Over the past year, Susan Wojcicki has taken to regular videos and blog posts to discuss progress on the platform. The YouTube CEO today set out her goals and priorities for the new year, as well as recapping efforts from throughout 2018.
As mentioned during the Alphabet Q4 2018 earnings call yesterday, the number of YouTube channels with over one million subscribers has doubled in the past year. Meanwhile, the number of creators earning five or six figures has grown by more than 40% during the same period.
Susan Wojcicki’s goals for 2019 are similar to the year before, but streamlined. The first is supporting creator and artist success, with the YouTube CEO acknowledging how “it remains a pain point for many of you.”
On the creator side, we’ve been improving our classifiers so that we make the right monetization decision for each video. We’ve increased the accuracy of the monetization icon by 40% and are also making it easier for creators to appeal when we make the wrong call. But there’s still more work to do on both of these fronts and we’re committed to getting it right for everyone.
|2018 goals||2019 goals|
|Prioritizing Transparency and Communication||Supporting creator and artist success|
|Supporting Your Success||Improving communication and engagement|
|Giving People More Ways to Engage With Video||Living up to our responsibility.|
|Tightening and Enforcing Our Policies|
|Investing More in Learning and Education|
Other efforts include expanding YouTube Music and YouTube Premium availability to 29 countries in 2018 from just five at launch earlier in the year. To diversify revenue, features like Super Chat, Channel Memberships, Merchandise, and Ticketing were launched, as well as expanded.
To improve communication and engagement, YouTube Studio will be available to all creators this year and continue to add new features, like Known Issues, News widgets, and additional metrics. On the user engagement front, Stories recently launched to creators with more than 10,000 follows, and Community posts to those with over 1,000.
Many of you told us you prefer hearing from us through social posts, so we set a goal to be more responsive through those channels. In the last year, we’ve increased our number of responses by 150% and made our response times 50% faster.
But we also love meeting you in person. In 2018, we held more than 480 events with over 18,000 creators—from Fanfests, to Creator Summits, to workshops. We even had the opportunity to sit down with some of you for your channels.
Not only have we made changes to ensure they’re having a good experience when they visit, but we’ve prioritized supporting the journalism community. One key effort is the Google News Initiative YouTube innovation funding program, announced last summer. Hundreds of organizations submitted proposals and we awarded grants to 87 recipients to help them build up their video capabilities. We also expanded our breaking news shelf and top news shelves to 31 countries and look forward to expanding them even further this year.
Responsibility is also related to Community Guidelines and making sure YouTube “clearly communicate about the policies that impact [creators].”
All in all, 2018 was a year of change, challenges, and opportunity. This year will undoubtedly be more of the same. Keep the feedback coming—even though sometimes it’s hard to read—it’s your questions and comments that help make YouTube the very best video community for all of us. The creator community is what inspires me daily and makes this platform so special…so thank you again.