Why Luxury Brands Should Be On YouTube in 2022

Luxury brands and glossy magazines have historically been the perfect pair. When the web took over analog content, many luxury brands did what they do best, they bought against that luxury ad inventory online. Now luxury brands own the lion’s share of a few key publications’ digital inventory, as well as the YouTube and programmatic inventory. This strategy helps retain control and ensure safety, relevancy, and audience targeting when it comes to luxury ads. This in turn limits the risk inherent across the web and in particular, on user generated content platforms. 

The challenge with this content strategy, especially on YouTube, is that it can restrict scale and limit growth. That also limits new customer acquisition by missing out on key audiences that engage with a multitude of content. So how can you buy in premium environments on YouTube for luxury brands without sacrificing scale? By being selective, but not overly restrictive in your approach. 

1. Premium Environments & Premium Scale

Up to 27% of YouTube content is broadcast quality. When you think about how vast a platform YouTube is, the number seems small, but it actually reflects millions of videos and billions of views. With the right strategy, it’s possible to run in premium environments and limit non broadcast quality inventory. And within your content targeting strategy, it is important to be prescriptive about the type of content you want to run ads against. YouTube is not a one-size-fits-all platform for advertisements, and luxury brands should expect a level of customization and contextual targeting that matches their brand voice and ethos. 

Channels like Beauty Insider and the Luxury Travel Expert are examples of the type of content that we have suggested certain luxury brands include in their targeting strategies. Channels like these make it possible to run ads on content which reflects a specific image of a luxury fashion, automotive, alcohol or beauty brand.

2. Luxury Consumers Are on Digital

Between 20 and 30% of luxury sales are generated by consumers making luxury purchases outside their home countries.  Restricted tourism, as well as cancellations of fashion weeks and trade shows, impacted luxury brands’ ability to market their brands in the same way.

Meanwhile, watch time on YouTube increased by 80%. And while people watch more, they also are influenced by digital, with more than three-quarters of all luxury brand purchases influenced by digital touchpoints like Google and YouTube. In fact, 48% of affluent consumers use Google to learn about products, and over 40% of shoppers say that they’ve purchased products they’ve seen on YouTube.

3. YouTube is Tailored for Luxury Brand Experiences

The pros of working with YouTube are significant: scale and eyeballs. The challenge with a user generated content platform is that it is an ever evolving sea of content, with 500 hours uploaded every minute. This means that proactive content selection and content targeting is important, particularly for luxury brands. 

Strategy is Key

If a brand is thoughtful about their content strategy, YouTube can be an awesome platform for delivering messages by running exclusively against premium content.  Without a strategy for proactive contextual alignment, we’ve seen luxury brands running up to 23% of their media spend on content that’s not right for their brand, reducing efficiency and potentially opening up risk.

An example of this strategy? Video-gaming channels, while very popular, are not brand suitable for a lot of luxury brands.

CTV Market and Ads

Another benefit of YouTube is the platform’s dominance of the connected TV market. It’s the second largest app for time spent on CTV, and luxury brands are perfect for a bigger screen. 

According to research by Google, CTV ads can drive up to 47% lift in ad recall vs other formats. In a recent campaign we ran on YouTube via CTV, we saw a 97% video-completion rate, which is 10% higher than Google benchmarks for the average video-completion rate.

The Results: Luxury Success with Channel Factory

Channel Factory has worked with many premium and luxury brands from beauty to autos to fashion. We have leveraged our premium content targeting solution to find top creators and videos on YouTube which tastemakers, trendsetters and high net worth individuals are watching and engaging with. 

Through constant optimization of these targeting strategies, we have been able to increase quality scale over time while delivering against the right content for the luxury brand and beating Google click through rates, view through rates, and video completion benchmarks.

YouTube is the ideal destination for premium content and luxury brand experiences. If luxury brands team up with the right partner, they can reduce media waste against the wrong content, and deliver on their KPIs (such as view-through rate and click-through rate) against their audiences.

How to Drive Online Conversions with Trueview for Action

YouTube’s TrueView for Action (now evolving into “Video Action”) campaigns are known for helping to drive down funnel action. YouTube audiences are uniquely engaged and attentive. According to Google, consumers are 2X more likely to pay attention to ads on YouTube vs. on other social media platforms,1 and users are 3X more likely to pay attention to online ads vs. ads on TV.2

What’s even more interesting, YouTube can drives purchase decisions for consumers. Over 40% of global shoppers say they’ve purchased products they discovered on YouTube or from YouTube creators.3 And it all happens at scale, with over 2 billion monthly logged-in users on YouTube.

What does Youtube Trueview for Action do?

YouTube released its  TrueView for Action tool to help brands reach customers in the lower segment of the marketing funnel. It includes audiences, extensions, measurements, and smart bidding machine learning which helps drive ad conversions. 

86% of consumers use Google to search for ideas about what product to buy. YouTube’s TrueView for Action tool helps you grow your business by allowing you to reach audiences who have been searching Google for what you offer.4  Viewers see ads that promote your business with a way for them to take immediate action, and when compared with standard TrueView the results are significant. In some case studies, we’ve seen a 200% increase in conversions and reduced CPA cost vs standard TrueView.5

86% of people use Google to search for ideas about what product to buy. YouTube’s TrueView for Action helps you grow your business by allowing you to reach audiences who have been searching Google for what you offer.4 Viewers see ads which promote your business with a way for them to take immediate action, and when compared with standard TrueView the results are significant. In some case studies, we’ve seen a 200% increase in conversions and reduced CPA cost vs standard TrueView.5

How Does True View for ActionIt Work?

Advertisers can use a variety of different Google property audience types to reach customers based on action, intent, and interest. This is made possible by tracking and consulting the digital marketing ecosystem as well as the goals for brand perception

High Intent Audiences

  • Custom Intent: audiences created from your already-existing Google Search Keywords]
  • Remarketing: go after audiences who have already interacted with your brand ads across Google properties
  • Customer Match: audiences similar to customer contact information imported from your brand CRM.

Mid-Funnel Audiences

  • Similar Audience: reach new audiences who are similar to your users in your remarketing list and showcase similar buying behavior.
  • Life Events: audiences on the cusp of major life events like getting married, graduating college, or moving
  • In-Market: reach people who are actively researching and intending to buy products or services you offer – including those thinking of buying from your competitors
  • Affinities: reach people based on a holistic picture of their lifestyles, interests, and needs.
  • It’s smart because even the strongest search campaigns miss undecided shoppers

It’s smart because even the strongest search campaigns miss undecided shoppers

Brands can layer these audience targeting options with custom inclusion lists that allow them to run in brand-suitable environments contextually aligned with their brand, as well as find high intent consumers.

Pairing these audience approaches can drive effective lower funnel results. Google’s own research shows that TrueView for action campaigns using Custom intent generates 30% higher conversion rates.

How to Use Trueview?

A few top tips on how to use trueview for a for creative approaches that workworks best for TrueView for Action ad campaigns:

  1. Introduce the brand/product early and as a solution to a problem
  2. Show & tell how the brand works and what makes it great
  3. Include a clear call to actioncall-to-action or offer
  4. Use both sight and sound because YouTube ads are 95% viewable & 95% audible.
  5. Build for small screens by using close framing, big text, and bright footage to stand out

Company Examples 

Airbnb wanted to get people thinking about and booking their 5 million listings in 81,000 cities around the world, especially in markets where they face stiff competition. 

They used YouTube for action to drive a 14% increase in bookings, proving a brand campaign can impact sales, as well as a 142% increase in branded search terms.

  • Their creative approach: Airbnb developed highly tailored creative using Affinity Audiences to align with video content people were likely to watch. For example, if someone was about to watch a video related to water sports, they would see the ad featuring a host with a passion for surfing.
  • Their Targeting approach: Airbnb used TrueView for Action’s Smart Bidding and Google’s Consumer Patterns targeting to under-stand where to find audiences most likely to consider their hosts’ properties. They also tested different consumer engagements along the way to understand and optimize their customer’s journey.

What this really means

TrueView for Action enables brands to convert intent into action. In conjunction with a strong brand image and plan it can help you meet your goals for reach and conversion. To learn more about YouTube, check out our Ultimate Guide to YouTube and schedule a consultation to learn more about the services from Channel Factory to get your brand in front of the right people. .


1: Google/Ipsos, Video Mobile Diary, US, 2017, n of 4,381 (saw ads occasions). Online video includes video platforms such as YouTube & Hulu, social platforms such as Facebook & Snapchat and TV Full Episode Players like NBC.com.

2: Nielsen Consumer Neuroscience, Video Ad Cross-Platform Biometrics Research commissioned by Google. Conducted in the US using 8 advertisements, 4 platforms and 400 participants, 18-35 year olds, Nielsen CNS Lab, Boston, US 2016

3: Google/Ipsos, Global (U.S., CA, BR, U.K., DE, FR, JP, IN, KR, AU), “How People Shop with YouTube” Study, 18–64-year-olds who go online at least monthly and have purchased something in the last year, n=24,017, July 2018.   

4: Google Internal Data, 2020

5: Google Internal Data, 2020