FrieslandCampina uses Marketing Mix Evaluation to compare the reach and sales impact of YouTube and TV

April 2016

FrieslandCampina – parent company of the Landliebe brand of dairy products – wanted to measure YouTube’s return on investment and see how YouTube’s reach compares to other channels in the brand’s media mix. Research found that 28% of YouTube reach is incremental to TV reach, and that YouTube’s sales impact is 3.7 times higher than TV.


Understand media consumption in today’s fragmented landscape

Develop successful advertising and media buying strategies


Used GfK’s Crossmedia Link panel to perform Marketing Mix Evaluation

Captured and quantified cross-media consumer behaviour and purchases


28% of YouTube campaign net-reach is incremental to TV campaign net-reach among main shoppers ages 20 to 49 with higher incomes

Short-term sales impact of YouTube is 3.7 times higher than TV

Net mid-term return on investment from YouTube is 3.5 times higher than TV

Different types of media were once easily defined by their devices. For example, TV shows appeared only on television sets, while news articles were seen only in print. With digital however, these straightforward rules no longer apply. The challenge now for companies like FrieslandCampina is to understand media consumption in today’s fragmented landscape. In order to implement successful advertising and media buying strategies, FrieslandCampina partnered with Google and market research and data science experts GfK to execute a Marketing Mix Evaluation of the effect of TV and YouTube video advertisements using GfK’s Crossmedia Link platform.

Quality reach through online video advertising

A Landliebe campaign aimed at family shoppers provided the perfect opportunity to compare channel performance. A 20-second spot ran on several German TV channels, while a 20-second pre-roll ad and companion banner appeared on YouTube, targeted to the family focused affinity segment.

"YouTube has proven to be a great platform to connect with our consumers as they are increasingly hard to reach on TV. A large share of YouTube’s reach was incremental to TV and YouTube turned out to be extremely impactful, resulting in a bigger return on investment than TV"

- Nektarios Misios, Global Marketing Manager Digital, FrieslandCampina

Although in absolute numbers more consumers were reached via TV, YouTube’s strengths are its targeting capabilities. Thanks to these targeting options, YouTube ads overproportionately reached families with children living at home – 62% versus TV’s 37%. On YouTube, 84% of the consumers reached were under the age of 50, while on TV only 54% were aged 50 or younger. YouTube also overproportionately reached people with higher incomes (66%) than TV (57%). Importantly, 28% of YouTube reach was incremental to TV reach.


YouTube delivers sales impact and better return on investment

Although the reach of the TV campaign was much higher than the reach via YouTube, when it came to the bottom line, the YouTube campaign proved hugely efficient, contributing a 25% share of short-term sales generated through media but with only a 7% share of the gross media spend. Based on single-source measurement of purchases and media consumption, GfK used regression analyses to quantify the sales effect. This showed that the campaign on YouTube yielded a higher probability of purchase than TV – a 26% uplift compared to TV’s 7%. Meanwhile, the short-term sales impact of the YouTube campaign was 3.7 times higher than TV.


While more frequent contacts had minimal bearing on the short-term sales uplift rate for YouTube, TV demonstrated a much higher saturation effect. YouTube also provided a longer-lasting sales effect – up to five weeks – in contrast to TV, where the effect was more short-lived. Overall the net mid-term return on investment from YouTube was 3.5 times higher.

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