I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: The children are our future. You can learn a lot about the future by watching them, particularly by watching how they use technology and how they consume media, and how that will translate into future business models.
Take newspapers, for instance: Somewhere along the line the younger generation stopped reading newspapers, opting instead to get their news online. (This idea seems quaint, now, for those of us who make our livings writing for web-only publications.) Or take my generation, which somewhere along the line decided that it didn’t want land lines — who wants a phone that only rings in a place you’re rarely at?!?! — and went mobile-first, and in most cases, mobile-only.
I thought about this trend when I saw a study YouTube did with Nielsen, seeking more information about the elusive “light TV viewers.” So what do we know about them? They’re generally younger — under 49 years old — and they tend to be well-off, college-educated, and highly influential due to their interest in social networking. In other words, they’re a highly coveted demographic among marketers.
These aren’t the people who just sit in front of a TV for five hours every day. In fact, they average only about 39 minutes of TV viewing a day, according to the study. But it’s not like they’re great outdoorsmen. Instead, they are finding their entertainment elsewhere — online, on mobile devices, on social networks, etc.
YouTube’s goal was to help advertisers better understand and target messages to this strange beast. The cross-media study with Nielsen looked at how effective ads were across TV, YouTube, and the Google Display Network. (GDN) And not surprisingly, the study found that advertisers can better reach kids who don’t really watch TV by also putting their ads on YouTube and GDN.
Here are the stats to back those claims up: According to YouTube (and Nielsen), campaigns that included YouTube and GDN added four percentage points of incremental reach to light TV viewers. More importantly, it cost 92 percent less to achieve those results online versus on TV. The study also found that putting ads only on TV didn’t reach some 63 percent of light TV viewers — because duh, they don’t watch TV.
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