On the day of YouTube Red’s launch (YouTube’s first-ever subscription service), top YouTubers Pewdiepie and KickThePJ decide to do a bit of market research of their own regarding their millennial viewing audiences on YouTube and whether or not these millions of followers would pay $9.99/month to see their videos ad-free.
The original Twitter poll from KickThePJ was retweeted by highest-grossing YouTuber, Pewdiepie (over 6.6 million followers on Twitter; over 40 million subscribers on YouTube). With a total of 87,577 votes, 2,090 retweets, and 4,605 favorites on Twitter, these figures represent highly targeted market insight into both millennial audience behaviors and the viewpoints from YouTube’s own creators.
The poll results are staggering and definitive: out of 87,577 votes, 93% of Millennials will not pay for YouTube Red. Only 7% would pay $10/month for YouTube’s new ad-free subscription service.
Taking it one step further, Pewdiepie polls his own audience on whether or not they use ad blockers when viewing videos on YouTube. In a comprehensive Tumblr post, the world’s most famous (and richest) YouTuber lays out his thoughts on the intersection of YouTube Red and ad blocking.
These polls, consumer insights, and millennial sentiment come at a crucial time in the industry where brands, publishers, and advertisers are evaluating their marketing strategies in light of ad-blocking trends and the change of service agreements introduced by YouTube’s new subscription service. Perhaps the takeaway message here is that a key demographic of YouTube’s primary viewers are not keen on paying, especially since many already experience ad-free YouTube videos (a major selling point of YouTube Red) via ad blockers. YouTube’s aggressive pricing model coupled with creator qualms about lost revenue, YouTube audience backlash, and the rampant use of ad blockers creates several unanswered questions for audiences, YouTubers, and advertisers alike.
YouTube Red’s reception is a developing story. Check back for latest updates or subscribe to our industry digest for breaking news, stats, and trends!