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AFRWeekend | July 20, 2015

Big brands boost YouTube advertising by 60% in race for millennials market

By: Hannah Kuchler


The number of advertisers on YouTube has soared more than 40 per cent in the past year as big brands step up the chase to capture the attention of millennial consumers on Google’s increasingly popular video site.

On the eve of VidCon, an online video event in Los Angeles, YouTube said advertisers from the top 100 brands, based on a ranking by consultancy Interbrand, were spending 60 per cent more than they were last year.

The Google-owned website does not disclose revenue figures, but the data provide an indication of how it is benefiting from the explosion in demand for digital video advertising as millennials – advertisers’ term for the 18 to 34 age group – spend more time on the site.

Google spent more time than usual detailing YouTube’s contribution to the company on its earnings call last week. Ruth Porat, new chief financial officer, said “significant growth in YouTube revenues” was a highlight in the quarter.

Tara Walpert Levy, Google’s director of agency solutions, said the 10-year-old group had been in “hurry up and wait mode” until it saw a “sudden boom in one year”. She described how marketers were starting to see that young YouTube creators were becoming mainstream celebrities with their own TV shows and publishing deals.

“There was a Variety article seven or eight months ago which listed the top celebrities among younger folks, and the majority of them were YouTube celebrities,” she said. “It was a pivotal moment in the industry where marketers could not name half of those people, and they were like, ‘Wow, we’re out of touch with the very people we’re trying to reach.’”

Many brands partner with YouTube celebrities who create their own videos around the brands and post them to millions of followers. The number of monthly views of videos by the top 100 brands has increased 55 per cent from the previous year to 40bn views.

Growth in the amount of time spent watching videos on YouTube accelerated and is up 60 per cent year-over-year, Google said on its earnings call. On mobile, the average viewing session is now more than 40 minutes.

The digital video market grew 52 per cent last year to hit $5.8bn, according to data from researcher E-Marketer. It is forecast to grow 34 per cent this year to hit $7.8bn. YouTube has about 19.3 per cent of this market, and is predicted to edge up to 20 per cent this year.

Originally posted on AFRWeekend