About forecasts in Reach Planner

Reach Planner provides a forecast for how your media plan might perform, based on your desired audience, budget, and other settings such as geographic location and ad formats (“product mix”). Forecasts are modeled on trends in the ad market and the historical performance of similar campaigns run in the past. They’re also based on Google Ads policies that are included in your Reach Planner settings.

To capture recent trends, forecasts are based on the most recent data available from a time period equal in length to your campaign’s planned dates, up to 92 days. For example, if your campaign is set to run for a 5-day period that includes weekdays and weekend days, your forecast will be modeled on the previous 5-day period that includes weekdays and weekend days.

Note: Your forecast may reflect seasonal changes if your media plan includes auction ad formats such as YouTube in-stream ads. The overall cost of winning the ad auction may be different depending on the time of year when you plan to run your ads (for example, during the holiday season).

Updates to our unique reach models

Google uses samples from historical advertising data to generate forecasts in our forecasting tools such as Reach Planner, regularly adjusting estimates based on the most recent available data. Effective October 2021, we improved our underlying reach and demographic model with updated census, digital, and YouTube population data sources. A similar update was made in June 2021.

These updates to the census, digital, and YouTube populations improve the overall accuracy and consistency of our forecasting tools and will be reflected in planning tools like Reach Planner. Overall, this model update better represents YouTube’s user community, and will help you to more accurately plan your campaigns.

As a result of this update, you may notice changes in census, digital, and YouTube population sizes, along with demographic distribution shifts in some countries. Certain metrics, such as on-target % reach, target rating points (TRPs), and cost per target rating point (CPPs), are calculated using these numbers. These may contribute to differences when comparing similar forecasts generated prior to this update.

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