Alexei Oreskovic of Reuters reports that "roughly 60 hours of video is now uploaded to YouTube every minute.” The company also told him that YouTube is streaming 4 billion online videos every day, a 25 percent increase in the past eight months.
There was one other news nugget in Oreskovic's "exclusive" story: Three billion YouTube videos a week are monetized.
So, what does this mean to marketers?
First, YouTube has come a long way in a short time. In 2007, 8 hours of video was being uploaded to YouTube every minute. In 2008, that increased to 13 hours per minute. In 1009, it increased again to 24 hours per minute. In 2010, that increased again to 35 hours per minute. In 2011, it increased yet again to 48 hours per minute. And now it's 60 hours per minute.
Let's put this in context. That is:
- Roughly 86,400 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every day.
- The equivalent of Hollywood creating and releasing 302,400 full-length movies every week.
- The equivalent amount of content that 3,600 cable TV channels could broadcast (or narrowcast) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
And the kind of video content uploaded to YouTube comes in a much wider variety of genres than you'll see in movie theaters or on cable TV.
For example, check out "Star Wars UnCut: Director's Cut.” Casey Pugh started this fan-recreation project in 2009 and the 2-hour final cut hit YouTube on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2012. It's already has 985,000 views.
At the other end of the temporal spectrum, check out "The Bark Side: 2012 Volkswagen Game Day Commercial Teaser.” A canine chorus barks a familiar tune. This minute-long video was also uploaded on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2012, and already has 7.2 million views.
So, people are watching this stuff. In fact, YouTube is streaming 4 billion online videos every day, up from 3 billion in May 2011.
You'd think that the advertising world would be beating a path to YouTube's door. But the third data point revealed today that it hasn't – yet.
If 3 billion YouTube videos a week are monetized and YouTube is streaming 4 billion online videos every day, then do the math: 10.7 percent of videos are being monetized. That is up from less than 3 percent four years ago, but it's still a drop in the bucket.
So, what's the hang up?
First, a lot of the content on YouTube isn't worth watching. If you look at "The Absolute Worst Business Videos of 2011 – The Sucky Video Award Winners," you'll see what I mean.
Even YouTube says that less than 30 percent of videos get 99 percent of the views on the site. That's why the video-sharing site announced with great fanfare last October that even more talented creators and original entertainment would soon join its existing channel lineup.
YouTube has also launched grants and educational programs in the past year to bring an even broader range of entertainment to YouTube, giving viewers more reasons to keep coming back again and again. And for advertisers, these channels should represent a new way to engage and reach their global consumers.
But, that's the second hang up. Advertisers appear to be afraid of YouTube.
Yes, yes, 99 out of Ad Age's Top 100 advertisers have run campaigns on YouTube and the Google Display Network. But they are only dipping their toes in the water.
If nearly 30 percent of the videos on YouTube are getting 99 percent of the views and only 10.7 of videos are being monetized, then close to 19.3 percent of videos are getting views but aren't being monetized. Using the new numbers announced today, that is:
- Roughly 16,675 hours of video every day.
- The equivalent of 58,363 full-length movies every week.
- The equivalent amount of content that 695 cable TV channels could broadcast (or narrowcast) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Hey, those videos are getting views. They just aren't being monetized – yet.
Maybe it's was the Great Recession. Or, maybe too many ad agencies are still trying to figure out how to make a living creating video ads for a song.
Nevertheless, this has created an opportunity that's even bigger than the Oklahoma Land Rush of 1889. And while some marketers will focus on the 800 million people from all over the world visit YouTube every month, other marketers will look at the hundreds of ways you can slice and dice this audience by demographics, affinities, and other forms of targeting.
Either way, you will definitely want to be one of the "sooners" who lays quick claim to some of the most choice opportunities.