YouTube’s premium subscription service is almost ready to go

28 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Ad-Free YouTube May Launch Next Month.

We have been hearing about YouTube’s potential plans to put a subscription option in place for months now but it looks like it will finally arrive as soon as next month. Today Google announced moves further into Facebook-style targeting territory, with a new product called Customer Match that will let advertisers upload lists of emails and match them to signed-in Google users on Gmail, Search and YouTube.

Google’s video website already sent out emails to content owners, asking them to agree to the terms for a “new ads-free version of YouTube” by October 22nd. According to new reports, Google is planning to launch paid subscriptions at the end of October, with an email being sent to current YouTube partners stating that they need to sign up by the 22nd of October, or they may face some issues. In a blog post, the company’s senior vice president for advertising and commerce, Sridhar Ramaswamy, writes that the new Customer Match feature allows advertisers to address their highest-value customers on Google Search, YouTube and Gmail when it matters most.

Just like earlier reports revealed, if providers refuse to get on board, their catalogues will “no longer be available for public display or monetization in the United States.” The service won’t just flush out ads from videos, though: Recode says the company’s $10-a-month offering also comes bundled with Music Key, the website’s music streaming product that features offline access, background playback and more. Meanwhile, Facebook has announced a new service that itself is competitive with yet another platform: Twitter, and specifically in the area of nabbing more TV ad dollars. For example, a travel brand’s rewards programme members who search for a flight on Google.com will see relevant ads at the top of the search results. The social network will be working with Nielsen on a new metric and ad buying option to let advertisers more closely link their TV ad spend with Facebook video spend. So it’s unclear how the company will make money from the twofer, especially since it reportedly had trouble locking down deals for its ads-free model earlier this year.

In an example given by Sridhar Ramaswamy, SVP of Ads and Commerce at Google, a travel brand can upload the names of people in its rewards program, who will then be served ads from that travel brand the next time they are searching a relevant term. On top of this, Google will also be giving advertisers the ability to use that same data to find similar audiences — that is, signed-in users who may not be on your own lists but match profiles of those who are and are therefore more likely to be interested in your products. And when those members are watching their favourite videos on YouTube or catching up on Gmail, you can show ads that inspire them to plan their next trip. If you think all of this sounds familiar, it’s because it is: Facebook has been letting advertisers run similar styles of campaigns based around customer databases for years already. Google does have an event planned for the 29th of September where we think the new Nexus handsets will be launched, so who knows, maybe we will get some updates about YouTube then as well.

Advertisers give Google their desired cost-per-install and the company’s systems optimise their campaigns using dynamic learning to maximize app install volume at the target costs. Regulatory scrutiny seems to be one key reason highlighted by Digiday, which had reported that targeting plans were in the works before Google made the news official: the search giant has been happy to let others take the lead on this kind of ad tech first because then Google appears as the competitor when it enters the market.

You’ll get to keep your current user name (as long as it doesn’t contain invalid characters, in which case you’ll have to go through a few extra steps to make the transfer), and all your old comments will eventually (not immediately) migrate with you. It tests different version of the ad text and app images in each network to determine the highest-performing variations so that only the best ads appear.

There could be other reasons, too: You could also argue that Google has been so successful with its core search products that the idea of adding new features may have been put on the backburner. From Sunday Google also announced had switched on “Universal App Campaigns,” which allow advertisers to run app install ads across Google Search, Google Play, YouTube, and the Google Display Network. The push from the wider market, and competition from Facebook, it could be argued, may also be behind the new Android app promotion tools that Google is also unveiling.

EMarketer doesn’t provide market share data but says “most parties familiar with app marketing agree Facebook is far and away the most important app install channel.” Let’s say you’ve built an adventure game. With Universal App Campaigns, you have unparalleled reach: you can drive installs on YouTube, the platform with 1B+ users who watch hundreds of millions of hours of content everyday. What’s less clear is if that intent then follows you to other platforms, or whether Google creates separate intent-based ads in, say, YouTube based on what you are watching. And Google’s in a good position here: Google owns four of the 12 sites that have more mobile app traffic than browser traffic in the US, according to Morgan Stanley Research. As with Nielsen’s early moves to work more closely with Twitter to measure and match up Twitter users with TV consumers, the idea here is to create a stronger link between the old platform and the new in order to encourage more advertising on the latter platform.

Google will be hoping the two new products announced Sunday (and which will be presented to Madison Avenue during the annual Advertising Week New York trade event on Monday) will increase its share of that growing market even further.

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