Product Management Short Case Study on YouTube Shorts

Rohit Verma
4 min readFeb 7, 2024


Suppose you’re trying to convince Google execs to keep growing the YouTube Shorts product. You can put 3 graphs in your slide deck. What graphs would you want to create?

YouTube Shorts has emerged as a pivotal player, providing creators with a platform for short, engaging vertical videos. As a Product Manager, it’s crucial to convey the importance of continuing to invest in YouTube Shorts to Google executives. This article outlines a structured approach, incorporating three key graphs that delve into market growth, user engagement, and churn metrics.

  1. Aligning with the YouTube Mission: To kick off the presentation, it’s essential to anchor the discussion in the overarching mission of YouTube. A compelling user quote can set the tone, illustrating how YouTube Videos have empowered individuals to express themselves and build communities. This anecdote serves as a powerful reminder of how YouTube Shorts directly contributes to the company’s mission.
  2. Market Growth and Penetration Rate: The first graph focuses on market growth and our penetration rate over the last 12 months. Begin by highlighting the Serviceable Addressable Market (SAM) and the rapid growth observed in the short-form video space. Overlay SAM with Month-over-Month (MoM) growth for the last year to showcase acquisition and activation metrics, emphasizing our market penetration rate (number of unique users per day). This graph provides a clear picture of our position in the market and growth potential.
  3. User Engagement Metrics: The second graph delves into user engagement metrics, a critical aspect for any content platform. Explore user session time per day on YouTube Shorts and assess whether increased engagement has translated into interactions with other Google properties. For example, examine the correlation between time spent on YouTube Shorts and traditional YouTube, as well as potential impacts on search activity. This graph illustrates the stickiness of the Shorts platform and its broader impact on user engagement across Google’s ecosystem.
  4. User Churn Metrics: The third graph addresses user churn metrics, a key indicator of user retention and satisfaction. Define and highlight the churn rate formula, showcasing how many activated users fail to engage regularly with YouTube Shorts. This metric is crucial for understanding the platform’s ability to retain and captivate its audience. Additionally, explore the hypothesis that increased engagement with Shorts leads to additional interactions with other Google properties, and consider overlaying this data on the engagement chart for a comprehensive view.
  5. Trade-Offs and Future Considerations: While hypothetical revenue potential based on engagement metrics could be a compelling addition, it’s advisable to hold off on this discussion, especially considering YouTube Shorts’ plans to introduce ads in 2023. Instead, focus on growth potential, user engagement, and churn metrics to make a compelling case for continued investment.

In conclusion, presenting a robust case for the growth of YouTube Shorts requires a strategic blend of storytelling and data-driven insights. By aligning with the broader YouTube mission and leveraging graphs that showcase market growth, user engagement, and churn metrics, Product Managers can effectively influence Google executives to prioritize and invest in the ongoing success of YouTube Shorts.

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Rohit Verma

Senior Product Manager @AngelOne, ex-@Flipkart, @Cleartrip @IIM Bangalore.