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Does YouTube Advertising Work for Seniors?

You have a favorite YouTube video, don’t you? Chances are, you’ve even uploaded a video to the site yourself.

If not, you’re in the minority; YouTube has become a culturally pervasive platform for sharing stories and meaning. It’s a channel that allows viewers to watch and engage with stories on a personal level, and even gives them the opportunity to share their own.

For those marketing to Baby Boomers and seniors, though, the question is whether or not YouTube is as effective at reaching an older demographic as it obviously is at engaging younger ones. YouTube is great, but does YouTube advertising work for seniors?

The answer, as it turns out, is dependent on a few factors. Let’s take a look.

Is there a viable senior audience to be reached on YouTube?

Another way to ask this question: do boomers and seniors actually use YouTube? First of all, it’s worth noting that seniors are more active online than they’re often given credit for. This is a point we’ve established in more detail before, but consider the fact that the 50+ age demographic is the fastest growing group online, or that boomers and seniors spend more time per week online (19 hours on average) than watching TV, and you’ll begin to understand the reality of boomer and senior internet activity.

And, as mature audiences increasingly make their way online, YouTube is one of the most popular landing places for the demographic. In fact, boomers and seniors search for the term “YouTube” on Google 3,621 times a minute. A whopping 82% of viewers over the age of 45 use YouTube to watch videos, making the site the inordinately preferred video platform for older consumers.

So, is there a viable senior audience to be reached on YouTube? The answer, overwhelmingly, is yes.

Is YouTube an effective channel for instigating engagement with Boomers and seniors?

YouTube doesn’t just attract high volumes of boomer and senior web traffic, though; it’s also an incredibly effective medium for encouraging engagement and action. This is partly because of the nature of video as a medium. Video allows for engaging storytelling, leading to increased user involvement with the information being delivered.

This effect is made tangible by metrics associated with user engagement. For example, 3 in 4 online video watchers have taken action as the result of viewing a video—from searching for more information online, to clicking a link relevant to the video, to forwarding the video to someone else. Simply put, watching videos leads to viewer actions.

Creating an effective campaign

If YouTube has a viable boomer and senior user base and incredible potential for generating engagement with its users, then it’s clear that YouTube advertising should be considered by brands. Strategy matters. Developing a strategy that leverages the power of creative and content working together is key to success in this channel. While this isn’t necessarily the post to dive into tactical specifics, it is worthwhile to note a few best practices to keep in mind.

• Present the brand in the first five to seven seconds to increase unaided brand awareness.
• Include a strong hook at the beginning of the video to increase completed views.
• Optimize frequency rates. It’s important to get your ad in front of viewers, but you don’t want to show it to them too often or they’ll become fatigued and disinterested by your message.
• Coordinate your message across other marketing tactics like search and social media to make your efforts even more effective.

To create the most effective YouTube advertising campaign possible, it’s helpful to have creative designed by someone who understands both the platform and the audience being targeted.

At Immersion Active, we have a proven track record in reaching boomers and seniors online, and creating vibrant campaigns that genuinely engage seniors is what we live for. Have any questions about the viability of YouTube advertising, or any thoughts on best practices? Let us know! We’d love to hear from you.

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