Today, people want to watch videos that relate to their interests and passions – whenever they choose, on any device. For some of us, it’s guitar lessons, but for others, it’s baking their own masterpiece alongside experts like How to Cake It. Everyone’s primetime is personal, and what you watch often reflects who you are.
There’s no better place than YouTube to find the creators, music and shows that you love. And that’s why YouTube is #1 in reach and watchtime among ad-supported streaming media, according to Comscore.1
For advertisers, this means being able to reach people who are increasingly cutting the cord. In fact, YouTube now reaches more 18 to 49 year-olds in an average week than all cable TV networks combined.2
Tonight, at our eighth annual Brandcast event, we celebrated the creator, entertainment and music content that audiences love on YouTube. We also showcased new ways we can better help brands reach viewers in an on-demand world.
It’s all about the engagement and results
YouTube is focused on helping brands reach their audiences and drive business impact. To deliver this, we announced that Nielsen Total Ad Ratings (TAR) is now supported on YouTube. This lets brands compare YouTube and TV reach apples-to-apples.
Across the 20 Total Ad Ratings (TAR) studies we’ve commissioned with Nielsen for brands like Colgate and the U.S. Navy, YouTube has consistently driven incremental reach at a more balanced frequency compared to TV.3
And across all Marketing Mix Modeling studies we’ve commissioned from Nielsen in the past two years that measured Google Preferred, we had greater sales per impression than TV in every one of them.4
To give advertisers more opportunities to validate their investments, we announced that Nielsen Catalina Solutions (NCS) Sales Lift will be available for Google Preferred campaigns before the end of 2019. The tool helps brands measure the lift in offline sales for U.S. consumer packaged goods brands, and provide deeper performance insights across audiences, creative and more.
Karate-chopping the paywall: Bringing more YouTube Originals to advertisers
From Hollywood celebrities to top YouTube creators, YouTube Originals deliver the content audiences love. We saw this reflected in last year’s star-powered slate, which amassed over 2.5 billion views across 50 shows like Will Smith's "The Jump" or Liza Koshy’s "Liza on Demand."5
But some of our best content was still behind the paywall, including “Step Up: High Water,” which achieved unprecedented viewership for its season two premiere, and “Cobra Kai,” the critically acclaimed reboot of the 1984 classic “The Karate Kid.” In its rookie season, “Cobra Kai” received 11 award nominations (including an Emmy nomination), the Golden Tomato Award for Best TV Drama and a 100-percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes – making it the highest-reviewed reboot of all time. And just after its season two premiere last week, which reached 20 million views in six days, Parrot Analytics confirmed Cobra Kai is the most in-demand digital original series in the world right now.6
Today, we announced that all new YouTube Original series and specials will soon be available for fans around the world to watch for free with ads — just like they enjoy other content on the platform. And we are excited to confirm this includes the renewal of “Cobra Kai” for season three.
This gives advertisers more opportunities to engage with a broader audience, drive meaningful results and align with top Hollywood talent and YouTube creators.
Our new slate builds upon the success of our first two years. We’re continuing to focus on stories that delight us from our favorite personalities, inspire us through rich cultural moments and educate us on topics that matter. From returning hits like “Kevin Hart: What the Fit” and “Liza on Demand” to new shows — with Dude Perfect, Markiplier and a top secret project with Justin Bieber — the slate celebrates the diversity, authenticity and spirit characteristic of the YouTube community.
YouTube Originals will be available to advertisers through bespoke sponsorships or Google Preferred lineups.
More music live streams, more opportunities for brands
Last month, YouTube’s live stream of Coachella's first weekend was the most viewed yet, earning over 82 million live views — an increase of over 90 percent compared to 2018.7
After nine years of success in the desert, we’re doubling down on music festivals, starting with a new two-year partnership to live stream Lollapalooza this August. In addition to the curated live stream over the four-day festival, for the first time ever, fans will get additional custom content that gives them unique access to the festivals' artists.
These key moments in music, along with other cultural events like YouTube FanFest, provide more opportunities to reach audiences with the content they are most passionate about.
The magic of Google Preferred
Google Preferred represents among the best content on YouTube.
To help advertisers better reach their audience, we’re evolving our Google Preferred offering to reflect changing viewing habits, and help advertisers connect with those viewers where they are.
Our proprietary algorithm, the P-Score, looks at the popularity and viewer passion of specific content — things like the amount of repeat views and how often videos are shared to keep Google Preferred Lineups fresh. It also draws on protection, which places a greater emphasis on content suitability where Google Preferred Lineup ads will only serve on videos that are reviewed first by machine classifiers, then verified by humans.
Tonight, we shared that we’re adding two new ways to help the P-Score be even more useful to brands. There’s platform (for videos frequently watched on larger screens) and production (for content that has higher production values like advanced camera work or sound quality) to bring more high-quality inventory into Google Preferred.
Where our TV offering is going and how it’s growing
Our TV offering comes in two parts: The first is YouTube on TV screens, which is the YouTube app optimized for Internet-connected TVs. Tonight, we shared that connected TVs represent our fastest growing screen, where watch time now tops 250 million hours per day.8
The second is YouTube TV, which launched two years ago to give people a new and reimagined way to enjoy cable-free live TV along with the best of YouTube content. Now with over 70 broadcast and cable channels, YouTube TV is available nationwide and will be accessible as a standalone lineup in Google Preferred this upfront season. This change, along with audience guarantees and show-level exclusions, allows advertisers to zero in on live and on-demand inventory. And most importantly, brands can go beyond demographics to reach audiences based on their interests – just like with the core Google Preferred offerings.
For today's viewers, primetime is personal. With this expanded offering, advertisers and brands can reach and influence audiences on proven platforms like YouTube.
Check out #Brandcast to see highlights from the night.
1 Comscore OTT Intelligence and Custom Reporting based on Total Home Panel, September 2018, U.S
2 Google commissioned Nielsen study, U.S., May 2018. People age 18-49. Average weekly reach for Cable TV and YouTube (includes mobile, desktop, and living room devices)
3 "Nielsen Total Ad Ratings (TAR) Meta Analysis, including all 20 TAR US studies inclusive of YouTube in-app traffic commissioned by Google running from January 2018 to March 2019 across desktop, mobile and TV. Incremental Reach Value calculated as YouTube’s on-target incremental reach / YouTube’s Total on-target Reach. Standard Deviation 22%. On Target Frequency calculated as On Target Impressions / On Target Reach. Standard Deviation 6.5
4 Commissioned Nielsen MMM Meta-Analysis, US 2017-2018. Base: all the studies Google commissioned in 2017 and 2018 where Google Preferred Lineups was measurable, a total of 20 MMM across 3 categories. Count based on incremental offline retail sales measured as two-tailed significance > 90%. Effectiveness is defined as incremental sales per impression. Incremental offline retail sales measured for TV represents average across all TV broadcasters. calculated as On Target Impressions / On Target Reach. Standard Deviation 6.5
5 YouTube Originals YouTube Analytics, Global, Jan 2018-Dec 2018
6 YouTube Internal Data, Global, [Apr 24-30, 2019]; Parrot Analytics, [Apr 24-30, 2019]
7 Youtube Internal Analytics, Global, April 2019
8 YouTube Internal Data, Global, March 2019. Based on 90 day average of WatchTime for Living Room Devices, which include smart TVs, Roku/Apple TV, and game consoles