March 10, 2023

YouTube launches its Reels rival, YouTube Shorts

YouTube launches its Reels rival, YouTube Shorts

YouTube launches its Reels rival, YouTube Shorts

YouTube has unveiled a new short video experience for mobile users. Currently, YouTube is testing a beta-version of ‘Shorts’ in India, and no doubt it will soon be rolled out to the rest of their users. So, what exactly is Youtube shorts? In this article, we’ll show you what they are, how to use shorts in your social media marketing strategy, as well as share with you 10 content ideas to get you going. Let's get started.

What is Shorts?

Shorts is short-form video for creators and artists who want to shoot videos using nothing but their mobile phones. Similar to the videos on TikTok and Instagram Reels, Shorts is a great way to publish and share 15-second videos set to music in an instant.

What do we know about Shorts?

YouTube has stated that they want creators to be able to take advantage of the power of their smartphones and be able to share high-quality content to entertain and inform at any time of the day, no matter where they are in the world.

YouTube states “we’re launching an early beta of Shorts with a handful of new creation tools to test this out. This is an early version of the product, but we're releasing it now to bring you – our global community of users, creators and artists – on our journey with us as we build and improve Shorts. We’ll continue to add more features and expand to more countries in the coming months as we learn from you and listen to your feedback”.

Needless to say, content creators will be jumping on board as soon as it is officially launched around the world.

YouTube shorts preview

So how can you use Shorts?


Creation is at the core of short-form video so Shorts offers the following tools:

  • A multi-segment camera to string multiple video clips together,
  • The option to record with music from a large library of songs that will continue to grow,
  • Speed controls that give you the flexibility to be creative in your performance,
  • And a timer and countdown to easily record, hands-free.

And more tools and features are on the way!

Get discovered

Every month, two billion viewers watch content on YouTube to laugh, learn and connect. Creators have built entire businesses on YouTube, and the company aims to continue to grow by enabling the next generation of mobile creators to also grow a community on Shorts.


There is a row on the YouTube homepage especially for short videos that lets you easily swipe vertically from one video to the next, plus discover other similar short videos.

How to use YouTube Shorts

What can you share on YouTube Shorts?

Anything that works in short-form video is ideal to share on this platform. Here's 10 ideas to get you going:

  1. Educational videos: This a great place to share informative content in an approachable, easy-to-digest format.
  2. Partner with an influencer: You could do a takeover, a hashtag challenge or share an endorsement.
  3. How-tos: Tutorials of all varieties do amazingly well on YouTube. Everyone wants to learn something new, especially if you can break it down into 60 seconds or less.
  4. Viral videos: Check out what’s trending and do your own version of it. Simple as that.
  5. Contests: Launch a contest, competition or giveaway for your audience.
  6. Challenges: Partake in a challenge or start your own. Social media has been known to go crazy for these, remember the Ice Bucket Challenge.
  7. Dancing: Performing choreographed dances worked on TikTok, they could work on this platform too.
  8. Lip-syncing: This is another TikTok fad that could either be lip syncing songs or lines from movies and TV shows. The most popular ones often have a comedic take and re-enact the dialogue in a funny way.
  9. Makeovers: It could be a hairstyle, wardrobe change, makeup, or something else but basically it’s like a before and after.
  10. Workouts: Workout videos are popular on all major social media platforms, so why not here. People love taking inspiration from their favourite social media influencers and copying their workout regimes or make it funny and relatable.
Content ideas for YouTube shorts


So there you have it, the next big thing to come out of the Google factory, YouTube shorts. YouTube has pinned Shorts as the new way to “express yourself in 15 seconds or less”. It's sure to have TikTok and Instagram nervous. Needless to say, content creators will be jumping on board as soon as it is officially launched around the world. We at Social Media College are looking forward to the day.

Jonathon Tanner

Jonathon Tanner

Co-CEO and Co-Founder

Co-CEO and Co-Founder of SMC, earned Social Media Educator of the Year from SMMI. With vast experience in social media strategy and content marketing, he's also a co-founder of other businesses. Specialising in growth strategy, Jon has a background in management consulting specialising in M&A.

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