Google's YouTube Finds Money In Analytics
First Google found a way to generate revenue from YouTube video through Content ID. Now the Mountain View, Calif. company gives copyright holders a tool to track viewer sentiment to determine the best distribution and marketing strategy for music, video and other content clips that are generated and uploaded by the community.
Think Google Analytics for YouTube. The content management feature integrates Content ID, which allows copyright holders to find and monetize content uploaded across the YouTube network with YouTube Insights, a free analytics tool that lets media companies mine information. The combined tool could help copyright owners generate revenue from the data, which in theory should boost profits for YouTube.
ComScore released August 2009 data from the comScore Video Metrix service Monday. The data shows that 161 million U.S. Internet users watched online video during the month. Online video reached another all-time high in August with more than 25 billion videos viewed during the month, with Google Sites accounting for more than 10 billion.
Google sites continue to rank No. 1 in the U.S., surpassing 10 billion videos viewed in August, which represents 40% of all videos viewed online. YouTube.com accounted for 99% of all videos viewed on Google properties. Microsoft sites ranked No. 2 with 547 million, or 2.2%, followed by Viacom Digital with 539 million videos viewed, 2.1%, and Hulu with 488 million, or 1.9%, according to comScore.
Combining Content ID with YouTube Insights gives media companies data on view count, geographic region, most-viewed part of the video, and audience demographics. It allows content owners -- such as music labels, movie studios and advertisers -- to compare audience demographics between "claimed videos" and "official versions." It also provides data and insight into Web sites or search terms that drive the most traffic to versions of the content uploaded by YouTube members.
Now, all the statistics and the data from YouTube Insights is also available to Content ID partners -- making the content management tools more useful, especially for media companies claiming and complaining that videos uploaded by YouTube members generate lots of views.
"Some partners have millions of claims in the system," says David King, product manager of Content ID at Google. "From a marketing and business intelligence perspective, we needed to find a better way for them to understand their audience."
Aside from tracking the blogs where the videos appear, media companies now know the keyword terms that people search on to find the videos, and the sites that link back to videos that YouTube members upload. This allows media companies to understand their audience -- people who become passionate about a subject and take time to upload and distribute a video.
And this also provides fodder to design new distribution strategies after realizing that people uploading the videos have different ideas on distributing content than executives at major music labels, broadcasters and movie studio had thought.
A feature called Hot Spots identifies the hottest parts people rewind to within a video. It also gives media companies the exact location when viewers close the clip and lose interest. The feature enables copyright owners to understand why YouTube members edited, mashed-up and uploaded the videos in the way they did.
Sony Music used Content ID to claim a user-generated wedding video featuring a Chris Brown song. "JK Wedding Entrance Dance" became the music label's eighth-most-popular video on YouTube. While Sony learned about the demographics from their own upload, it also analyzed the wedding video to determine whether the demographics differed and sparked new ideas for distribution, sales and marketing that were not previously considered.
All major labels, broadcasters and studios in the United States rely on Content ID to protect copyrighted content. In fact, more than 1,000 companies worldwide tap into the technology. Rather than copyright holders turning their back on fans, media companies have begun to make money on consumers who take time to share their passions.