The Polar Report

The Polar Report: Industry Insights #20

August 1, 2023

Welcome to The Polar Report, a curated view of what’s happening in the world of Digital Monetisation, Audience Development and Measurement. This week we explore the benefits of YouTube as a TV platform for food and beverage brands, the recent price increase for YouTube's premium offerings, TikTok's new text and e-commerce features in the social media meta battle, and YouTube Shorts' ad measurement tools supported by IAS and DV.


Why Food and Beverage Brands Should Embrace YouTube as a TV Platform

YouTube's transformation into a dominant CTV platform is evident, as 48% of advertisers' upfront ad spend is now directed towards it. Food and beverage brands can leverage this platform's precise targeting, interactive features, and cost-effectiveness to effectively engage with their target audiences. Unlike traditional TV, YouTube's programmatic marketplace enables advertisers to reach specific demographics and behaviours with precision, while interactive elements encourage user engagement and drive traffic to websites. 

The lower cost of advertising on YouTube CTV compared to premium video-on-demand services makes it accessible to both big brands and smaller players in the food and beverage industry. Embracing YouTube CTV provides an excellent opportunity for brands to showcase products, boost brand awareness, and connect with consumers on a massive scale. By harnessing YouTube's extensive reach and engaging features, food and beverage brands can create compelling ad campaigns that deliver impressive results.

With the increasing popularity of premium TV content like Hell's Kitchen and MasterChef on YouTube, food and beverage brands have a significant opportunity to tap into this engaged audience and advertise effectively. Expect to see more brands and shows from the industry streaming and advertising on YouTube to leverage its vast reach.

Full Article on AdWeek

Audience Development

Price Increase for YouTube's Premium Offerings

YouTube is planning to increase the prices of its YouTube Premium and YouTube Music Premium subscription plans in the US. The YouTube Premium plan will rise from $11.99 to $13.99 per month, while the YouTube Music Premium plan will increase from $9.99 to $10.99 per month. This marks the first price increase for US subscribers since the launch of the YouTube Premium package in 2018.

The company assures subscribers that they will receive an email notification at least 30 days before the price increases take effect, giving them ample time to adjust. Customers will be charged the new cost in their next billing cycle. Additionally, long-term members who subscribed five years ago or through Google Play will enjoy an extra three months at their current plan cost.

YouTube justifies the price increase by stating that it reflects the value of YouTube Premium, which offers ad-free viewing, background and offline play, and uninterrupted access to over 100 million songs through the YouTube Music app. While the price hike is currently limited to the US, it is expected that other major markets like Canada, the UK, and Europe may see similar increases in the future as YouTube continually evaluates pricing based on changing conditions worldwide.

As of 2023, there are 80 million YouTube Premium subscribers worldwide, all experiencing ad-free YouTube, but are the benefits of the subscription worth the $2 price increase? By dropping their premium subscription, viewers will likely be exposed to more ads, which could be an opportunity for advertisers. Only time will tell what impact this price increase will have on YouTube and its premium community.

Full Article on Digital TV Europe

TikTok Unveils New Text and E-Commerce Features in the Ongoing Social Media Battle

TikTok has announced a new text-only feature, bringing it into competition with other platforms like X, formerly known as Twitter, and Threads. In response, Elon Musk has rebranded his company, X, as an "everything app," aiming to expand beyond its original focus. Similarly, Meta-owned Threads app is also contending to become an all-encompassing platform. 

Social media companies are diversifying their offerings to remain competitive. TikTok recently launched a music streaming service and is planning to introduce an e-commerce platform in the US, selling goods made in China. This constant evolution of social media platforms can be perplexing for users, leaving some to question if these companies should stick to their core strengths.

While some companies may succeed in branching out, others may find that users prefer specialised platforms for specific purposes. As social media companies navigate this ever-changing landscape, they will need to strike a balance between expansion and maintaining user engagement. 

We have seen the success of social media brands branching out with the likes of YouTube TV and Shorts, and it seems as though TikTok is trying to cater to all with their successful UK shopping expansion and integration of longer-form content, along with the option for a clear display to really feel like you are watching the content with no distractions from the UI. TikTok allows users to seamlessly scroll between short-form content and longer-form content that is previously only found on YouTube; should this be a cause for concern for YouTube? With text-based social media platforms, X and Threads, taking the spotlight in the world of internet news, is now the correct time for TikTok to try and bring attention to themselves, or should they wait for the hype to settle down?

Full Article on SiliconAngle


YouTube Shorts Gains IAS and DV Support for Ad Measurement Tools

YouTube Shorts, the short-form video experience offered by Google, has joined forces with Integral Ad Science (IAS) and DoubleVerify (DV) to enhance its services for advertisers. IAS now offers viewability and invalid traffic measurement for YouTube Shorts, ensuring that ads reach real users. With YouTube Shorts boasting an impressive reach of 1.5 billion logged-in monthly users and 50 billion daily views, this move provides advertisers with valuable insights into their campaign performance.

Starting in July 2023, advertisers and agencies will have the option to utilise third-party measurement for independent viewability and invalid traffic measurement for Video View and Video Reach campaigns on YouTube Shorts. This advancement empowers advertisers to optimise their campaigns based on accurate data, driving better results and increasing audience engagement.

DoubleVerify has also expanded its quality solutions with Google's Ads Data Hub for Measurement Partners, enabling advertisers to maximise performance on YouTube Shorts, Masthead, and In-feed Video formats. By utilising DV technology, advertisers can ensure that their video ads are viewable and protected from fraudulent or invalid traffic, reinforcing the effectiveness of their advertising efforts on the platform. These collaborations reflect Google's commitment to transparency and empowering advertisers with valuable insights to achieve greater success on YouTube Shorts.

Analytics are imperative for success on social media channels, and with YouTube Shorts set to improve its current analytics offerings, content creators and media companies, including those with longer-form content, have an invaluable chance to capitalise on the short-form video trend. By repurposing content into engaging clips and trailers, they can attract viewers to explore their channels for full episodes. Embracing this platform and utilising in-app analytics empowers them to make data-driven decisions, maximise engagement, and reach wider audiences in the ever-evolving digital media landscape, where viewers' attention spans are shrinking and short-form videos are gaining dominance.

Full Article on Media Post