Who Dominated YouTube and TikTok in 2023, Plus 2024 Trends from TikTok, Instagram and Pinterest

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Description automatically generatedThis Week: It’s basically the end of December and here’s what you need to know. This issue is sponsored by my friends at Uscreen!

99 Shades of Beast in 2023: YouTube releases its 2023 Trending Topics report, giving us a snapshot of life on Big Red. My main takeaway – if Mr. Beast and DaFuq!?Boom! ever did a collab on Minecraft the internet would break. Here are a few highlights:

  • Skibidi Toilet ruled as the biggest trending topic, and its creator was among the top 10 breakout stars – although I STILL keep introducing others to this weird slice of internet life.
  • Frenetic fast-paced channels were clearly the biggest growth driver as 7 of the top 10 fastest growing channels were either Mr. Beast or Mr. Beast inspired. Two Shorts creators and a Roblox storyteller rounded out the list.
  • Minecraft still dominates, as most of the rising stars were inspired by the open canvas game.

TikTok’s 2023 Recap Leans into Culture, Creatures and Music: Double T took a different approach, instead providing “a window into stories that have inspired, entertained and educated”. The selected videos offer a more curated view into how TikTok wants to present itself, which includes cute (big) cats, dogs, frogs, how to videos, top celebs, musicians and more. It’s a far cry from what most users’ FYP page truly represents, and thus not useful as predictor or descriptor. Also, Barbie and Swifties ruled. But you knew that already.

Pinterest Predicts! I always love the annual Pinterest Predicts round-up and this year’s crop entertains and informs too. I’m looking forward to a “Jazz Revival” (check out a Kissa in Japan), “Blue Beauty” (quick tip, blue jeans never go out of style). They also predict that badminton will take a run at pickleball (but no mention of padel). And Jellysmack will love the upcoming “Be Jelly” trend. But I’ll probably stay away from “Melty Mashups” and “Eclectic Grandpa”. Discover all 23 here – and don’t miss the link to the PDF if you want a quick skim.

Threads Launches Tags: Now with less hash! You can now organize and join like-minded groups with the new tags function in Threads. Unlike common hashtag spam, messages can only have one tag – and tags can be either single words or phrases. @brian Solis likens it to Google+ Circles, which makes sense. Check out “Tech Threads” for an example (and like my post and click through on blue for more). I also just started the “Creator Threads” for creator economy discussions. It’s interesting to see these self-organizing groups begin to aggregate. Might be a flash-in-the-pan but could be the next big thing for the upstart Twitter competitor.

  • Related, Instagram rolls out “key findings” from its 2024 trend report too, but unclear if this is just for the US, as there’s a separate India report and presumably ones for Brazil, South Korea and the UK. Also frustratingly, I can’t find the report – just those top-line “findings”. Which means no public methodology for the “quantitative survey of ~5,000 Gen Z respondents across India, Brazil, South Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States.” And without a methodology, there’s no way we can trust the numbers.
  • Related, Meta owned Giphy for a hot minute, right? Did we really need *their* top 5 Gif report too? I guess we had no choice.

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CORRECTION: Last week I mistakenly included YouTube in the list of companies summoned to testify in front of the Senate over kids safety. A reader who spearheaded kids safety at YouTube set me right.








Thanks for reading Inside the Creator Economy this year! We’ve almost doubled in the last year, and hope to do even more fun stuff in 2024! Next week expect a little wrap up and some predictions – and then I’ll be taking the last week of 2023 off. See you next year – with meetups in Dubai the second week of January and Las Vegas the week after.

SPONSOR THIS NEWSLETTER: Want to reach 23,000 leaders in the creator economy? check out Inside the Creator’s sponsorship packages and/or email me at jim@louderback.com

I’ve built and sold multiple creator economy startups to top media companies – including Discovery and Paramount. Subscribe here on LinkedIn to get this newsletter every Monday.

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