Check this out:
That's a new video ad by YouTube celebrity Jim Chapman, who has more than 2.4 million followers on the platform. And that clickable option on the right-hand side is a new, in-stream shopping option hosted within YouTube. Well, it's not entirely in-stream - clicking on any of the scrollable buy options within that list will take you to the retailer's website - but it's pretty impressive either way.
The new option is being showcased as part of YouTube's 'Awesome Stuff Week', where the Google-owned video platform will be partnering with some of the site's best known creators to highlight "popular, trendy, undiscovered-but-cool products on YouTube".
The strategy makes perfect sense - by partnering with well-known YouTubers, the platform is providing their advertisers with access to collectively more than 10 million fans - and that's just through Chapman, Gigi Gorgeous, iJustine and Unbox Therapy alone, the only four creators specifically mentioned in the official release. But there are more than that involved in the program, and by partnering with them and building stronger commercial links between these creators and YouTube, the company not only gets to create an expansive and wide-reaching campaign that'll no doubt secure massive reach and buzz for advertisers as we head into the Christmas chopping blitz, but it also solidifies their relationships with those creators, keeping them from migrating over to Facebook, which has been pushing hard to get YouTube creators over to their site.
From the official announcement:
"Sixty-four percent of shoppers say that YouTube influences their purchase decisions. In fact, we've seen more than 40 percent growth year-over-year in viewership of product videos such as sneaker pickups, first impressions, and product reviews."
It's those stats that have YouTube ramping up their push to win over advertisers, and while 'TrueView for Shopping' ads were announced back in May, this is the first time we've seen the extension of this new ad feature - and what better way to showcase a new ad offering than through influencers who'll amplify the reach of that content? In this sense, the announcement is a double win for YouTube, and a great way to underline the power of YouTube as an advertising platform. While all the hype has been about Facebook video, YouTube is taking the opportunity to flex it's muscles and remind advertisers of its capabilities. It'll be interesting to see the results of these ads in a few months time.
This week is the first 'Awesome Stuff Week', dedicated to fashion, with more 'Awesome Stuff' weeks planned, focusing on gadgets and holiday gifts, among others.
No word as yet as to when this new version of shopping ads will be made available to all advertisers.