The addition marks a 60 per cent increase to its original content channels and video destinations for brands. New entrants include BBC Worldwide, Jamie Oliver, Netmums, Mixmag and Gravity Road, which will have an editorial partnership with Grazia for a fashion channel (see video above).
YouTube hopes that by adding more professionally produced long-form content users will stay on the site for longer, which will mean the platform can lure more big spending advertisers that invest the majority of their marketing budgets on TV.
The Google-owned company is understood to have invested $100m in marketing and launching the first 100 channels last year. The New York Times reports that it will invest an additional $200m in marketing and production costs for the new channels and existing support for the original batch.
Brands with channels on YouTube receive an advance to launch their video destinations in exchange for Google’s exclusive access for about a year. Google then shares about half of the ad revenue associated with that brand’s videos once the advance has been reached.
The first round of channels launched last year originated from US production houses, but YouTube has now expanded the strategy to include content creators from the UK, France and Germany.
Robert Kyncl, YouTube’s global head of content, says: “Some of the most successful formats on TV come from Europe. The expansion of original channels in Europe allows more content creators of all stripes, from top producers to talented up-and-comers, to build their audiences all over the world.”