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Depending on your perspective, Valentine’s Day can be a time of celebration with your loved ones or a day of stress, anxiety, and last-minute gift purchases. Whichever side you land on, YouTube is increasingly a go-to place for celebrating this special day. But as we’ll see below, some brands seem to be behind the times in capturing this audience’s attention.
Valentine’s Day growth on YouTube
Since 2009, viewership of Valentine’s Day–related YouTube content has grown by more than 600%, to nearly half a billion views per year. At the current growth rate, Valentine’s day content will eclipse 800 million views in 2015 and easily surpass a billion views in 2016.
Moreover, this Valentine’s Day audience has engaged at an increasing rate each year, achieving an engagement rate of 1.65% (far exceeding the YouTube benchmark of 1% engagement). In February 2014, this engagement rate skyrocketed to 3.1%
Interestingly, viewership of Valentine’s day content isn’t restricted to the month of February alone. The percent of views occurring in February has dropped from 46% in 2009 to 29% in 2015, meaning that a whopping 370 million views occur in the other 11 months of the year. This seems like quite the opportunity for brands, doesn’t it?
Brands playing catch-up
As it turns out, big brands are late to the party. An analysis of major jewel and flower brands shows that only one brand, 1-800-Flowers.com, has made a concerted effort with Valentine’s day marketing on YouTube.
Despite this advantage in content, 1-800-Flowers.com falls below engagement benchmarks, at 0.17%. They aren’t alone, however: none of the brands in their competitive set crack a 0.5% engagement rate.
The good news for brands is that the heavy lifting has already been taken care of: there’s already a sizable audience on YouTube consuming Valentine’s Day content. Now the task is to capture these eyeballs and transfer their strong engagement onto your brand.