YouTube Launches Audio Ads

YouTube is introducing a new type of ad to target the “ambient listening” on the video-sharing platform.

Audio ads aren’t new. We’ve been hearing them on the radio for decades, but they are new to YouTube, a platform focused on video content where they don’t make obvious sense.

That is, until you realize how popular music videos are, with YouTube claiming “more than 50 percent of logged-in viewers who consume music content in a day consume more than 10 minutes of music content.”

As Melissa Hsieh Nikolic, Group Product Manager, YouTube Ads explains to brands and advertisers,

“To help you tailor your media and creative approach to the different ways consumers are engaging with YouTube, we’re introducing audio ads, our first ad format designed to connect your brand with audiences in engaged and ambient listening on YouTube. Audio ads, currently in beta, help you efficiently expand reach and grow brand awareness with audio-based creative and the same measurement, audience, and brand safety features as your video campaigns.”

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This can result in a better experience for listeners, too. It is true, that nobody likes ads, but if you’re just listening to a video and a visual ad starts playing, it’s probably not going to make much sense. At least with an audio ad, you clearly know what’s being advertised, and we can keep our fingers crossed they are shorter ads. And while these audio ads play, the visuals will either be a still image or a simple animation.

YouTube is also launching “dynamic music lineups.” They take the form of a range of channels bringing together music focused on different genres, moods, fitness, or simply the Top 100 songs.