YouTube’s plans to up the amount of professional content on its site got a boost Wednesday, as Time Warner (NYSE: TWX) agreed to put a wide range of clips from its TV shows and movies on the video portal. Walt Disney (NYSE: DIS) reached a similar deal to put clips on YouTube in late March, and in April YouTube tweaked the set up of its site to promote partner content.
Under the terms of its pact with Time Warner, YouTube will host Time Warner content on its site, although Time Warner will be able to sell ads around it and will split revenue with YouTube. The content will be featured in a Time Warner embeddable player and Time Warner can also create branded channels for its programming, much like the one it already has on the site for TimeWarner’s HBO.
Key to Google’s strategy for YouTube are deals like the ones it has struck with Walt Disney and now Time Warner. During the company’s earnings call last month, executives said that monetized views on the site had tripled over the last year and specifically highlighted the success of partner content. But to effectively compete against rival Hulu, YouTube will have to move from clips to long-form video and add to its now limited selection of full length videos and TV episodes. Executives have said those deals are coming next.
Press release below …
NEW YORK, NY and SAN BRUNO, CA, Aug 19, 2009 — Time Warner Inc. (NYSE: TWX | Quote | Chart | News | PowerRating) and YouTube(TM) today announced an online video distribution agreement that will give consumers access to an extensive variety of high-quality, short-form content owned by Time Warner, including clips from movies, television shows and news programming. The agreement will allow Time Warner’s Warner Bros. Entertainment and Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. to program videos on YouTube using a Time Warner embeddable player.
YouTube will host the content made available from a wide range of Time Warner-owned television shows and movies. Consumers will have easier access to a wide selection of existing and future clips, ranging from CNN news coverage to Cartoon Network and Adult Swim animated shows to TNT’s hit dramas to Warner Bros. Television productions like “Gossip Girl” and “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” Another Time Warner property, HBO, has been programming a branded channel on YouTube since early last year with promotional content from shows including “True Blood,” “Hung” and “Entourage.”
In addition, this deal gives Time Warner the ability to create separate channels for its key participating brands as well as to control and sell the ad time on YouTube. Warner Bros. Entertainment and Turner Broadcasting will work with YouTube to offer their advertising and agency partners unique packages of targeted advertising, supplemental marketing and branded channels.
Time Warner Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bewkes said: “Our agreement with YouTube helps us expand the amount of our promotional content, animation and news that we already make available online. Working with YouTube, we expect to improve our ability to monetize this short-form content through new and creative advertising initiatives.”
“This partnership with Time Warner will provide our community with some of the most popular video content produced,” said Chad Hurley, co-founder and CEO of YouTube. “We hope to build on this deal and look forward to a long and productive relationship.”
Under the agreement, videos from Time Warner properties will appear on YouTube and across Google’s product suite. Clips will include advertising, with time sold by Warner Bros. Entertainment and Turner Broadcasting System. Time Warner’s properties will share ad revenue with YouTube. The flexibility of this ad sales model differentiates YouTube from its competitors in the industry and was a key factor in the agreement with Time Warner. YouTube also will feature Time Warner content in marketing and promotional campaigns, including display ads.
Many of the Time Warner brands or television shows will have the opportunity to create and program YouTube channels, beginning this year.