Analysts have long been saying that YouTube is a gift for the TV networks: now we have the stats to prove it. CBS announced today that viewers are flocking to their TV shows after seeing the clips on YouTube. “Letterman” has gained 5 percent (or 200,000 new viewers), while “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” is up 7 percent (or 100,000 viewers) since the CBS YouTube channel debuted a month ago. They’ve uploaded 300 clips so far, which have averaged 857,000 views per day in total – that’s 29.2 million views on YouTube this month. It’s also worth noting that YouTube takes that content to millions of viewers outside of the US who can’t access CBS normally – if we could measure the channel’s global influence and recognition, I’m sure that will have increased dramatically. CBS has three of the top 25 Most Viewed videos this month, and they have 9 of the Most Viewed videos today (let’s hope they’re not gaming YouTube!). What’s more, they’ve got nearly 22,000 subscribers.
So the lesson is:
If you give away your content in bits and pieces in one medium, you’ll attract an audience to your content in other media.
And the lesson of that lesson is:
He who owns the content wins.