You’ve probably seen some of YouTube’s recent commercials which highlight various channels and individuals on their network. For instance, here’s one about Bethany Mota, a woman with a channel based around fashion, makeup and DIY tips.
There are a few others out there which follow this same format. We’re left asking a question which sounds like it’s the start of some Seinfeld bit – “What’s the deal with these YouTube commercials?”
YouTube promoting its content creators isn’t a bad idea considering the company makes its money based on the content its users create. However, TV commercials focused purely on one specific channel is a risk. They also paint her in a rather interesting light. Her channel is designed to feel like it’s a one-on-one experience. Here’s a girl talking to you about fashion. She’s not a celebrity, but more like a friend offering you advice. She connects with her audience in a similar way that Jenna Marbles connects with hers. They don’t seem like stereotypical celebrities. Strangely, YouTube elected to show off her success, bragging about her five million friends (subscribers) and making her look like a star.
Who is YouTube advertising to here? It’s as if they created a concept to appeal to people trying to find new forms of entertainment, but then their execution is targeted to the content creators themselves with a “look – you can be a star” message.
You also have to ask if this form of advertisement is effective. Is it a bit too focused? Too specific? By narrowing their ads to just a handful of larger channels and a handful of individuals, YouTube’s ads are appealing to a very small audience.
Yes, we are looking way, way too far into these ads. Still, we’ve come to expect a lot from Google and these YouTube ads fall well short of their high standards.