Social Video Usage and Ad Engagement

How Reels and YouTube Shorts Stack Up Against TikTok’s Explosive Growth

Executive Summary

Short-video platforms will take center stage at this year’s Interactive Advertising Bureau NewFronts. Meta and YouTube will try to convince video advertisers to shift budget away from TikTok, and TikTok will try to defend its business in the face of a potential ban in the US. Here’s what video advertisers need to know.

Key Question: How close are Reels and Shorts to truly rivaling TikTok in usage and ad offerings?

KEY STAT: In 2023, TikTok’s share of US video ad spending will be more than double what it was in 2021—and it will encroach on YouTube’s share.

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Table of Contents

  1. Executive Summary
  2. Reels and Shorts are gaining users—but they don’t yet rival TikTok in time spent.
  3. TikTok’s audience is loyal, but a ban could send some users to competing platforms.
  4. It’s still hard to reach young people on Reels and Shorts.
  1. Video advertisers have been slow to shift budget to Reels or Shorts.
  2. Shorts and Reels must increase their ad options.
  3. On a brighter note, Shorts and Reels ads may outperform TikTok in some metrics.
  4. As Reels’ ad features improve, advertisers will benefit from Meta’s deep bench of tools.
  1. With Shorts, advertisers can tap new ways of working with creators.
  2. TikTok is tops for time spent and ad offerings, but Reels and Shorts deserve another look.
  3. Sources
  4. Media Gallery

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Debra Aho Williamson


Jasmine Enberg
Principal Analyst
Zach Goldner
Forecasting Analyst
Natalie McGranahan
Senior Researcher and Taxonomy Manager
Jennifer Merritt
Vice President, Content
Evelyn Mitchell-Wolf
Senior Analyst, Digital Advertising & Media

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