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Digital Life

YouTube, Twitter Mark Social Media Milestones

YouTube, Twitter Mark Social Media Milestones
March 21, 2013 4:37PM

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"Both entities are certainly a lot more powerful than they were a few short years ago. Twitter has had more hills and valleys. YouTube has been a pretty steady rise," said analyst Rob Enderle. "YouTube took a little while to find revenue. Twitter, of course, has had a little bit better luck of late finding revenue sources."

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It's a big day for social media. Twitter turned 7 years old and YouTube has hit a billion monthly users. Which is more significant?

Twitter has enjoyed meteoric growth and the platform is still growing. Twitter reports well over 200 million active users creating more than 400 million tweets every day.

"As we've grown, Twitter has become a true global town square -- a public place to hear the latest news, exchange ideas and connect with people all in real time," Twitter said in a blog post. "This is where you come to connect with the world at large. Get on your soapbox to critique elected officials, or go sotto voce to the neighbor next to you."

What 1 Billion Looks Like

Twitter even created a video to celebrate its seventh birthday -- and hosted it on YouTube. Google's YouTube is about 8 years old and hosts videos from all over the world.

"Tens of thousands of partners have created channels that have found and built businesses for passionate, engaged audiences," YouTube said in a blog post. "Advertisers have taken notice: all of the Ad Age Top 100 brands are now running campaigns on YouTube. And today, we're announcing a new milestone: YouTube now has more than a billion unique users every single month."

What does a billion people tuning into YouTube look like? According to YouTube, nearly one out of every two people on the Internet visits YouTube. What's more, YouTube's monthly viewership is the equivalent of roughly 10 Super Bowl audiences.

If YouTube were a country it would be the third largest in the world, after China and India. PSY and Madonna would have to repeat their Madison Square Garden performance in front of a packed house 200,000 more times.

YouTube Trumps Twitter

We asked Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group, about the social media milestones. He told us they were both significant, but points to YouTube's 1 billion monthly users as trumping Twitter's seventh birthday.

"Both entities are certainly a lot more powerful than they were a few short years ago. Twitter has had more hills and valleys. YouTube has been a pretty steady rise," Enderle said. "YouTube took a little while to find revenue. Twitter, of course, has had a little bit better luck of late finding revenue sources, though sometimes I wonder if they are not getting a little too irritating in how they do it."

Indeed, social media platforms, including YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Twitter, continue looking for ways to make money without annoying users. As Enderle sees it, YouTube has done a slightly better job than Twitter and has a more dominant position. That may be thanks, in part, to the Google expertise in digital advertising.

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