YouTube Red? YouTube Dead.

  1. Premium reality TV is not a business model. PewDiePie may be worth millions of free views and ads, but his content is derivative (it works from other content, in his case video games) and is based on mass exposure, much like drivetime radio or reality TV. There’s no premium value there. Basing a channel on premium content from stars like mighty PewDiePie is thus immediately a tough sell.
  2. Did nobody on the branding team, consultancy or whomever was involved stop to think about the similarity of the name to porn streaming site RedTube? Nobody?
  3. The hookup to Google Play Music is nice, but not enough people really know what that is compared to Pandora, Spotify or Apple Music. So the upsell is not obvious (and the brand names are complicated).
  4. It doesn’t have the presence. You can rent or buy movies and such on YouTube already. Nobody actually knows that though. (You or I do, but not outside of us.) Moreover YouTube doesn’t offer anything standout for that experience to vault it over competition, so it will remain a background choice.
  5. The brand association is all wrong. It’s YouTube, the service of funny cat videos and Gangnam Style. It doesn’t automagically become something that most people ever consider subscribing to even if it does have large viewing numbers.
  6. Ad free is not worth $10 a month. It’s worth maybe $4 a month.
  7. YouTube doesn’t have the shows (yet). Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and others are long in the business of funding premium content, to the point that YouTube is VERY late getting into that game. It feels like the horse has already bolted out of that gate.

All in all, needs to be bolder.

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