9 YouTube stats to inform your marketing strategy in 2019

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When YouTube first arrived in 2005, few likely had any idea how valuable it would become.

The first video, “Me at the Zoo,” launched on April 23, 2005, and the first ads followed two years later. By 2010, YouTube was generating more than two billion views each day.

As video has continued to grow as one of the most compelling channels for marketing and entertainment, YouTube has remained at the forefront.

By becoming familiar with some of the latest YouTube statistics, you’ll help ensure your marketing strategy for video content is on a path to success.

1.     There are 1.9 billion active users on YouTube

Currently, there are 1.9 billion active monthly users logging into YouTube. That’s one-third of all the people online and a heck of a lot of opportunity for any business.

YouTube’s popularity spans 91 countries and 80 different languages, covering about 95% of the global online population.

YouTube reaches more 18-49-year-olds on mobile alone than any cable TV network or broadcast.

As YouTube stats for marketers go, that’s great insight into where you could be spending your ad budget, or at the very least maintaining an active presence through video content of your own.

2.     YouTube is the second-most visited site in the world

According to Alexa rankings of the top 500 sites on the web, YouTube is second only to its parent company, Google, which is perhaps not surprising, but even more impressive when you consider the fact that it’s beating out Facebook, top Chinese search engine Baidu and Wikipedia, just to name a few.

Cisco predicted that video will make up 82% of global internet traffic by 2022, and with the year fast approaching, YouTube is one of the forces that certainly appears positioned to make it a reality.

Additionally, Google has revealed that YouTube users often search for ‘how to’ videos and other ‘search engine-like’ queries. This type of revealing user insight also makes YouTube a valuable source of social listening data that can help you pinpoint your audiences’ specific interests and needs.

3.     Millennials prefer YouTube over TV

According to a 2016 study released by Comscore and YouTube, 35% of the 2,940 respondents selected YouTube as their “one preferred provider,” while just 19% chose TV.

Additionally, a 2015 Forrester Research forecast predicted that by 2025, half of all TV viewers under the age of 32 will not subscribe to a traditional pay TV service.

Users are watching more than one billion hours of YouTube videos each day, with over half of those views coming from mobile devices at upwards of an hour each day.

In 2018, YouTube viewership grew by its fastest rate in recent years, increasing by 60% year-over-year. Outside of TV, YouTube also holds the edge when it comes to other social and streaming competition. There are more videos on YouTube than Facebook video and Netflix combined and YouTube videos earn more valuable attention, too.

A study using eye-tracking technology found that YouTube ads hold visual attention 62% of the time, compared to 45% of TV ads.

4.     Mobile devices dominate YouTube views, but TV is gaining

Just like general online search trends, YouTube usage predominantly happens on a mobile device, with that total now amounting to more than 70% of all watch time. On top of that, the rise of video content through other networks’ newer features like IGTV and Facebook Live has led to an overall increase in mobile video engagement. While some of these formats favor a vertical viewing aspect ratio, seven out of 10 YouTube users prefer horizontal viewing on their phones.

However, with advancements in technology and ever-growing popularity in online streaming devices like Apple TV and Roku, there have long been other ways to access YouTube outside of a computer and phone.

According to a 2017 YouTube Earnings Call, users watched more than 100 million hours of YouTube by way of their living room television, up 70% from the year prior. Additionally, it also was noted that YouTube TV covered two-thirds of U.S. households as of Q3 2017, when it had only just launched in February of that year.

5.     The average length of a first-page video is 14 minutes and 50 seconds

Backlinko shared findings from a study in which 1.3 million YouTube videos were analyzed to identify various ranking factors potentially impacting YouTube SEO. Among one of the most actionable findings for marketers was the discovery that long-form videos, specifically those clocking in at 14 minutes and 50 seconds, outperformed their shorter counterparts.

This hasn’t necessarily been a well-kept secret, though, as in 2012 YouTube unveiled a focus on “watch time,” while its parent company, Google, has held a patent for “Watch Time Based Ranking” since 2013.

Among other interesting YouTube stats that emerged from the Backlinko study were that 68% of the videos included in the study were in HD, likes were significantly correlated with better rankings, and comment count proved to be a strong factor in a video’s ranking.

Video comments YouTube ranking graph

6.     Paid YouTube mobile ads are more likely to receive attention than TV ads

A mobile ad on YouTube will attract your customer’s attention 83% of the time. That’s even more impressive when you consider that TV ads only get the same level of attention 45% of the time. The same study also found that YouTube’s TrueView ads worked in synergy with TV ads to improve brand metrics like ad recall.

TrueView in-stream ads can be highly targeted, and Google found that relevant ads get 3 times more attention than the average video ad. This means that even though users can opt to skip these ads, catering to your audience with an attention-grabbing opening is likely to keep them viewing. What’s more, viewers who do watch an ad to completion are 23 times more likely to convert, subscribe to a channel, or share a video.

This means that if you strategically approach your video content, the outcomes could be phenomenal. When brands use the TrueView ad solution, they see their views of previous content increase by up to 500%.

Just remember that your YouTube ads will need to be robust–95% of YouTube ads are audible, compared to only 15% of Facebook ads. In other words, it’s not just about making your ads look good–it’s about making them sound right too. Google suggests that when ads are viewable and audible at the same time, they increase brand awareness and recall.

7. 46% of B2B buyers purchase something after watching video

A lot of companies assume that YouTube is strictly a B2C channel.

Currently, Smart Insights and Clutch rank YouTube as the 4th most valuable social channel for B2B marketers. YouTube stats for marketers don’t just apply to the B2C industry. The diversity of YouTube demographics extends to the B2B world too.

The Value of Social Media Platforms: B2C vs B2B

Past studies from the International Data Group state that 46% of B2B tech buyers purchase products after viewing videos. If you show a client how well your service works through video, then they’re more likely to make an informed investment in your offering.

To back those stats up, Forbes also previously reported that around 75% of Fortune 500 executives turn to YouTube to help them make more educated decisions.

8. There are more than 50 million content creators on YouTube

It’s clear that if you are thinking of running your own YouTube campaign, you will have some competition. There are about 50 million active content creators on the platform today. The content creator base on YouTube is the biggest in the world, with some people earning five or six figures a year.

The number of channels on YouTube with more than 1 million subscribers also doubled in 2018–advertising the ongoing popularity of these creators and their consistent output of content that keeps viewers coming back.

This means that YouTube is an ideal network to include in any influencer marketing strategy you’re planning across social media. Individual creators, many of whom are also influencers, drive about 92% of the total views on sponsored videos on YouTube. Partnering with the right people could be the best way to make sure that your content gets in front of the right people, regardless of whether you’re a B2B or B2C brand.

9. Marketers are increasingly focused on YouTube ads

These days, no-one can afford to underestimate the power of video, and YouTube is a valuable platform for kicking off any video ad strategy. According to Animoto, 93% of marketers say they have landed a new customer thanks to social video in 2018.

Brands of all sizes and backgrounds are beginning to embrace YouTube as a powerful way of telling their story through a popular channel. As an example of this volume, 4,680 brands sponsored 8,964 videos just during the week of September 16th, 2018. In 2018, video on YouTube generated around $3.36 billion in ad revenues.

Marketers’ belief in the power of YouTube ads appears to be proven out by consumer behavior. Think with Google suggests that 90% of people find new products and brands through YouTube. Additionally, around half of all shoppers use video to help them make a purchasing decision, showing the influence of video throughout the purchase funnel.

Making the most of these YouTube stats

For marketers, the YouTube statistics covered here demonstrate how valuable the channel is. After 14 years, the platform is one of the most valuable in the world, for B2B and B2C companies alike. These stats clue you in on some of the most opportune ways that you can integrate YouTube video into your overall social strategy.

What kind of an approach are you bringing to your YouTube or video strategy? Let us know on Twitter @SproutSocial!

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