It was announced by YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki during the IAB MIXX Conference at Advertising Week, that starting this Autumn, YouTube videos will now have advertisements on them tailored to the video you are watching. If you are watching a tutorial on how to apply makeup for instance, the makeup used in the video will have quick links to buy from the video. This is a nightmare if you're an impulse buyer, but is YouTube's response to the sheer number of people who use YouTube for information rather than information- as addictive as watching videos of bears waving are, information to be gained on YouTube is vast- from videos titled 'DIY how to fix dents in your car' to reviews on most products on the market. If you're going to buy a phone, a camera, a laptop- the list is endless, you may turn to YouTube to see what other people- tech wizzes in particular, think of the product before you buy it, their opinion appears to matter- a video titled 'Apple iPhone 6+ Review!' for instance, has 1,642,491 views at the time I'm writing this.
Diya Jolly, YouTube's head of advertising, has picked up on the trend, saying, "Over the last couple of years, we've discovered that there's a lot of content on YouTube that actually is things like how-to videos, reviews, tutorials- things that people look at to research things to buy." The theory is that the time will be shortened between when a viewer sees the product used, sees the advertisement, and then clicks through to purchase said item. The shortend time span, in theory, encourages higher sales as it directly places the customer in the line of sale. It also helps the retailer as they are able to target those who are interested in their products, and especially at the exact time they hold their interest, instead of paying for ad campaigns for people who hold no interest in their product. Jolly went on to say, "Advertisers can reach users at the point where it benefits the user the most- when they're looking for something. And it will benefit advertisers as well, because they're getting information in front of users when they really want it."
It is unclear as of yet how intrustive the adverts will be, the banner type adverts shown on Facebook have been relatively unpopular in the past, but with 'buy' buttons now on Instagram, Google and Pinterest, it was only a matter of time before YouTube jumped on the bandwagon and joined the others in maximising their attractiveness to brands spending on ads. It is said that, on videos the user has constented, an icon will be in the top upper corner where viewers can click to see where the products mentioned are from, or the price point of said item.
Photo from iDigitalTimes article found here
There are obvious pros to the new step YouTube are taking; it will be easier to find out where items are from, and will give businesses a new area to explore with their advertising campaigns, however there are some drawbacks. Those putting out the adverts will have to pay a pricetag for the adverts, it seems to be similar to the Google Adwords pay per click, and it has been reported by experts on the BBC, that marketers will be charged for their advert clicks even if they are being clicked by 'bots' and therefore are fake views. According to the report, "Google publicly counted only 25 of the 150 fake views as real. But its monetised view counter waved through 91." Another con is for consumers wallets- viewers will search for videos they are interested in, however might not be interested in buying right now, putting an effective 'buy' button on the videos increases their risk of temptation- on the other hand, this will be great for the business who have placed the ad there!