ll find an audience. After all, 55% of Gen Z admit they watch things on YouTube that nobody they know is even interested in!

Professional fandom

The age of the ‘professional fan’ is upon us, with channels like theneedledrop gaining millions of followers just by being an enthusiastic fan of music. 61% of Gen Z describe themselves as super fans – perhaps that’s where the latest YouTube trends will land. Reaction videos. Covers. Reviews. Discussions. People just appreciating the things they love. 

Memes

Memes have been around for ages, and they’re not going anywhere. 63% of Gen Z have followed meme pages in the past 12 months, and to take it one step further, 57% enjoy memes even when brands do it. Don’t be surprised if you see multinational companies hopping on new video memes across YouTube and, in particular, YouTube Shorts. Memes are just another way to relate and express yourself, so don’t disregard them in your own content!  

The metaverse

The metaverse still has a way to go before it becomes commonplace, but YouTubers across the globe are using it to express themselves. For example, in the Middle East and North Africa, gamers live-streaming on YouTube during Ramadan would even get their avatars to participate in fasting, too – it’s wild how this ever-changing, evolving digital space can mimic the intricacies of real life.

As a result, a new, popular trend we’ll probably see is YouTubers using avatars for more than just novel activities. Their digital doppelgangers will be putting in the groundwork to strengthen relationships with viewers, act as mascots for the channel, and more.

Browsing YouTube

Short-form and long-form both have their place

New YouTube trends pop up all the time, and in 2023, there’s no way of predicting what’s going to pop off in regards to video length. There used to be hard-and-fast rules in this department, but nowadays, 59% of Gen Z use short-form platforms like YouTube Shorts as a starting point for long-form content they’ll watch later down the line.

Appeal to people’s emotions

Plenty of exciting, game-changing stuff happens on YouTube. Sometimes, though, what people really want is a bubble-bath and hot chocolate. Bet your bottom dollar: soothing, mellowed-out content is going to be one of the biggest YouTube trends worldwide in 2023.

Why? Well, 83% of Gen Z watch YouTube simply to relax, with 69% returning to creators whose content comforts them. Expect a sharp uptick in nostalgic, feel-good vibes on your feed this year.

So, those are the key YouTube trends, current and upcoming, that could get massive in 2023. Time will dictate whether we got it right or not, but one thing’s for certain: with new ventures like YouTube Create popping up quicker than you can blink, the platform's more exciting than ever.

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