With interest in sports content rising on YouTube, the platform has today announced that it's updated its YouTube Sports platform, while it's also expanding its connected TV ad offerings to help brands reach sports fans on the platform.
As you can see here, YouTube has refreshed its existing YouTube/Sports set-up to provide a more all-encompassing, immersive destination for sports content.
As explained by YouTube:
"YouTube.com/Sports makes it easier for passionate fans to find new and personalized content, and stay up to date with the latest news all in one place. Simply click the Explore tab on mobile devices or enter the page from the left-hand guide on your computer. This will be soon available on TV screens, too."
Which is important - according to YouTube, watch time on TV screens of its sports videos (excluding live content) increased by over 65% in 2020. Which makes sense - people were stuck at home for long periods of time, looking for entertainment options. YouTube consumption, in general, was up throughout the year. But sports has become an important area of focus for many, which has prompted YouTube to refresh its dedicated sports site.
"On this new sports destination, fans will find a collection of recent game highlights, sports news and locally trending videos. It ensures that fans around the world can see their favorite videos from the NFL, LaLiga, MLB, NBA, and WWE through upcoming seasons, and an array of other leagues in one place. That means fans could catch up on the other weekend’s Bills vs. Chiefs AFC championship game and then relive the classic 1993 AFC Championship game."
It seems like a fairly obvious move to maximize fan engagement - with so many sports videos presented on one screen, it's easy to imagine sports fans sticking around to check out the various clips. That's especially true on larger home TV screens, where the dedicated presentation format will make it easier for binge viewing of your favorite sports highlights.
In order help advertisers capitalize on this, YouTube is also expanding its connected TV (CTV) ad options, as part of YouTube Select.
"Due to the high advertiser interest we saw in the U.S. for the CTV offering, we are expanding to new markets including Australia, Canada, India and Japan and more in 2021. This means an easier way to align CTV ads to the best YouTube sports content viewed on TV screens across both YouTube and YouTube TV apps."
With people increasingly watching YouTube on their home TV sets, that, essentially, provides a more cost-effective, targeted TV ad option, which can be a powerful way to reach the right audiences with your campaigns.
And with a dedicated sports platform now added to the YouTube Select mix, that will make it easier again for brands to hone in on more specific audiences with their outreach efforts.
You can read more about the updated YouTube Sports platform here.