Martin Walthert: "We focus on real living environments"

Martin Walthert from Galaxus and Scott Little from YouTube provide insights into the Long Form category of the YouTube Leaderboards 2023, with a focus on Galaxus' winning spot "Fitness Journey". The conversation reveals YouTube's benchmark strategies for high-impact creatives and Galaxus' innovative approaches to redefining the boundaries of traditional YouTube advertising. presents this Tech Talk with Martin Walthert, CMO Digitec Galaxus AG and Scott Little, Agency Sales Manager YouTube in full length as a videocast as well as in a slightly shortened version in written form right here.


m&k The YouTube Ads Leaderboard 2023 offers interesting insights into the three categories of bumper ads, short-form videos and long-form videos. We have already published the Leaderboard 2023 here at Scott Little, could you briefly explain the three categories?

Scott Little: With pleasure. We have the bumper ads, short 6-second spots, ideal for quick offers. Then there are the short form videos, 10 to 30 seconds long, which already offer more scope for content. And finally the long form videos, anything over 30 seconds, which represent the true art of storytelling.


How are the winners determined?

Scott Little: We use data from YouTube, taking into account organic and paid views, interactions and comments. This data forms the basis for the ranking.


Today we are focusing on the longform category, in which Galaxus won with the "Fitness Journey" commercial. Martin Walthert, what makes this commercial stand out?

"Fitness Journey" is part of a format that we introduced last year. It is based on our original creative platform, where we take common viewing habits, often from advertising or abstract wishful thinking, and then add a surprising twist. In the process, you experience something more or less comical, or simply normal life with all its facets.



What is the novelty?

In the past, we often took normal TV commercials and published them on YouTube in the same or slightly modified versions. The success on the digital channels was sometimes better, sometimes worse. Now we have developed a new format that is based on the same mechanism as the TV commercials, but makes much greater use of the ideas and visual world of the respective platform, such as YouTube in this case.


And how would you describe this for "Fitness Journey"?

"Fitness Journey" plays with the habits of influencers who want to show off their exercises, emphasize their health and perhaps also sell something or market themselves. It uses a visual language that is familiar to many, and that's where we start to quickly immerse ourselves in a different reality."


Advertising Week: Scott, could you explain YouTube's ABCD benchmark model and how it applies to the "Fitness Journey" spot?

Scott Little: The ABCD impact concept comprises four main factors. A stands for generating attention, which the commercial successfully achieves through an unexpected twist. B stands for branding, which is clearly achieved through the presence of Galaxus and the display of products. C stands for Connect, where the commercial uses humor to create an emotional connection with the audience. And D stands for Direct, where the commercial offers a clear call to action to make a purchase.


Werbewoche: What role does YouTube play in Galaxus' overall media mix?

Martin Walthert: YouTube enables us to reach our target group effectively as more and more people are online. Our budget for online video formats is therefore growing continuously, and we are testing and optimizing more and more specific formats for the platform.


Which advertising formats are currently particularly successful on YouTube?

Scott Little: Ads on YouTube Shorts have established themselves well in the Swiss market as they can convey a clear message in a short space of time. We also see a trend towards the integration of AI in order to design and play out campaigns more efficiently.


Martin, how does testing new formats fit into the budget planning?

Martin Walthert: We are increasingly allocating budgets more flexibly and testing new formats with small start-up budgets before investing more based on their performance.


How are the performance of YouTube and TV measured?

Martin Walthert: YouTube, like other channels, can be measured relatively well individually, while determining the overall performance and value contribution of different channels remains a challenge.


Scott Little, YouTube and Martin Walthert, Digitec Galaxus AG in a tech talk with Werbewoche editor Beat Hürlimann


What are your tips for agencies?

Scott Little: Creative agencies should consider from the outset where the clip will be played and incorporate best practices for each platform. Media agencies should integrate testing and adjust budgets according to the results achieved.


How do you see the role of "Fitness Journey" in the marketing funnel?

Martin Walthert: The commercial is mainly about brand awareness and emotional connection. It is not about direct sales, but about presenting our brand in a humorous way.


How do you stick to the original concept when developing new ideas?

Martin Walthert: We have learned that it is important not to get too complicated and to concentrate on the essentials. A clear focus on the viewing habits of the target group also helps us.


How does advertising work for Galaxus in Germany?

Martin Walthert: The advertising works in a similar way to that in Switzerland, with humorous elements and the highest possible recognition value.


What lessons have you learned from the Leaderboard 2023?

Scott Little: The importance of high recognition value and the integration of tests into campaign planning are crucial. AI will also play a greater role in the future.


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