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YouTube vs. Television: How Marketers Win With Digital Videos

The average consumer watches nearly an hour and 45 minutes of digital video content daily. That’s a lot of videos!

According to one study, 66% of people cite videos as their primary source of information, and industry research reveals their strong influence on consumer purchasing decisions

For businesses to benefit from video content, they should meet customers where they are, which starts with understanding how video consumption has shifted over the years. While TV was once at the forefront, the internet has transformed the course of video advertising by introducing streaming platforms like YouTube. 

Let’s dive into this story further.

YouTube vs. Television: A Brief Review

Television advertising started in the early 1940s. Through TV advertising, businesses could promote their products and services by placing advertisements between TV programming schedules. As television technology advanced, gaining wider distribution and better graphics, television advertising quickly became a profitable industry.

However, the birth of the internet and the launch of video streaming platforms like YouTube revolutionized the video advertising industry and changed the future of television forever

Aside from creating a new avenue for businesses to promote their products and services, it provided viewers with an entirely new video consumption experience. By enabling viewers to watch on demand and allowing them to access media conveniently through their smartphones, YouTube overcame the limitations of traditional television. 

As of 2022, YouTube has over 2.1 billion monthly active users and over one billion hours of daily viewership, while television viewership continues to decline

YouTube’s success shows businesses how they might leverage this powerful platform to reach their markets. 

YouTube vs. Television in Advertising: Why YouTube Wins

YouTube’s popularity challenges business norms, causing organizations to rethink their current marketing strategies. 

While TV has served brands well in the past, consumers are increasingly shifting to digital channels

Here are the top reasons companies should incorporate YouTube into their advertising efforts. 

1. YouTube Has Wider Reach Than TV Ads

YouTube reaches more 18-49-year-olds than any broadcast, network, or cable platform. In the US alone, over 62% of YouTube users access the site daily, amounting to more than 122 million people daily. 

Businesses looking to do more video advertising don’t need to worry about how to increase viewership on YouTube, as the platform gives them access to a fanbase that collectively watches around 250 million hours of video content every day. On average, around 5 billion YouTube videos are watched each day. The platform also has a high retention rate, as the average YouTube session on mobile lasts 40 minutes

2. YouTube Ads Costs Less Than TV Ads

Television advertising is an expensive marketing endeavor. Despite its cost, industry studies suggest that there is no significant return on investment for TV ads. Only big brands with adequate budgets can advertise on television, especially during peak view times.  

The internet leveled the way for businesses, allowing them to reach their market without breaking the bank. YouTube advertising allows companies to reach their target audience without a minimum investment. With YouTube Ads, you pay per view. This reduces digital advertising waste and helps maximize your marketing budget. 

3. YouTube Ads Are More Effective

YouTube advertisements are also effective. A staggering 70% of consumers report buying a product after seeing it in a YouTube ad, and the platform’s mobile advertising is 84% more likely to hold viewers’ attention than TV advertising.

4. YouTube Allows for Precise Targeting

YouTube can provide more precise targeting options than TV, which helps to ensure advertisers reach the right buyer persona. 

YouTube allows businesses to set and tweak the following targeting options: 

  • Topics: You can target audiences based on specific YouTube topics. 
  • Demographics: Reach people based on age, gender, income, or parental status.
  • Keywords: Target customers based on specific keywords or phrases used in a YouTube video. 
  • Interests: Advertise to customers based on their interests in specific topics. 
  • Placements: Businesses can place their ads on certain channels, videos, or websites. 
  • Remarketing: Target people based on past interactions with channels, videos, and websites. 

You can use a combination of these methods to shape the relevance of your target audience and select specific locations where your ads will be shown. Partnering with experts like Channel Factory can help businesses further maximize their investment and ensure brand suitability. 

5. YouTube Ads Are Easy to Track & Measure

While TV can offer reach estimates, marketers often struggle to calculate an actual return on investment without metric reports. YouTube provides businesses with real-time analytics about their ads. 

Some important KPIs YouTube provides include: 

  • Views
  • View rates
  • Clicks
  • Watch times
  • The average cost per view
  • And more

Evaluating these KPIs allows you to gauge the effectiveness of your ads, which enables you to make the adjustments needed to improve underperforming advertisements. It also uncovers the key information about your ad viewers and provides detailed information about your reach. 

6. YouTube Offers Several Ad Formats 

Depending on your business goals and target audience, you can select from YouTube’s extensive list of ad formats. 

Some of the ad formats on the platform are: 

Connected TV Offers More Options for Advertisers

While YouTube has numerous advantages over television for advertisers, connected TV (CTV) offers new advertising opportunities. In general, CTVs are internet-connected television sets that are used to watch streaming media. The main devices that allow you to watch streaming video on your television include smart TVs, set-top boxes, TV sticks, and gaming consoles.

CTV services allow viewers to see their favorite programs outside of normal TV providers. This trend allows advertisers to target their audience with CTV ads during shows provided by top networks.

CTV ads resemble linear TV commercials, but they’re purchased, sold, or delivered differently.

With traditional TV advertising, advertisers buy TV ads for certain airtimes, channels, and shows. CTV ads aren’t based on airtimes or channels. They are presented one at a time to each viewer. Therefore, you don’t have to guess which shows your target viewers like. Using demographic and behavioral data, you can create a target audience.

Leverage YouTube Advertising for Business Success 

After reading about YouTube vs. television, your next query might be how to get advertising on YouTube. YouTube advertising is straightforward if you know what you’re doing, which is why partnering with Channel Factory is a great investment. 

Channel Factory helps you create optimized advertising campaigns that maximize your ROI, reach brand-suitable audiences, and drive performance. 

Reach out today to get started!