YouTube has unveiled new features aimed at enhancing creators' earnings and customer engagement, while aiming to support ad revenue sharing for content creators on its Shorts platform early next year.
The latest approaches are seen as attempts to stave off its key rival TikTok, which is growing fast.
"YouTube has supported the creator economy by enabling creators to gain money from their content through revenue sharing. Over the past three years, YouTube has paid creators, artists and media companies more than US$50 billion," said Mukpim Anantachai, head of YouTube partnerships in Thailand and Vietnam.
YouTube believes creators and artists should be able to transform their passion into a business, she said.
More than 14 years ago, YouTube kicked off these efforts with the launch of the YouTube Partner Program (YPP). Since then, YouTube has rolled out a multitude of ways that creators can make money beyond ads, said Ms Mukpim.
In Thailand, YouTube offers a variety of monetisation options for creators, including Channel Memberships with revenue sharing of 70% for creators and 30% for YouTube.
In the latest push to support content creators, YouTube introduced three new features called "Super Chat, Super Stickers and Super Thanks" to the Thai market on Wednesday.
Super Chats are highlighted messages in the chat stream that stand out to get attention from creators. Super Chats remain pinned to the top of a chat for up to five hours, giving more airtime for the poster's messages.
Super Stickers allow viewers to buy stickers to connect with the creators, who can earn more money from them. Stickers come in different packs and languages.
YouTube has introduced three new features, Super Chat, Super Stickers and Super Thanks.
Super Thanks allow audiences to buy a Super Thanks on a video's watch page, enabling the purchasers to post a distinct, colourful and customisable comment in the video's comments section.
According to Ms Mukpim, in June 2021, the number of YouTube channels earning from alternative monetisation products rose 150% year-on-year.
For that same period, YouTube channels earned over 250% more revenue from channel memberships compared with the prior year.
According to YouTube, early next year all new and existing creators in YPP will become eligible for revenue sharing on ads that are viewed between videos in the Shorts feed. Some 45% of the revenue generated by the ads will be given to Shorts creators.
"Our goal is to help creators make more money rather than pulling them from other platforms," she said.
YouTube has Shorts with up to one minute of viewing time. YouTube also has long viewing formats with two, five and eight hours available.
Ms Mukpim, centre, with creators.
"Creators can leverage multi-platform strategies as users are willing to consume content in different formats and platforms," said Ms Mukpim.
In May, some 12 million users in Thailand watched YouTube via TV displays, while nine out of 10 watched YouTube to explore products to purchase, she said.
According to market research firm Ipsos, 95% of Thais surveyed say YouTube is the first choice when they need to find something to watch, while 94% feel YouTube can recommend videos for them.
Some 87% of Thais say content on YouTube cannot be found on other platforms.