Data for content owners
Find out how Content Manager can help you track aggregated data across multiple channels for different content types, including assets.
Find the right data sources
YouTube has tools that can help you find the right data. Understanding which metrics are available, and how to act on this data, can help you improve videos and channels, keep your content strategies and programming strategies on track, and run accurate business and financial reports. You can track specific or aggregated data for different content types through Content Manager: by video, playlist, asset, or channel.
YouTube Analytics displays performance-based data, with a lag time of up to 72 hours.
- Creator Studio allows channel managers to monitor data for a single channel.
- Content Manager permits content owners to monitor performance across many channels—and, if they use Content ID, also set and apply default policies across all claimed content.
You can also access revenue data on a video, channel, or asset level.
- YouTube Analytics in Creator Studio contains revenue estimates, useful for identifying trends or making projections.
- Final revenue is available through the downloadable reports in Content Manager, available as .csv files on the tenth of each month. These figures reflect end-of-month adjustments. Content owners can use these reports for accounting purposes.
Evaluate your content
Dozens of interconnected metrics and dimensions overlap to form a comprehensive picture of performance. Content Manager provides insight to how content performs across many channels. You may look specifically at:
- Individual video performance: Sometimes a standout video can provide guidance. But, more generally, once you can determine how well content performs at the video level, you have a better basis for making recommendations around content, upload schedules, and creative strategies.
- Revenue by channel: Analyze a single channel’s revenue with Content Manager’s downloadable reports to determine payments to that channel’s contributors or creators.
- Channels ranked by revenue: If you manage a Multi-Channel Network (MCN) or track content across multiple channels, Content Manager can identify top earners—and help determine where there’s room to improve.
- Assets by usage: Once you’ve uploaded an asset and its references, YouTube’s Content ID system tracks third-party usage of that asset for you. Understanding the popularity of content you own, where it is watched, and by whom—especially when you didn’t upload the videos containing it—can provide insights around producing, supporting, or distributing content in the future. You may gain additional insights based on how frequently—and by whom—your content is uploaded to YouTube.
- Assets by revenue: Beyond helping protect your intellectual property, Content ID can also help protect your assets so you can earn the most revenue. Use Content Manager to track revenue earned by your content across the YouTube ecosystem, regardless of uploader.
Break down the data
Metrics—the number of views, likes, shares, or comments your content earned—become even more powerful in combination with dimensions—qualitative characteristics of users, sessions and actions. You can investigate many metrics along dimensions such as geography, date, YouTube product, and more.
For example, the Demographics report includes the metric “views” and the dimension “gender”— together, they can indicate whether more men or women watch your videos.
Pulling together metrics and dimensions allows you to very quickly investigate questions like:
- Do you earn more watch time from Germany or Thailand?
- Do viewers spend more time watching your content on laptops or smartphones?
- What impact does uploading subtitles have on your audience?
As a content owner with access to Content Manager, you can perform all of those standard analyses, plus, you can:
- Manage multiple channels: look at aggregate metrics across all connected channels.
- Leverage Content ID: examine individual assets to get performance metrics both on your own videos and any user-generated content you’re claiming.
Set a watch time strategy across channels
Data can give you specific insights into what types of content are successful on YouTube, guiding strategic decisions and goal-setting.
How you use that information to design an engagement strategy will depend on what type of organization you’re working for, and what your business goals are:
- A record label may be interested in developing artists who connect extremely well with listeners.
- An MCN may prefer to work with highly-engaging creators, and request audience engagement numbers before signing a new channel.
- An entertainment company considering whether to expand their offerings into other languages can greatly benefit from knowing which countries people are already watching their videos in.
Watch time data can help you answer those questions, and provides insight into viewing patterns: content for children typically sees viewership spikes after school or when schools are not in session. Advertisers tend to spend less at the start of the calendar year, after the holiday season, so expect ad revenue to dip during the first quarter. You can plan for these patterns when you’re aware of them.
Consider the six watch time reports again, and how each dataset might contribute to a multichannel strategy:
- The Watch time report could surface that one of your channels outperforms the others during a specific time period; or, compare time periods to one another.
- The Traffic sources report could reveal that two of your channels have similar audiences; consider cross-promotions, collaborations, or calls to action to boost both channels’ viewership.
- The Demographics report might surface a multinational audience, leading you to consider producing content in another language.
- The Audience retention report will reveal your most-engaging content; what facets of successful channels may be reproducible?
- The Devices report could help you determine which ad formats to display on which channel.
- The Playback locations report identifies websites that embed your videos to share with their audiences. If you get a lot of attention from a specific site, consider reaching out to its administrator and asking them to promote similar channels.
Knowing where, when, how, and by whom your content is being consumed offers infinite opportunities to refine your offerings and your processes. And watch time provides the best insights into content consumption.