YouTube is the world’s most popular video platform and the second-largest search engine, boasting over 2 billion monthly users.
With a quarter of the world’s population tuning in, countless creators cover a wide array of topics. Whether it’s makeup tutorials, short films, gaming streams, entrepreneurial advice, or brand promotions, YouTube hosts a diverse range of content.
For businesses, the platform serves as a crucial video marketing tool, enabling individuals and companies alike to transform their passions into profitable ventures. But for creators and brands alike, the question arises: how do you decide what topics to focus on?
One strategy is to tap into trends. Keeping an eye on what’s buzzing on YouTube provides a golden opportunity to capture the attention of new audiences and potentially skyrocket to virality.
This article discusses the top 11 YouTube trends for 2024, why they’re important, and how you may take advantage of them.
Why are trends important for YouTubers?
Every minute, over 500 hours of video footage flood YouTube, making it harder to stand out. Marketers, content creators, entrepreneurs, and brands need to offer unique value to catch attention.
Entertainment is crucial on YouTube; generic content won’t cut it. Staying ahead requires grasping and harnessing trends.
The Explore page features a Trending Videos section, showcasing what’s hot. These could be music videos, popular channels, viral hits, ASMR content, and more. For instance, here’s a trending video from a U.S.-based small creator.
This website is great for authors looking to create content on similar topics. Marketers can also use these patterns to shape their content marketing strategy.
Trends are essential for capturing and keeping viewer attention. They can enhance your channel by aiding in:
- Attracting a new audience
Starting out on YouTube can be tough. You might find yourself uploading videos regularly, but not getting much attention. Yet, if you make a video that taps into what’s trending, you could land on the Explore page and be recommended to viewers everywhere. It’s a great way to reach a whole new audience for your videos and channel.
Take “Squid Game” for instance. It’s a hot topic right now, and jumping on that trend can really boost your visibility. Big YouTube names like Mr. Beast and Jordan Matter have even created their own versions of the show’s games. Meanwhile, smaller YouTubers are discussing different aspects of the series, gaining attention along the way.
Review channel Heavy Spoilers decoded clues from the show, drawing in 20 million views within just two months.
- Trends help creators decide on future topics
Popular videos offer insight into current interests, giving creators ideas for future content. The Explore page is a valuable tool for planning.
To join a trend, add your unique spin to trending topics or tailor them to your niche to start a new trend.
- Connect with the target audience
Businesses can leverage current trends to form genuine connections with their target audiences, making their businesses more human. However, it’s crucial to be cautious.
When creating content to show that you understand these trends, make sure you truly do. A misguided perspective could quickly alienate parts of your audience.
What’s Trending on YouTube? The Top 11 YouTube Trends for 2024
Now that we’ve talked about how trends can help your YouTube career, let’s dive into the top 11 trends for 2024, so you’re prepared for what’s coming:
1. Follower-decided content
In the past, YouTubers had complete freedom to craft and upload content as they pleased. However, with attention spans dwindling and competition escalating, creators must now be more strategic in captivating their audience’s interest.
Rather than relying solely on their own ideas, businesses and content creators are increasingly turning to surveys, live streams, and audience comments to gauge what their viewers want. Armed with this insight, they can tailor their videos to align with their audience’s preferences.
For example, YouTuber LaurDIY recently utilized her Instagram Story to allow fans to make choices for her. By leveraging the feedback received, she empowered her followers to take control of her daily activities for a day.
Other interactions between creators and viewers include comments indicating preferences for specific video genres or topics, polls to select between subjects, and feedback from users. Engaging in two-way communication before producing content allows creators to understand viewers’ perspectives and encourages them to return for more.
2. How-to videos
How-to videos are great for teaching people how to do something, fix stuff, or learn about how things operate. They’ve been trendy for a while and are super important for YouTube SEO strategies.
When you search something on Google, especially a “how to” question, YouTube videos often come up first, beating out articles and blogs, especially for things like DIY home repairs. Just check out the search results for “how to fix a tap.”
Throughout the pandemic, people were keen to acquire new skills, leading to a surge in popularity for tutorial videos. Between March and July 2020, videos featuring “beginner” in the title saw a 50% increase in views.
Tutorial videos cover a wide range of topics, from makeup application and cooking recipes to software debugging and various other tasks. These videos are often easier to follow than written articles because they visually demonstrate how to complete a task.
Teaching viewers how to achieve something or solve a problem is a great way for both businesses and individual YouTubers to build trust and loyalty.
3. Live streaming
YouTube Live enables creators, entrepreneurs, and marketers to interact more authentically with their fans through live streaming. This feature is considered more genuine than edited videos because it captures real-time action, even during simple activities like a Q&A session.
This authenticity is a significant factor behind the projected growth of the live streaming market, expected to surpass $247 billion by 2027. Conviva reports a 266% increase in streaming over the past three years, with live content boasting an average play time of 25.4 minutes, surpassing on-demand video.
Watching live sports events and reacting in real-time has gained a lot of popularity lately. AFTV stands out as a leading channel where passionate fans gather to watch and share their reactions to live soccer matches.
Unless there’s a big shift, live streaming will keep growing in 2024.
Audiences see unedited content as your brand’s real face. It lets them chat live, keeping them engaged longer. Unedited conversations and live replies help users connect genuinely with your brand.
4. Current events
People can relate to what is happening around them. Creating content that relates to current topics can increase the chances of your videos being featured on the Explore page.
To take advantage of ongoing trends, businesses and marketers need to be flexible. A great example of this is from March 2020, when there was a surge in global views for sourdough bread-making videos, increasing by 260%. Due to the popular baking trend at the time, US retailers faced challenges in keeping up with the demand for yeast. However, YouTube played a crucial role in providing solutions and guidance.
The rise of sourdough bread on social media was a trend many food channels jumped on. They shared their unique recipes, adding their twist to the craze.
Yet, some creators went beyond the basics. They explored topics like “15 Mistakes Most Beginner Sourdough Bakers Make,” “Sourdough Bread For Complete Beginners,” and “Sourdough Bread Sandwiches.”
In 2024, as trends evolve, solopreneurs and brands will find numerous opportunities to thrive in their niche or local market.
5. Gamers continue to rise
Gaming videos have surged in popularity on YouTube over the past decade. In 2020 alone, viewers spent a staggering 100 billion hours watching gaming content on the platform.
As gaming continues to gain widespread acceptance, various types of gaming content such as gameplay videos, tutorials, and montages are expected to see even more engagement from audiences.
YouTube Gaming has become a go-to platform for many gaming channels, allowing them to livestream their gameplay and later upload the recordings for viewers to watch at their convenience. One example is VikkStar123, a member of the Sidemen group, who effectively utilizes this approach to connect with his fans and expand his reach.
Gaming live streams can go on for hours, allowing artists ample time to showcase their skills and connect with fans by responding to live comments. Streaming video games is also a great way to attract brand partnerships and sponsorships.
Although Twitch remains a popular choice for many gamers, YouTube is gaining traction, with 6.19 billion hours watched in 2020.
6. Shorter mobile videos
TikTok, despite its late arrival, has swiftly revolutionized the video streaming scene within a short span. Introduced in 2016, it rapidly ascended to become a dominant force in social media, boasting a staggering 1 billion active users.
In a bid to rival TikTok and empower users in crafting concise, mobile-friendly videos, YouTube unveiled YouTube Shorts worldwide in July 2021, concurrently surmounting the 15 billion daily average views landmark.
YouTube Shorts primarily caters to mobile audiences, who contributed to 40.9% of YouTube’s watch time in 2020.
If you want to reach a young, mobile-first audience, consider incorporating YouTube Shorts into your strategy in 2022.
7. Video chapters lead to more structured long-format videos
YouTube recently introduced chapters as a new feature to enhance viewing experience. Chapters are timestamps within videos that enable viewers to jump to specific sections.
For example, if you’re watching a lengthy podcast or a review of a TV show, you can quickly navigate to the part that catches your interest. This has led to more organized long-form videos, often divided into clear sections.
The YouTube algorithm prioritizes maximizing viewing time. As a content creator, leveraging clear chapters can help retain viewers and encourage them to watch your videos for longer durations.
8. Routine videos
Routine videos on YouTube typically showcase a creator’s daily rituals, whether it’s prepping for the day or winding down at night. They follow the tradition of “get ready with me” videos popular in past years.
These videos serve to inspire viewers to create their own routines or simply unwind alongside the creator.
Beauty tutorials saw a 50% increase in views in 2020, making them a valuable trend to take advantage of. They also offer a great chance for creators to land sponsorship deals, getting paid to recommend products from certain companies.
Brands are willing to invest, as 63% of viewers have bought products from a company they saw on YouTube.
9. YouTube Challenges
YouTube challenges have been popular for quite some time. Whether it’s the classic Cinnamon Challenge or the Chubby Bunny Challenge, or newer ones like “One Color Food for 24 Hours,” these challenges offer creators of all kinds a chance to get noticed.
Certain challenges like “Try Not to Laugh” are timeless and enjoyed by many, but every niche has its unique challenges. Food channels, for instance, often feature challenges related to calories or food colors.
Docuseries are a limited documentary-style video series. When it comes to YouTube docuseries, many people think of Shane Dawson’s Jake Paul series or Demi Lovato’s. However, there’s much more to explore.
These shows delve into fascinating topics like history, true crime, and sports.
Docuseries are particularly appealing to those who watch YouTube on TV. As of March 2020, the time spent watching YouTube content on TV screens and CTV in the United States had increased by 80% and 16.5%, respectively, compared to 2019.
So, don’t hesitate to explore more long-form, substantive YouTube video ideas.
11. Immersive Shopping Videos
YouTube has revolutionized the shopping experience, with 90% of people discovering new businesses or products on the platform.
Shopping-related content thrives on YouTube, ranging from hauls and “shop with me” videos to gift guides and product reviews. Creators engage viewers by showcasing the process of selecting and purchasing clothing items.
For example, a haul video featuring a Christmas sale can help viewers understand the offerings of a particular business and decide whether to make a purchase.
As a customer’s influence grows, so does the chance for brand deals and paid marketing opportunities.
How does the Trending page on YouTube work?
YouTube offers a unique selection of popular videos tailored to each country. It considers several factors to identify trending videos:
- View count
- Where the views are coming from
- How quickly the video is generating views (i.e., “temperature”)
- The age of the video
- Video performance compared to recent uploads from the same channel
These metrics help the platform find videos that appeal to a wide audience, cover current events, and showcase diversity. They also make sure the trending page isn’t just about views.
You can’t pay to get on the Trending page, and videos with mature content, vulgarity, or violence usually aren’t selected.
Does trending on YouTube matter?
Certainly, to some extent. Making it onto the Explore page can give you more visibility and boost your views and subscriptions. However, when gauging your success on YouTube, there are key factors to consider:
- View velocity: This shows how fast your video gets views after going live. The initial three hours are crucial for accumulating views. Posting at the right time and sharing your video link can help achieve a good velocity. View velocity affects how YouTube promotes your content.
- Average view duration: This tells you how much time people typically spend watching your videos. Ideally, you want them to watch as much as possible. Aim for over 50%. For example, if your video is 10 minutes long, you’d want viewers to watch at least five minutes of it.
- Watch time: This shows the total time users spend watching your videos. Hosting longer live streams can boost this metric. Even if only a small audience tunes in, your overall watch time can still increase significantly.
- Session duration: This measures how long users stay on YouTube during each visit. Creating a series of videos can help improve this metric because it encourages viewers to keep watching, especially if the series offers short, engaging content.
- Click-through rate (CTR) refers to the number of individuals who click on your video. Your CTR is affected by your title, thumbnail, and topic. Trending topics tend to attract higher CTRs, boosting your likelihood of getting recommended.
Recognizing and utilizing YouTube trends is a smart way to enhance your video marketing approach. These trends help you stay current, draw in new viewers, boost interaction, and foster significant brand expansion.
As this well-loved video platform continues to expand and change, it’s vital to watch for emerging trends.
Doing so allows you to seize these opportunities sooner, greatly amplifying their beneficial effects. By creating video content aligned with these trends, brands and creators can reach a wider audience.