Reaching Gen C on YouTube

Wednesday, May 1, 2013 | 5:30 PM

Today on our YouTube blog we announced exciting new milestones for our ecosystem. People are tuning into YouTube every day on their phones, laptops and tablets as their first source for entertainment, news, and education. In fact, people are now watching 50% more on YouTube than last year. And now, according to Nielsen, YouTube reaches more U.S. adults aged 18-34 than any cable network.

Driving this growth is a group of connected consumers that consume media on their own terms - or as Nielsen calls them, Generation C. Gen C is a psychographic that spans teens, millennials and Gen X, and is defined by a focus on Creation, Curation, Connection and Community.

In our last post about Gen C we explored how people watch YouTube on mobile devices. To gain more insight into Gen C, we worked with third party research firm Ipsos to survey people that fall in the Gen C psychographic about their media consumption. We found that 66% of Gen C spend the same or more amount of time watching online video as they do watching TV. In fact nearly 1 in 3 people within Gen C spend more time watching online videos than TV.


  • 46% of Gen C believe YouTube is an alternative to TV
  • 51% of Gen C say that watching a YouTube video about a product or service has impacted their purchase decision
  • 70% of Gen C have subscribed to one or more YouTube channels
  • 52% of Gen C say they often share YouTube videos with other people they know
  • Nearly 40% of Gen C proactively go to YouTube to engage with their favorite brands
YouTube drives sales

As Gen C spends more time online and less time watching TV, brands are rethinking the way they engage with consumers. To better understand how YouTube drives business results, we took a look at the impact of media spend on sales.

We partnered with third party analytics firm MarketShare to develop media allocation models for five categories including Smartphones, Auto Insurance, Credit Cards, Cosmetics and Entry Level Luxury Auto sales, using aggregated and anonymized data.

For every category MarketShare looked at, they found significant sales opportunities for brands by shifting meaningful media spend to YouTube. MarketShare recommends shifting on average 5% of media spend to YouTube to achieve 1-3% lift in sales at no additional cost.

For more information on Gen C and how your brand can reach consumers on YouTube, visit Think Insights.

Posted by Gunnard Johnson, Advertising Research Director, Google