Video Killed the Radio Star
Gone are the days when YouTube was full of clips even America’s Funniest Home Videos wouldn’t show. Today YouTube is the second most popular search engine. It reaches more people between the ages of 18 and 49 per day than any US cable network. Companies like Netflix and Amazon produce their own high-quality shows and movies that rival Hollywood. Part of this rise is because online video is also no longer contained to your computer. Google reports that over half of their YouTube viewers consume video on their mobile device. This statistic doesn’t just take into account when people are on the road or at work. It includes people viewing content at home. So even when they have the option to watch the content on a laptop or desktop, they are choosing to view it on mobile.
Whatever You Want Whenever You Want
Quickly looking over my personal YouTube homepage, I see a wide range of different things: music videos, audiobooks, news and current affairs shows or clips and sports highlights. This wide range of content is available to me at a click of a button. It feels like having a privately tailored television network. And this YouTube viewing habit is gaining popularity.
Google recently conducted research looking into YouTube viewing habits; it found people watching makeup tutorials in the morning before work and catching up with what happened at the Oscars on their daily commute. Online video has seeped into people’s daily lives and routines. Given that we now sleep with our phones, our obsession with video is here to stay.
Different YouTube Viewing Habits for Devices
One YouTube trend is users viewing habits change from device to device depending on the type of content. For example, you might wait to watch the new Pixar trailer on your laptop so you can enjoy it in 1080p on a big screen. But if you’re watching a tutorial on how to reseal a Doritos bag, you can handle watching on your mobile. A quick breakdown, of where they found their major categories being watched, is below:
- Mobile: Beauty, Fashion, Pop Culture, Entertainment
- Desktop: Travel, Food
- TV: News, Sports, Comedy
Knowledge is Power
Now that you know your potential customers are viewing a staggering amount of video content, what should you do about it? This is a prime opportunity to think outside the box. Get creative on the kind of content your company can share online, and how it could be adapted to video in an entertaining or useful way.
One example of a company doing online video well is Blendtec. Blendtec is a blender manufacturer who has built a YouTube channel with almost 1 million subscribers on based on a simple idea: their blender can blend anything. Their cheesy infomercial videos are so popular and their following so loyal, they get crazy requests like blending an iPhone.
Other examples of companies using YouTube well are HubSpot, who share educational marketing content related directly to their product on their channel. Another is RedBull who share a lot of lifestyle related content. Like Blendtec, RedBull is an example of a company thinking deeply about what their product means to their customers. They focus on an energetic lifestyle, not an energy drink; they barely mention their range of drinks at all in their videos.
The same advice is also valid if you want to advertise on YouTube. Build campaigns around your customer’s mindset and intention by monitoring their YouTube viewing habits. Try and get inside their head and work out what is appropriate for them on the device they use, and what types of videos your ads should be paired with. Then consider the ad length and its placement. Recently I opened a 2 minute YouTube video, and a commercial started auto playing before I could watch. The commercial was 5 minutes long! Avoid that if possible.
What do you think about YouTube viewing habits? Will YouTube and online video mean the end of TV and cinema as we know it?
How can we help?
Do you have a company YouTube channel? Do the mobile shift in YouTube viewing habits ring alarm bells for you?
We are Spectrum Group Online, and we offer strategic and tactical consulting so you can monetize your online presence. Call us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your website’s user experience and translate that into sales.