YouTube wrapped up tonight’s BrandCast event for advertisers by announcing seven new shows.
The other shows feature stars from beyond YouTube. There’s Ellen’s Show Me More Show, a twice-weekly behind-the-scenes program from Ellen Degeneres; Kevin Hart: What The Fit, a comedic fitness show starring the eponymous comedian; I Am: Demi Lovato, which shows the process of writing and recording Lovato’s new album; a Katy Perry Live Special; and Best.Cover.Ever., produced by Ryan Seacrest and hosted by Ludacris, where fans from around the world can compete to duet with their favorite musicians.
All of these shows will be ad-supported, a point underlined by YouTube Chief Business Officer Robert Kyncl. More and more content, he said, is being created for ad-free subscription services (like Netflix) and for premium cable: “We see these shows as a way to partner with you to buck this trend.”
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki acknowledged that YouTube may have to do more work than usual to win advertisers, given recent concerns around brand safety — namely, the fact that ads were running offensive content, unbeknownst to the advertisers.
“We apologize for letting some of you down,” said YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki. “I’m here to say that we can and we will do better. Over the past few weeks, our teams have been working around the clock to make important changes to make sure ads show up in the right place.”
By the way, that line I tried to draw earlier between YouTube and non-YouTube stars seems to be blurring — a point underlined by James Corden, one of the night’s performers. Corden said he was actually “quite reticent” about taking his current Late Late Show hosting gig, because he wasn’t sure how much impact he could have hosting a TV show that aired after 12:30am every night. Apparently, it was YouTube that changed his mind.
“I realized that I didn’t have to make a show for any timeslot, because we have the Internet, and more than that we had YouTube,” Corden said. “Here was a platform that allowed us to show every second of our show throughout every minute of our day, and if it’s good people will find it.”
So Corden said his team worked to create “the most conventional television talk show that could be sliced up and found by an audience whenever they wanted to find it.”
The approach has paid off, with Corden’s carpool karaoke video with Adele becoming the most viral video of 2016, and The Late Late Show receiving 2.8 billion views on YouTube over the past two years.