Google Reveals 3 Ways YouTube Habits (and Ads) Have Changed


December 3, 2018 By

Cheryl Dykstra


Video continues to dominate when it comes to social media.

In fact, more than 500 million hours of videos are watched on YouTube alone each day. That’s not even factoring in all of the time spent watching videos on the other major social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.

Recently, Google (who owns YouTube) released a statement about the three main ways they’ve seen video viewing habits evolve – and how they in turn have adjusted their advertising for the platform.

Here’s an overview of those changes in viewing habits and advertising models…

Longer Viewing Sessions

The first change noted by Google is that users are spending longer periods of time watching videos in one sitting. Even the videos themselves are on an upward trend in length.

With this in mind, they started researching how the length of ads, the frequency of ads, and additional factors correlated to better user metrics and less content abandonment. What they found was that fewer interruptions resulted in better metrics, such as less drop off during videos and higher rates of ad viewing.

The solution to accommodate for fewer interruptions is what they’re calling an “ad pod,” where users are shown two ads during one break in content – therefore reducing the number of breaks without reducing the number of ads.

“Early experiment results also show an 8-11 percent increase in unique reach and a 5-10 percent increase in frequency for advertisers, with no impact to Brand Lift metrics.”

Watching Video on TV

In a world of Netflix, Hulu and HBO, more and more people are watching content that isn’t on cable – including YouTube videos.

Google reports that, “on average, users watch over 180 million hours of YouTube on TV screens every day.”

That’s why they introduced a new TV screen device type for Google Ads and Display & Video 360. This way advertisers are able to use different creative or set a specific budget just for ads that run on TV screens.

Self-Directed Discovery

The last change in viewing habits that Google and YouTube have observed is the manner in which people find content on YouTube.

Whereas years ago, most of the videos that were watched came from a URL that your friend sent – today more viewers than ever before are scrolling through their home feeds or the trending page to find videos that they might be interested in.

For this reason, YouTube brought TrueView video discovery ads to the YouTube home feed, along with Masthead and Universal App campaign ads.


The internet is an ever-evolving space – especially when it comes to Google. These advertising updates are just the tip of the iceberg for a company that releases many search algorithm updates a year and introduces new advertising opportunities almost just as often.

If you would like to take advantage of any of the new video marketing opportunities opening up on Google and the other platforms, please call us at (407) 682-2222 or use the contact form below to schedule a free strategy session for your business.

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