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YouTube helps advertisers jump on viral content

Engadget Engadget 6/05/2016 Steve Dent
© Provided by Engadget

With YouTube's Google Preferred program, advertisers can target the most popular channels and categories, so that kitchen brands don't end up on, say, theSteiner Tractor Parts channel. Now, the site will let companies catch viral trends with Google's Preferred Breakout Videos. "Our new breakout videos offering lets them advertise on the hottest and fastest-rising videos on YouTube ... so brands can be there alongside the next breakout star," according to the blog.

While you may not care who advertises where, it will have an impact on what you watch. With the new program, advertisers will be able to quickly jump on viral content like Nae Nae or cat at a dog show with display, skippable or non-skippable video ads. Google says that it saw a 400 percent jump in spending on the Preferred program overall, which is a big deal considering that YouTube is still trying to make a profit. At the same time, music labels still believe that YouTube underpays artists compared to streaming sites like Spotify.

We reach more [18 to 49 years-olds] during prime time than the top 10 TV shows combined.

Advertisers seem to be getting with YouTube's program, as well, to the detriment of cable TV. During its Brandcast presentation last night, YouTube pointed out that one agency, Magna Global, shifted $200 million worth of ads from television to its site. The NBA also announced that its content would become part of Google Preferred, meaning it will gain higher rankings on Google Search and YouTube. According to YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, "we reach more [18 to 49 years-olds] during prime time than the top 10 TV shows combined." And of course, YouTube will compete directly with cable TV next year via its upcoming Sling TV-like "Unplugged" program.


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