YouTube Expands Options For Advertisers On Its Growing Shorts Platform – NewFronts

YouTube is adding options for advertisers on its growing Shorts platform.

At its annual NewFronts presentation for media buyers Monday, the digital video giant said it is opening up real estate for ads within video reach campaigns, which benefit from AI tools. Since last fall, ads have been available via video action and app campaigns, which are different categories.

Kristen O’Hara, VP, Agency and Brand Solutions for Google, took the stage at YouTube’s New York headquarters along the Hudson River to deliver the news. Later, in an interview with Deadline, she said the Shorts effort has thus far been a “measured approach,” and said viewers wouldn’t notice a change in terms of volume or frequency of ads.

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“When people are scrolling through their Shorts feed, they really are in discovery mode,” she said. “So in addition to being able to discover new creators and new artists, they’re also discovering brands through that feed.”

Shorts, which launched in mid-2021, is racking up 50 billion daily views from 1.5 billion logged-in accounts. Because of the algorithmic nature of Shorts, an answer to TikTok serving up vertical videos no longer than 60 seconds apiece to both mobile and connected-TV viewers, brands can now “have their ads placed in the most popular and relevant content on the platform,” O’Hara said.

In a press release, YouTube said Paramount+ was one of its early partners in testing of the latest version of video reach campaigns, using it to help promote its new movie release, At Midnight. The streamer put spots across YouTube’s in-stream, in-feed and Shorts platforms and found that the campaign helped tap into new audiences and also drove higher efficiencies and higher ad recall compared to in-stream ads alone.

Onstage, O’Hara recalled a conversation she had earlier in her advertising career with director Barry Sonnenfeld. Despite having struck box office gold with the Men in Black franchise and other blockbusters, he was directing a commercial for Diet Dr. Pepper. When she asked him why he still gravitated to commercial work after establishing himself in features, she said he replied, “As a creator, nothing keeps you fresher than having to tell a short story.”

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