Social media platforms YouTube and TikTok are clashing over short videos. While the Google-owned video platform has seen pretenders to the crown like Vine fall by the wayside, TikTok is proving a growing challenge for YouTube. However, the social media company has just unveiled its latest salvo in the war for user attention: paying short-form video creators.

YouTube introduced its Shorts concept in 2020 as an answer to the short-form content provided by TikTok. Now, the platform has said it will give Shorts creators 45% of ad sales revenue made from their content.

This increase for YouTube’s Shorts is lower than the average 55% distribution for the platform’s videos, Reuters reported. The Google-owned streaming company also announced a $100m fund to entice creators of bite-sized entertainment.

Any eligible creators can take part in the fund “by creating unique shorts that delight the YouTube community,” according a statement.

TikTok has, in comparison, a $1bn creator fund to entice and pay short form video creators.

TikTok still has a chance to catch up

YouTube is so far leading the streaming war with TikTok. YouTube Shorts attract over 1.5 billion viewers every month. In total, it has 2.5 billion users, according to Business of Apps. Comparatively, TikTok has 1.2 billion monthly users which is expected to rise to 1.8 billion users by the end of 2022.

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“Both platforms are quite different in their offering, but what we are really seeing is a growth in users using TikTok as a search engine – especially in Gen Z,” Amanda Walls, founder and director of digital marketing agency Cedarwood Digital, tells Verdict. “This is attracting creators to the platform as not just a way of showcasing their talent but also potentially promoting their products and services to users with high intent.”

Walls adds: “If users continue to use TikTok in this way, brands and services will have to start adapting. The launch of [the] TikTok shop has seen the ability to integrate eCommerce sales with this search platform very effectively, adding a really interactive element to it and the ability to monetise the platform effectively.”

This follows news that YouTube is also planning to launch a channel store, as Verdict previously reported.

GlobalData is the parent company of Verdict and its sister publications.