A blunt truth underpinning the ‘value gap’ debate: if YouTube is going to pay music rightsholders more royalties, one of the best ways will be by increasing its advertising revenues. Which, as we reported earlier this year when parent company Alphabet started disclosing them, have grown from $8.15bn in 2017 to $11.16bn in 2018, then $15.15bn in 2019.
Anyway, whenever YouTube makes a move that could increase its ad revenues, it’s relevant to the music industry. So, read up on YouTube Select. It’s the video service’s new ‘premium’ advertising tier, described in the announcement as a “reimagination and unification of solutions like Google Preferred and prime packs”.
Brands will be able to spend their ad dollars on “a diverse mix of content packages called lineups” that are tailored to particular markets and video categories: entertainment, sport, beauty etc. There’s also a ‘brand safety’ argument here, with advertisers being pitched on the merits of ensuring their ads only appear around high-quality videos and channels. ‘Music’ is one of the key categories.
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