Implications of YouTube’s New Abbreviated Subscriber Count

by | Published on Sep 17, 2019 | Content Writing Services

Getting a YouTube channel set up, filling it with engaging, informative and quality content, and marketing the channel can significantly increase a business’s visibility. YouTube is one of the most important channels marketers focus on as part of their efforts in social media healthcare marketing.

The Psychological Effect of Viewer and Subscription Counts

One of the most important motivating factors in YouTube channel marketing is the viewer count at the bottom of each video. Not only do marketers find that quite encouraging, they also rely on the effect of that count description on viewers who could see the popularity of the videos and be motivated to view them. Once that motivation works, the content of the video can do the rest. Equally beneficial is the display of the subscription count for each channel. Beneath each channel, you have the subscription numbers which also have the same effect in motivating other viewers to subscribe – a major asset in YouTube marketing. YouTube is now making some changes to the display.

YouTube will no longer be showing the full subscriber count for any channel having over 1,000 subscribers. But before you panic, let’s clarify matters. A better way of saying this is that YouTube will show abbreviated subscriber counts. Suppose your channel has 25,000 subscribers, it will only show “25K” instead of “25,000” till the number of subscribers reaches 25,100, at which point it will display “25.1K”. If your channel has 46,250,232 subscribers, it will display them as “46.2M” till the number of subscribers grows to 46,300,000 at which point it will show “46.3M”. 

The Good and Bad of This

Now that doesn’t sound as bad as it initially did, but it still doesn’t differentiate between a channel that has 250,000 subscribers and another that has 250,850 subscribers. Both will appear as “250K”. This is beneficial for the marketer who has the lesser number of subscribers, in that they get to the same league as the channel with the greater number of subscribers. Viewers just see it as 250,000. But for the marketer with larger subscriber count, the 850 more subscribers they’ve garnered aren’t visible to viewers. They’ll have to hope the number of their subscribers rises to 251,000 soon so that YouTube can mention “251K subscribers” alongside their channel.

subscriber count

Now this practice was already seen in many channels, but it wasn’t universally adopted. YouTube is now making it consistent across all channels and has provided a list in its support page of how the changes will be adopted:(Source:

Not surprisingly, this announcement by YouTube has not been met favorably by all creators. The company’s post that made this announcement had an alarmingly larger number of downvotes than upvotes. YouTube had initially planned to get this launched in August, but then decided to do this gradually all through the month of September.    

What This Means on the Ground

For individuals, marketers,or YouTuber content creators looking to get to the big league, and not quite having the subscriber count of those big hitters, this could be good news because the lesser number of subscribers they have is not glaringly evident. It reduces stress, and that’s one of the reasons YouTube has suggested bringing about this change. Creators can focus on their content ratherthan worrying about the numbers. For them, it doesn’t make much of a difference particularly for those having less than 1000 subscribers.

For those having subscribers above 1000, they just need to work to garner 10 more subscribers each time the subscriber count displays the revised, rounded figure. For creators or marketers having subscribers more than 10,000, they’ll have to work to get 100 more subscribers for the next change to be displayed in the subscriber count. From then on, it gets harder for marketers to effect a change in the displayed count.

Greater Motivation to Work Harder

If anything, this change by YouTube motivates marketers to work harder at marketing their YouTube channel and creating more engaging and quality, share-worthy content so that they get to the next subscriber milestone faster. Of course, they can analyze the effectiveness of their efforts through the private information available to them at YouTube Analytics and YouTube Studio where they’ll get the full, unabbreviated count. 

Experienced medical social media marketing companies can work on strategies to make your YouTube videos more popular and increase your subscription count so that you keep attaining those milestones.  

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