As the holiday shopping season approaches, retailers are turning to artificial intelligence to provide a more personalized and convenient customer experience. According to a recent announcement from YouTube, the video platform will now leverage Google AI to create tailored video playlists related to seasonal events and trends.

YouTube’s “Spotlight Moments,” a new AI-driven package automatically identifies the most popular, relevant videos around holidays, major events or cultural moments. This makes it easier for advertisers to “own the moment” around these events, when viewers are most engaged. Advertisers can then promote their brand across customized channels that automatically update with relevant content.

Viewers Prefer Highlights Over the Actual Events

Consider that billions of viewers turn to the platform daily to engage with content before, during and after major events to watch behind-the-scenes footage, highlight reels, fan analysis and more. In fact, more than half of people surveyed for the 2023 YouTube Culture & Trends report say they prefer to watch creators break down a major event rather than watch the event itself (e.g. Oscars, Grammys, sporting events).

Marketing leader GroupM has already adopted the AI-powered ad solution for its clients.

While consumers interact directly with Google’s AI through chatbot and search products, AI increasingly works behind the scenes to shape users’ experiences. For YouTube, algorithmic recommendations drive billions of hours of watch time daily. Now, AI will fine-tune video playlists to connect brands with audiences during significant cultural moments.

New Feature Expands YouTube’s AI-Enabled Products

Spotlight Moments expands YouTube’s existing suite of AI-enabled ad products. Video Reach campaigns tap Google AI to analyze content and deliver broader campaign reach at lower cost. Early tests increased reach 54% while reducing cost-per-thousand (CPM) 42%. Video View campaigns drove 40% more views at 30% lower cost in initial trials.

Generative AI Is Reinventing Digital Advertising

Google foresees an “AI first” era where creative generation, asset production, and media buying rely on AI. Natural language interfaces help brands build text and visual ads. Performance Max campaigns leverage AI to synthesize compelling brand creatives using website content. And AI conversationally engages potential customers as search becomes more interactive.

As AI brings transformative changes, brands must stay ahead of the curve. Leveraging AI-optimization for seasonal promotions provides a distinct competitive advantage.

With Google prominently featuring AI, retailers and consumer brands should actively explore generative technologies to creatively engage holiday shoppers. AI-powered advertising and personalization will likely take center stage this holiday season.

I’ve said it before and I imagine I will keep saying it for a while – if you aren’t exploring Generative AI to automate and augment your campaigns, you are falling behind. AI is here to stay and will continue to transform the way business is done.

If you need assistance understanding how to leverage Generative AI in your marketing, advertising, or public relations campaigns, contact us today. In-person and virtual training workshops are available. Or, schedule a session for a comprehensive AI Transformation strategic roadmap to ensure your marketing team utilizes the right GAI tech stack for your needs.

Read more: YouTube Helps Brands Target Cultural Moments With AI-Powered Ads


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