Is YouTube the Next Big Thing?

The raw YouTube statistics are staggering:

  • More than 100 hours of video uploaded per minute.
  • More than 1 billion unique visitors per month.
  • More than 6 billion hours of video viewed each month.
  • Almost 40 percent of videos are viewed on mobile devices.

And, yes, I’ve (finally) put video into my 2014 business strategy, especially around a new line of business that I’m hoping to roll out in the first quarter.

While a lot of organizations see the Google video juggernaut as just another distribution system, YouTube executives have been busy building a powerful platform to disrupt the media and entertainment industry.

Is YouTube the next big thing?

Fortune’s August 12 cover story, How YouTube Changes Everything, looked at how the platform has shifted its focus away from one-hit wonders to subscription-based channels:

YouTube is not about to kill off television, but it is definitely starting to disrupt mainstream entertainment… If the first era of video entertainment was network television with a handful of channels and the second wave was cable with hundreds of channels, the Web incarnation is about tens of thousands of channels tailored increasingly to niche audiences. In this new world, YouTube is not only the biggest distribution platform but also its organizing force. Think of it as the next-generation Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Cox all rolled into one, but with a slightly different model: an open platform where anyone can put up content and where YouTube grabs nearly half the revenue from all the ads that run on the site.

 

The article sits behind a firewall ($2.99 for a one-month pass) so you’ll have to fork over a little cash for access. It’s important for businesses to understand what YouTube is doing, so I think it’s money well spent. Plus it’s a fascinating read.

Photo by webtreats (Flickr).

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