What can advertisers expect from YouTube this year? Human vetting of the most-watched content, more signals from the rest of Google’s services, influencers on-tap and shorter ad formats.

That is according to Tara Walpert Levy, the video platform’s agency and brand solutions VP.  We spoke with her Monday after the MediaLink NewFronts kickoff breakfast hosted by Google and YouTube.

After the PewDiePie scandal and others, ad buyers are looking toward YouTube for assurances the ads they buy will be placed against safe content.

That may be difficult for a service which receives uploads totalling 300 hours every minute. But Levy has answers.

Last year, YouTube added Google Preferred, a sub-set of the platform’s top 5% of channels and videos. “That offering enabled us to really be part of the upfront together with television,” she tells Beet.TV.

But YouTube is planning other initiatives. “We are having human reviewers who are helping to make brands very comfortable that this is the most vetted content on YouTube,” Levy adds.

And now advertisers in the Preferred tier will also be allowed to use targeting cues from viewers’ online behavior as shown across other Google services.

Influencer marketing is back on the agenda at this NewFronts, if, post-PewDiePie there might be some concern. Levy says YouTube’s FameBit initiative allows brands to do so “in a lighter-touch way”.

Next up – popularizing shorter ads.

“There have been a lot of brands who took advantage of (creative freedom) for much longer form ad,” Levy says. “(But sometimes) people’s tolerance or enthusiasm was actually only for shorter ads.

“So, we launched the six-second ad, which has had tremendous take up by brands with very strong performance. One of the things that spawned was adoption of that format across our ecosystem both in digital and in television, and so we’re excited now that brands have more opportunity to connect with people when they’re really engaged and leaning in and in a way that feels enhancing rather than interrupted.”

This video is part of Beet.TV’s coverage of the Digital Content NewFronts 2018.  The series a co-presentation of Beet.TV and the IAB.   Please see additional videos from the series on this page.   

Digital Content NewFronts 2018, presented by the IABTagged ,