The Magic Behind Unboxing on YouTube
The holidays are just around the corner, which means the anticipation of giving and getting gifts is growing fast. That anticipation can be felt on YouTube, too, where unboxing videos have gotten 57% more views since last year. Many are still user-generated videos, but brands are starting to get in on the action, playfully showcasing products in all of their freshly unopened glory. Consider how unboxing videos might help your brand connect with consumers.
The holidays are just around the corner, which means the anticipation of giving and getting gifts is building with each day we cross off the calendar. That anticipation is felt everywhere: From town squares adorned with holiday decorations to picturesque window displays, and even on YouTube, where unboxing videos are watched and uploaded with increasing popularity. Unboxing is a growing phenomenon Unboxing video views have grown 57% over the past year, and uploads have grown more than 50%. But it’s not just the growth in the unboxing genre that’s impressive—it’s the sheer volume, too. It would take more than seven years to watch all the videos on YouTube with “unboxing” in the title that have been uploaded so far just this year. And those videos have more than a billion views in this year alone. Unboxing videos have seen 57% growth from last year Unboxing is a genre of videos on YouTube where people quite literally unbox a product to get a feel for it. Many are user-generated videos, but brands are starting to get in on the action, too. These videos not only document the experience of opening a product, but they often dramatize it and, in turn, take on a quirky, playful spirit, showcasing products in all of their freshly unopened glory. As of Nov. 17, there are more than 20 million search results on YouTube for “unboxing.” Now one in five consumers1 report that they’ve actually watched an unboxing video, according to Google Consumer Surveys. What is the magic behind unboxing, really? How can marketers make sense of this intriguing genre of videos to better connect with their consumers on YouTube? Unboxing fuels anticipation and provides useful product information To dig into these questions, we turned to the data behind YouTube unboxing videos, looking at watchtime and views for 2013 and 2014 to characterize trends. The results, combined with Google Consumer Surveys of 1,500 consumers conducted in October 2014, show that the magic behind unboxing videos might be connected to the feeling of anticipation we get in watching them. This becomes especially apparent when we consider that unboxing videos are most often watched during the holiday season, when giddy, child-like anticipation is running high anyway. In fact, 34% of the views2 for unboxing videos related to food, electronics, toys and beauty/fashion happen in the October to December time frame—that’s 1.5x higher than the average volume of unboxing video views in other quarters. More than the emotional feeling that unboxing videos elicit, there’s also a practical side to them. We found through research with TNS and Ogilvy earlier this year that 66% of recent purchasers of beauty products said YouTube allowed them to visualize the product they’re going to buy. So it’s no surprise that according to the recent Google Consumer Surveys, 62% of people who view unboxing videos3 do so when researching a particular product. In this sense, unboxing videos can help marketers build anticipation while providing useful product information during the holiday season (and even beyond). Read more here