In 2011, we saw a lot of changes on YouTube, with the site getting a pretty major facelift and new features like YouTube Slam and the Google+1 integration, so it’s not really a surprise that many top social media influencers think the website will get more recognition as a major social network this year.

YouTube’s brand new look, in fact, says a lot about it wanting to go in more of a social media direction, although some say the new homepage looks more streamlined and business-like – perhaps because YouTube wants to make it more appealing for businesses and an older audience. Either way, it all boils down to YouTube’s desire to constantly innovate its business model since that’s the only way for it to really stay on top of its game.

Some social media experts also predict YouTube will get more dynamic and intuitiveViewers will find it easy to engage more with video makers and fellow audience members because of YouTube’s new features and layout. As a result, that will help create more opportunities  for videos to go viral this year.

Viewers can expect to see more high-quality videos as well with increased competition for eyeballs among content creators this year due to more YouTube partnerships being given out and more innovative businesses going on YouTube. And let’s not forget about the 100+ YouTube-funded channels that are poised to compete with offline TV networks this year.

In hindsight, new features on YouTube in late 2010 and early 2011 like the new annotations options, the ability to edit videos right within YouTube, Facebook and Twitter integration, and the like, were just laying out the blueprint of what to expect on YouTube come 2012. YouTube is only growing and getting better as time goes on so it continues to be the ultimate video sharing platform!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin