Although teens think YouTube has too many ads, usage remains high

A large number of teenagers now access YouTube regularly in the US with 23.2 million of 12 to 17 year-olds projected to watch digital videos each month (eMarketer). However, for four in 10 the video streaming site has too many adverts, according to a survey by Forrester Research.

The survey found that 39% of respondents said YouTube had too many ads, followed by Facebook (26%). Snapchat and Instagram scored as featuring the fewest ads as only 11% (each) of teens complain about too many ads across these two social media platforms.

Despite the large number of ads, 77% of teenagers are using YouTube daily, compared to 55% using Facebook. Indeed, it appears that teens may be happy to tolerate heavier ad loads in exchange for content.

However, Debra Aho Williamson, principal analyst at eMarketer, points out that the type of advertising may be what matters the most.

“Teens might think there are too many ads on YouTube because YouTube ads are pre-roll or sometimes mid-roll video ads that users have to either watch, or click to skip after a few seconds. They may be more likely to skim right by ads that appear on Facebook or other social platforms, as the ads are native to the service.”

Interestingly, these findings also mean that Facebook may still have room to add mid-roll adverts within video without alienating its audience.