YouTube is ramping up its efforts to attract TV ad buyers by unveiling a new ad offering during its annual YouTube Brandcast upfront event in New York.
The company announced that it will introduce 30-second unskippable ads on connected TVs, replacing the current two consecutive 15-second ads when advertisers target top videos through the YouTube Select program.
Enhancing YouTube Select for TV Advertisers
YouTube Select, launched in 2020, has been instrumental in catering to marketers who seek both high-performing and brand-safe video content.
The program provides advertisers with curated access to a selection of creators and publishers in categories like music, sports, gaming, food, entertainment, and technology.
YouTube Select has proven successful, securing over 70% of impressions on the TV screen, according to internal data shared by the company.
Longer Ads for Enhanced Storytelling
Advertisers utilizing YouTube Select will now have the option to target their campaigns with longer, 30-second ads. YouTube believes that this format better aligns with advertisers’ objectives and allows for richer storytelling.
It also eliminates the need for advertisers to create shorter content specifically for YouTube’s audience, as they can repurpose their existing collateral. YouTube anticipates that viewers watching on the big screen at home will be more receptive to longer ads, as this aligns with the typical TV viewing experience.
In addition to the introduction of 30-second unskippable ads, YouTube is introducing “Pause” ads on Connected TV devices. Advertisers will now be able to showcase their brand when viewers pause a video, further expanding their advertising reach and engagement.
YouTube’s Strong Performance and TV Ad Pursuit
YouTube’s ad experience updates come as the platform solidifies its position in the streaming market.
A recent Nielsen report revealed that YouTube (excluding YouTube TV) was the only streaming service in the U.S. to witness growth in viewing time, while others experienced declines or stagnation.
This favorable trend positions YouTube as an attractive platform for TV ad dollars.
Recognizing the significant shift in viewership habits, with almost half of YouTube’s U.S. viewership now happening on TVs, YouTube has been actively pursuing TV ad budgets.
By participating in TV upfronts and digital NewFronts alongside other tech companies, YouTube aims to capture TV ad prices.
Last month, YouTube reached over 150 million people on connected TVs in the U.S., further solidifying its presence in the TV advertising landscape.
Expanding Opportunities and AI Capabilities
YouTube is expanding its ad offerings beyond unskippable and pause ads.
It will soon allow advertisers to reach football fans across its NFL content, including live games on YouTube TV and Primetime Channels, as well as highlights, post-game commentary, and related content.
The company is also leveraging its AI capabilities, highlighting how Google AI can assist advertisers in identifying the most effective mix of ad formats to achieve their campaign goals.
With its latest ad enhancements and growing viewership on TVs, YouTube is positioning itself as an attractive platform for advertisers looking to engage with a wide audience and tap into the power of video storytelling.