For those who do not count themselves among the 800 million monthly visitors to YouTube, the news is that the website is turning computers into the second coming of the television, and naturally Google is steering the ship.
The search giant’s quest for Internet omnipresence led it to acquire the website in 2006 and it is now amplifying its power with the addition of the AdWords Web metrics tool, this time called Google AdWords for Video.
It wasn’t long ago that a little-known company called Orabrush started making headlines with a viral YouTube ad campaign that resulted in the sale of a million units of the company’s product and the birth of a new contender in the oral care industry. It is the dream of every online video Web marketer and entrepreneur, and up until now that kind of success was more of a crapshoot than a study in advertising science.
Google AdWords for Video will undoubtedly change that as the familiar Web metrics tool allows businesspeople, marketers and advertisers to more comprehensively manage campaigns and accurately target video ads. This will be achieved much like how it is when using traditional AdWords for text, by focusing on keywords and tailoring messages based on user response.
More specifically, advertisers will be able to use keywords to target potential clients or tie their ads to videos that fall within certain spheres of interest, like music or politics. And, as with text-based AdWords, advertisers will only pay when viewers watch their ads.
To get the ball rolling, Google is offering businesses $50 million in free YouTube video advertising, part of which will come in the form of a $75 credit for 500,000 new businesses that sign on to the platform. Google has also assigned nine “ambassadors” to help drive the project and is providing several videos and forums on how to best utilize the new service.
All of this ultimately means more money for Google, but what it also means is that there is a powerful new way for startups and small businesses to compete in one of the most innovative media arenas evolving today. YouTube is fast growing into a place where people go to watch actual channels, rather than just a website that’s fun to link to for amusing snippets of video.
Once the evolution of the combined TV/computer is complete and YouTube is the parent of an entire host of channels that people will watch on television, these businesses will be thankful for AdWords and that they had the initiative to get in on the ground floor.