YouTube launches new destination for sports fans and expands its YouTube Select CTV offering
The way we watch video has forever changed. Not only are streaming platforms edging out linear TV as our primary viewing destination, but we’re forgoing traditional primetime and immersing ourselves in content that’s most relevant to us. For sports lovers, this means their fandom extends far beyond the game, where they turn to digital video to engage with everything from top 10 plays and game analysis to candid conversations with their favorite athletes.
YouTube is the place where people can find a wide range of sports content. In fact, according to ISG, YouTube is ranked the #1 preferred platform among sports fans in the U.S., higher than cable TV.1 And in today’s world (where our living rooms are now our own personal sporting arenas), viewers are tuning in on the TV screen more than ever on YouTube. Watch time on TV screens of sports videos, excluding live content, has increased by over 65% YoY.2
Today, we're excited to introduce a refreshed experience for sports fans on YouTube: YouTube.com/Sports. We overhauled the original /Sports experience to make it a more immersive destination so fans can engage with the best sports content. It includes everything from clips and highlights from the top leagues in the world to exclusive live games to premium content from popular athletes and creators.
To help advertisers reach today's digital-first sports fans, we're expanding YouTube Select’s connected TV (CTV) lineup, inclusive of the best sports content on YouTube, to new markets beyond the U.S. such as Australia and India in 2021.
A more personalized destination for sports on YouTube
In 2020, the number of hours of sports related videos uploaded to YouTube in the U.S. grew by over 40% year over year.3 YouTube.com/Sports, now available, makes it easier for passionate fans to find new and personalized content, and stay up to date with the latest news all in one place. Simply click the Explore tab on mobile devices or enter the page from the left-hand guide on your computer. This will be soon available on TV screens, too.
On this new sports destination, fans will find a collection of recent game highlights, sports news and locally trending videos. It ensures that fans around the world can see their favorite videos from the NFL, LaLiga, MLB, NBA, and WWE through upcoming seasons, and an array of other leagues in one place. That means fans could catch up on the other weekend’s Bills vs. Chiefs AFC championship game and then relive the classic 1993 AFC Championship game.
We are also excited to see young athletes embrace their inner content creator and highlight their content on this sports page. NFL WR Michael Pittman documented his rookie season on his channel and emerging boxer Ryan Garcia is equally likely to upload training footage and fun, creator collaborations.
All of this content and more is available on YouTube.com/Sports.
YouTube’s most popular CTV lineup is coming to new markets
The easiest way for advertisers to access the best of our highlights and live sports content is through our newly launched CTV offering as part of YouTube Select, which also includes other relevant categories like beauty and fashion, entertainment, music and more.
Due to the high advertiser interest we saw in the U.S. for the CTV offering, we are expanding to new markets including Australia, Canada, India and Japan and more in 2021. This means an easier way to align CTV ads to the best YouTube sports content viewed on TV screens across both YouTube and YouTube TV apps.
Early adopters like NordicTrack are seeing strong results.
Ryan Dunkley, Vice President of Marketing at NordicTrack says, “The unprecedented demand for connected home fitness equipment over the last year provided an opportunity to rethink our marketing strategy, and ultimately increase investment towards YouTube. YouTube Select CTV helped us find key audiences at scale, driving substantial lifts in both search (+91% lift in brand terms) and awareness (+4% lift in awareness)."
Reach out to your Google sales team to learn more about how the YouTube CTV Ads suite can help you achieve your objectives.
Be sure to check out ads from this year’s Big Game on the YouTube AdBlitz channel.
1. Google/ISG, US, Global Audiences Study, n=1404 Sports fans (those who ever watch any sports content), Jan 2020.
2. YouTube Internal Data, Global, July 2019–July 2020.
3. YouTube Internal Data, US, Jan - Dec. 2019 vs. Jan - Dec 2020.