The Advertising Apprentice

August 4, 2009

Visit YouTube.com for News?

Filed under: Advertising — adamlauzon @ 12:39 PM
Tags: , , ,

The New York Times yesterday published an article about a new YouTube development that threatens to lure away further advertising dollars from traditional media outlets.

This video is an example of the type of content being posted on YouTube as part of the News Near You program. At the time of this point it over a hundred thousand viewers!

As the article cites this project has yet to become “fiscally relevant”, but given that so many of us already rely on the Internet for local and international news, you have to think it’s only a matter of time before News Near You starts generating significant revenue. (Consider this, when was the last time you picked up a local newspaper, or watched the evening news at 6 or 11, or turned on the radio at the top of the hour to find out the day’s top stories? Chances are you don’t it often. If you’re like me, you probably visit the websites of your favourite news outlets like CTV Ottawa, The Ottawa Citizen, or CNN.)

The one element that could really help to launch this into the stratosphere is that as YouTube is owned by Google, Google is now listing relevant YouTube videos alongside the news articles. Having arguably the top search engine in the world promoting this new service is a big advantage that news outlets don’t have a response to. 

In order to increase content for News Near You, YouTube has agreed to revenue splitting with the local news organizations; however, I feel that once viewership increases, and I believe it will happen, that it’s only a matter of time before that agreement is terminated.

It seems to me that this is something that is destined to succeed. News organizations can cooperate and contribute articles, partake in the revenue splitting and maybe even learn something in the process about the online media or they stand pat and do nothing and watch their viewer-, listener-, and reader-ship decrease.

I should point-out though that I don’t think that traditional media is about to become extinct. There will always be loyal followers, but the trend over the last five years or so is for people, especially those in my generation, to go online for immediate news updates. And it’s this immediacy that makes the News Near You so appealing. 

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