Online Video Viewers, Ads Post Big Numbers in March

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Various sites owned by Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG), including YouTube, drew nearly 154 million unique viewers in March. Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) clocked in with nearly 64 million unique viewers in March, the second largest total. The figures come from comScore Inc.’s (NASDAQ: SCOR) Video Metrix service. All told, over 182,000 million unique viewers in the US watched 39.3 billion online videos in March. Video ad views totaled 13.2 billion.

Other leading sites as measured by unique viewers include Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO), Vevo, Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT), Aol Inc. (NYSE: AOL), Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB), and Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) Vevo is a joint venture which includes Sony Corp. (NYSE: SNE) and Universal Music Group.

Compared with comScore’s data for online video for September 2012, the total number of unique viewers is up just 1 million and YouTube’s total is up by nearly 4 million, while Facebook’s total rose by almost 7 million.

The big jump came in the number of video ads viewed, which rose by about 4 billion in just 7 months. Viewers were hammered with more than 5 billion total ad minutes in March, up from 3.4 billion last September.

The playing field is a bit more level in ad views. Google nabs 2.32 billion of the 13.2 billion total, with BrightRoll Video Network trailing at 2.24 billion. Here are a couple of other tidbits from comScore’s report:

  • Video ads reached 52% of the total U.S. population an average of 82 times during March
  • Video ads accounted for 25.1% of all videos viewed and 2.2 percent of all minutes spent viewing video online
  • 84.5% of the U.S. Internet audience viewed an online video in September

Among YouTube’s partner channels, Vevo claimed nearly 51 million unique viewers each of whom spend about 36 minutes watching the Vevo’s music videos. Game and animation site Machinima pulled 24 million unique viewers claiming about 61 minutes of viewing time from each viewer.

As ad counts rise, online video viewership also continues to grow though the pace of growth is much faster in advertising. That only makes sense as the online video providers continue their efforts to monetize the huge numbers of viewers for streaming video.

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