Corporate Eye

Brand Marketing on YouTube – It’s Not Just for Young People

youtube laptop tvDon’t discount YouTube for marketing your brand. While YouTube has a reputation as a site for young people to watch and share short videos, the audience is actually a lot more diverse. In fact, 50% of the U.K. YouTube audience is over the age of 35 and 90% is over the age of 18.

That’s just two statistics released in a new study conducted by Google and Ipsos MediaCT. The YouTube Audience Study surveyed over 1,500 people between the ages of 13 and 64 in the U.K. during mid-2013, and the results reveal interesting opportunities for brand marketers.

Here are some compelling statistics about U.K. YouTube users that might make you rethink how you’re using YouTube to market your brand:

  • 48% are connected to more than 100 people online.
  • 50% talk about the content they watch on YouTube with other people.
  • 44% share videos they watch on YouTube with other people.
  • 50% share or reshare links.
  • 31% are amongst the first to try new products (vs. 14% of non-YouTube users).
  • 58% tell everyone about the brands they love (vs. 33% of non-YouTube users).
  • 41% have taken an action after watching an ad on YouTube.
  • 56% are male.
  • 65% have medium to high incomes.
  • 99% have medium to high education.
  • 89% use the internet daily.
  • Music videos are the most popular (59%) followed by comedy (44%) and how-to/do-it-yourself (40%).
  • 60% watch YouTube videos to be entertained.

While brand videos and ads are certainly not the first things that YouTube users in the U.K. look for, they’re not entirely averse to watching branded content on YouTube. More than one in three (36%) of U.K. YouTube users would rather watch a brand video on YouTube than a commercial, and 34% think that more companies should use YouTube to help them learn about those companies and brands. Furthermore, 28% of U.K. YouTube users believe that the site is a great place for brands to connect with them. More than one out of four U.K. YouTube users are motivated to make purchase decisions based on brand and user content as well as ads that they see on the site. For example, 27% get ideas for things to buy from YouTube videos and 26% say that YouTube helps them decide which products or brands to buy.

A particularly interesting part of the study results identifies when and how people in the U.K. use YouTube. For all locations, people used their smartphones to access YouTube more than any other device. These locations included at another person’s home, at school, on-the-go, at a restaurant or store, or at a social gathering. U.K. YouTube users were only more likely to use desktop computers to access YouTube when they were at home or work. For all categories, users were least likely to access YouTube with a tablet device. However, it’s important to keep in mind that the survey was actually conducted nearly a year ago. If the study were conducted again now, recent trends in increased mobile device usage means that it’s likely tablet usage would be much higher as would smartphone usage while desktop usage would likely be down at all locations.

Are you leveraging YouTube appropriately to connect with your target audience for brand marketing? It’s not just for kids. According to this study, your audience is using YouTube.

Image: Thomas van de Weerd

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.