YouTube isn’t new, but advertising on YouTube might be a new concept to some. Today we’ll explore who’s using YouTube and how, and share a few tips for advertising on the platform.
Blurring the Lines Between TV and Online Video
People care about watching their favorite shows, but not so much about where they’re watching them. According to Brandcast’s 2017 stats of YouTube users, three particular trends demonstrate just how much people are blurring the lines between watching TV and online video.
- Users watch TV on YouTube, and they watch YouTube on TV. This last year, people spent 50 percent more time watching TV channels on YouTube than they did before. They also watch twice as much YouTube on their TV screens.
- Traditional celebrities and famous YouTube creators are both gaining fans on YouTube. Since 2013, the watch time of top 20 TV celebrity videos has tripled in the United States. And, in just one year, the number of YouTube channels with more than 1 million subscribers has risen 75 percent.
- YouTube is where users aged 18 to 49 spend their “prime time” hours. From 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. on an average day, YouTube has more visitors in this age range than any TV network, even if we’re only counting mobile.
The point for advertisers is that brands can benefit when they follow the trend of combining TV and online video. In fact, per Think with Google’s data (see previous link), many US television campaigns could have reached more 18- to 49-year-olds by combining TV and Google Preferred. Better yet, they could have done it without spending extra money.
Next, we’ll learn a bit more about YouTube users, and their behavior, to help advertisers figure out how to achieve such a lofty goal.
YouTube User Stats
Think with Google wants to deconstruct two myths about YouTube users. In an effort to call out misconceptions, Google shares some of the latest stats on YouTube audience demographics.
Myth #1: Only Millennials Love YouTube
The reality is that YouTube use is growing among older uses as well.
- Time on YouTube more than doubled for adults 18 and over from 2015 to 2016.
- For adults 55 and over, YouTube time nearly tripled from 2015 to 2016.
- YouTube time grew 40 percent faster among those 35 and over than for adults overall from 2015 to 2016.
- For adults 55 and over, YouTube time grew 80 percent faster than for adults overall from 2015 to 2016.
- YouTube reaches 95 percent of online adults categorized into both 35 plus and 55 plus every month.
Myth #2: Average YouTube Users are Young, Single and Male
The reality is that females use YouTube as much as males, and having a college education and family are common characteristics.
- Females make up 50 percent of the YouTube audience. Find out what women watch on YouTube in our recent post.
- College degrees are more common among YouTube users than they are among the general population.
- Having kids is more common among YouTube users than it is among non-YouTube-users.
YouTube User Behavior Stats
Going a step further, Think with Google addresses myths about YouTube user behavior with stats on when, where and what people watch.
Myth #1: YouTube on Mobile is Always During the Day and “On the Go”
The reality, even with most YouTube viewing happening on mobile devices, is that people like to watch at home during the evening. They also hold their phones horizontally.
- In an average week, and just on mobile, adults watch more YouTube than any cable network during prime time.
- Seventy-five percent of adults report watching YouTube on their mobile devices at home.
- Most at-home YouTube viewing happens during prime time.
- Seventy percent of users watch videos on their phone with a horizontal orientation.
- YouTube mobile users are twice as likely to pay close attention than those watching traditional television.
Myth #2: Users Only Watch Viral Videos on YouTube
The reality is that people get “lost” on YouTube doing research, listening to their favorite music, watching shows and more.
- People prefer watching videos on YouTube to watching them on less video-centric social platforms.
- The top two reasons people watch YouTube are relaxation and entertainment.
- YouTube’s top four content categories are comedy, how-to, music and entertainment/pop culture.
- Sixty-eight percent of YouTube users were watching for help with a purchase decision.
Advertising on YouTube
With such a broad audience that watches for a range of reasons, YouTube is prime real estate for advertisers. Read on to learn more about advertising on a platform that reaches more than 1 billion people during 6 billion watching hours every single month.
On YouTube, you can connect directly with your target audience in whatever way is most memorable (as an expert, in a personal way, etc.). It takes just minutes to create an account and upload your videos. With analytics, you can easily track viewer behavior and measure the impact of your videos.
YouTube offers a unique combination of videos and community, where the content elicits emotional involvement that other media cannot. Advertisements facilitate discovery and engagement. Data on that engagement is useful for driving more of it.
TrueView Ad Formats
Be aware that viewers can control what sorts of ads they see with TrueView, which alters ad formats and how viewers interact with them. In-stream ads appear before, during or after other videos, while Discovery ads are videos themselves.
You have plenty of ways to reach your target audience, including keywords, demographics, topics, affinity audiences, in-marketing audiences and remarketing.
Keep in mind that YouTube, like any platform, is imperfect. Occasionally, ads don’t match well with the content they accompany. As you create YouTube ad campaigns, consider what you might do if your ads appear next to videos that don’t align with your brand’s values.
If YouTube’s currently not a part of your advertising strategy, now’s the time to weigh the opportunity there. A lot of eyes are on its videos, and you’ll want some of them looking your way.