Ahead of Digital NewFronts, YouTube and Hulu Reign Supreme, Finds Matrix Solutions

Ahead of Digital NewFronts, YouTube and Hulu Reign Supreme

New Forecast from Matrix Solutions Reveals Americans Aren’t Excited About Video Content from the Majority of Companies Presenting at NewFronts

Ahead of the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s Digital NewFronts, the premier event to showcase the latest in original digital video programming, research reveals that more than half (57%) of Americans who have watched original digital content in the last year are most excited for content from YouTube, trailed by Hulu, which garnered excitement around its original video content from nearly a third (32%) of Americans. In contrast, the company that fewest respondents are excited about is magazine publisher Conde Nast (2%).

The findings are according to the 2018 Digital NewFronts Sentiment Forecast from Matrix Solutions, the only global ad sales platform built for media, which commissioned YouGov to poll the views of a representative sample of 1,319 American adults online.

Despite widespread interest in original video content from YouTube and Hulu,
data also indicates that Americans show little to no excitement around such content from the majority of publishers exhibiting at the conference.

Each company presenting at Digital NewFronts 2018 that netted excitement from less than 20 percent of Americans who have watched original digital content in the last year include:

  • One in six respondents reported excitement on original digital content from BBC News (17%) and ESPN (16%)
  • One in seven (14%) are excited about original digital content from Twitter
  • One in 11 (9%) are excited about original digital content from Viacom (i.e. Nickelodeon, MTV)
  • Just seven percent are excited about original digital content from Disney Digital and Oath (i.e. TechCrunch and Engadget)
  • Six percent are excited about content from Fusion Media Group (i.e. The Onion, Fusion, Gizmodo)
  • Five percent are excited about content from Studio 71 (a media company creating original video content with 1,300 creators and channels on YouTube)
  • Just four percent are interested in content from Refinery29, Meredith and DigitasLBi (a marketing and advertising agency that creates original video content for brands like Dunkin’ Donuts)
  • Only three percent are excited for original digital video from Group Nine Media (i.e. Now This, Thrillist, The Dodo)
  • And a mere two percent reported excitement for content from Conde Nast (i.e. GQ, Vanity Fair, Vogue)
Ahead of Digital NewFronts, YouTube and Hulu Reign Supreme
Mark Gorman

“Legacy media brands, like the New York Times, don’t suffer in terms of brand recognition for their reporting, but, as suggested by our data, they are experiencing a lack of awareness around their original digital video content,” said Mark Gorman, CEO at Matrix Solutions. “The ‘pivot to video’ for publishers is still in its early stages and, as such, it may take a while for consumers to begin associating original video content with the Times and the BBC in the same way they do with YouTube and Hulu. Traditional and lesser-known media companies might want to consider rethinking their approach to video and how they promote it. If it begins resonating more with everyday people, brands and advertisers are more likely going to want to be a part of it.”

Also Read: Matrix Solutions Debuts First Annual 2017 Advertising Spend Report

Americans Averse to Digital Video Ads, Concerned Over Ad Targeting

Further building upon the challenge facing media companies heading into Digital NewFronts 2018, research revealed that more than half (52%) of Americans who have watched original digital content in the last year do not enjoy any forms of online advertising —period. More alarming, out of the ad formats that respondents did prefer, a mere six percent named digital video ads as their preferred format. Rather, respondents preferred other formats:

  • 14 percent prefer social media ads
  • 13 percent prefer search engine ads
  • Nine percent prefer display ads
  • Six percent prefer native ads

For the ads Americans are being served, regardless of format, they aren’t perceived as tailored to the viewers. A whopping 76 percent respondents believe that they don’t experience tailored digital video ads in all cases – 51 percent think digital video ads are sometimes tailored to them and one quarter (25%) do not think digital video ads are ever tailored to them.

Also Read: The Rise of Video: LinkedIn B2B Video Now Available for Native Ad Campaigns

Americans Adjusting to Emerging Technology for Advertising

With video content creation becoming even more sophisticated, including more efforts toward AR and VR content, digital video advertising opportunities are increasing as well. And, good news for media companies already experimenting with AR/VR content like USA TODAY NETWORK, New York Times and CNN—American attitudes are becoming increasingly more positive toward ads living in either a virtual or augmented reality environment:

  • While 1 in 5 (22%) of Americans who have watched original digital content in the last year are annoyed that brands and media companies are injecting ads into originally produced VR and AR content, 1 in 6 (17%) think it is fair for media companies to sell ad opportunities to brands around such content
  • One in eight (13%) are excited to experience how brands and media companies are experimenting with new emerging technologies and advertising
  • In the same vein, one in eight (12%) think they would be more receptive and interested in ads that are in VR or AR than traditional digital video ads

Matrix Solutions commissioned YouGov PLC — a third party, professional research and consulting organization — to poll the views of 1,319 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between March 21-22, 2018. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all US adults (aged 18+).

Recommended Read: Creating a Targeted Campaign Using Video

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