Google commissioned a study by analytics firm, Nielsen to explore the relationship between YouTube engagement and TV program viewership, and whether or not there is a direct correlation in viewing habits. As it turns out, there is a direct connection between views on YouTube and TV content.
According to Nielsen’s findings, TV reach seems to drive YouTube engagement, and in turn, YouTube engagement drives TV reach. According to the report, people who view a TV program’s content on YouTube are more likely to tune in to the actual show. Because of that, as TV audience increases, so does YouTube viewership.
“The direct relationship between YouTube views and TV viewing is strong,” Jonathan Zepp, head of YouTube’s North American content partnerships said in the study. “Which means advertisers and agencies have a tremendous opportunity to increase brand engagement through campaigns that harness this relationship.”
Nielsen conducted the study among persons 18-years of age and older, for 30 specific TV shows evaluated across various genres. What it found was that, in general, TV content with more YouTube views and video uploads have larger TV audiences. When looking at a “leading talk show,” for example, there was an 18 percent increase in tune-in on TV among those who watched related YouTube content on PC versus those who did not. Likewise, YouTube viewership rises as TV program reach increases.
Examples of this behavior can be found on such YouTube accounts as CONAN, sporting over 4.2 million subscribers and surpassing one billion total views. Game of Thrones, at nearly 2 million subscribers, keeps fans obsessed with the show during and between seasons. Both YouTube channels feature teasers and behind the scenes, offering bite-sized entertainment for viewers who are then encouraged to tune into the TV program itself.
“The notion that YouTube can bring new people into a show while also keeping current fans connected,” Zepp explained, “Presents a big opportunity for both programmers, as well as advertisers, who seek to capture audiences whenever and wherever they watch premium content.”