YouTube has been struggling to get its paid original content off the ground since 2016, with stiff competition from other premium video services such as Netflix, Amazon and Hulu. In an attempt to boost its paying subscribers, the folks over at YouTube will be targeting less saturate markets in the future, bringing content to international markets such as Japan, France, India, Germany, Mexico and beyond.
Susanne Daniels, YouTube’s global head of original programming, revealed in an interview with Reuters that the platform already has a number of music shows, documentaries, scripted shows, reality shows, and talk shows in the works across the selected countries, all produced in their local language. There are currently no plans for children’s programming, however, despite YouTube’s efforts in the US earning it an Emmy for “Fruit Ninja Frenzy Force.”
YouTube isn’t alone with its efforts to diversity content, as both Netflix and Amazon have invested a significant amount in penetrating international markets. Specifics of the upcoming titles are set to be unveiled in the coming weeks, however it seems that YouTube will offer some of its original content for free even if the majority will be behind its YouTube Premium paywall.
“We are targeting markets where we believe we have a tremendous upside in potential subscribers,” said Daniels. YouTube has already done its research, releasing a selection of successful original shows in South Korea and a single Hindi show based around cricket in India. The Gathering Begins, a K-Pop reality show actually managed to find an international audience beyond just South Korea, according to the company.
KitGuru Says: While the majority of this content will be inaccessible to someone speaking the one language, it’s good to see YouTube finally diversifying its content. Hopefully this will have a knock-on effect in the quality of Western series as talent is sure to cross the borders on occasion. What do you think about YouTube’s plans to bolster its paying subscribers?