YouTube launched the Cost-Per-Hour Masthead on Wednesday as a way for brands to buy the platform’s most prominent placement during a time when multiple screens are a way to entertain viewers.
The masthead, piloted in fourth-quarter 2022, aims to reach viewers in moments such as live sporting events that are some of the biggest activation opportunities of the year.
Today, in the U.S., for example, brands are gearing up for the Super Bowl. But advertising can become crowded during those times, creating a need to go beyond traditional means and explore more creative advertising experiences.
“It’s about big cultural moments,” said Kristin O’Hara, vice president agency and brand solutions at Google, during a call with reporters. “People want to watch what they want when they want to watch it.”
O’Hara said consumer viewing behavior has changed in the past couple of years, citing Nielsen numbers that estimate time spent streaming is up 46%, and linear viewership is on the decline.
YouTube reached 77% of adults with a Super Bowl ad last year vs 72% on television, according to YouTube, citing Comscore data.
The Cost-Per-Hour Masthead that YouTube introduced today aims to enable brands like Turbo Tax and the National Football League (NFL) to manage those moments throughout the year -- not just during the Super Bowl.
While the Super Bowl may be the most pivotal moment when people look forward to seeing and seeking out ads, the Cost-Per-Hour model is aimed at providing an in-the-moment reach throughout the year.
Cathleen Ryan, senior vice president of marketing at Turbo Tax -- a brand synonymous with do-it-yourself software -- provided an example during a video Q&A with reporters.
Turbo Tax focuses on Super Bowl worthiness because it’s a lean-in message, Ryan said, so the calculations are a bit different.
This year’s Super Bowl ad message -- Come to Turbo Tax and don’t do your taxes -- focuses on emotions that include title cards and music.
The message is about Turbo Tax providing experts and services -- highlighting the feeling consumers can gain by allowing someone else to do their taxes at Turbo Tax.
“The brand and service are so much more than DIY,” Ryan said during a video call with reporters. Consumers just didn’t hear the message because the company is known as a DIY software, she added.
Ryan said YouTube has a plethora of media to offer brands. "We think about the types of content and interactivity, so we’re starting to explore longer-form custom content from our own studios to educate consumers," she said.
Tax moments happen throughout the year, although tax filing only happens once a year for most people, Ryan said.
The company uses standard campaign tracking, but also analyzes a host of metrics for other tracking, such as in the moment -- which YouTube now offers, as well as post-campaign, Ryan said.
“I am notorious for scouring social to see how consumers take our message,” she added.
Blake Stuchin, vice president and head of digital media business development at the NFL, provided another example. Although the brand is 103 years old, he said: “We hope to feel as dynamic and fresh as ever.”
Stuchin said the NFL wants “every day to be a football day. It starts with having big event like the Super Bowl and NFL scouting” and getting into next season.
The NFL launched on YouTube eight years ago, and the organization has continually refined what that looks like.
In the past 12 months, the NFL has seen “tremendous growth in YouTube Shorts,” but there might also be everyday programming. “We’re also seeing tremendous growth in connected devices,” he said.
"YouTube reached 77% of adults with a Super Bowl ad last year vs 72% on television, according to Comscore." Over what period of time would it take an advertiser to reach 77% of adults with that same ad? Believe we need some context here to evaluate the efficacy of that comparison.
Some crazy numbers---or comparisons---- floating around here. According to Nielsen last year's Super Bowl "reached" about a third of adults living in TV-owning homes per commercial--minute via network TV---aka "linear TV" ----and ovbiously not all of these watched an average commercial.( I don't have the exact numbers so this is an approximation ) So is Comscore saying that it found that an average commercial minute on last year's Super Bowl actually "reached" more than double that percentage?Wow? Is this "evidence" that Nielsen is "wrong". I doubt that and, by the way, would someone at Comscore please confirm that 72% figure---or clarify. Just curious.
Secondly, if Comscore is reporting that 77% of all adults use YouTube ---which I have no problem with-----is this an average minute figure---I douubt that---or is it the "audience" of an average ad message "exposure" on YouTube---I really doubt that---or is it a cummulative figure of all YouTube activity for a week or a month?---More likely. In which case comparing such a stat to "linear TV"s average commercial minute Super Bowl "audience" is totally bogus.