What the year-end YouTube Ads Leaderboard tells us about the future of video advertising
About a year ago, I was stranded in my driveway with a very unhappy newborn in one arm and a very uninstalled car seat in the other. What did I do? I picked up my phone and searched on YouTube for help. I clicked on a promoted video created by my car seat's manufacturer, hit play, followed its step-by-step instructions and installed the seat in three minutes. In my moment of need, an ad saved the day.
Social video is everywhere - every time you check Facebook these days it turns out one of your friends has been “Live” or posted a video update. When you need to put together furniture you “YouTube“ it, when you’re out on a Saturday night, you post videos on Snapchat.
But social video is much more than putting together Ikea furniture or watching how your friends spend their evenings.
Facebook and Snapchat are each serving billions of individual video views per day, while YouTube reported recently that people are now watching a billion hours of content on their platform every twenty-four hours.
Video is a popular form of content for brands, but live streaming makes it even more enticing.
According to The Daily Dot, Periscope generated about 51,000 tweets during its March 26 release, and Meerkat—which was released Feb. 27—garnered more than 200,000 tweets about the app by the end of March.
As social media users—including celebrities and brand managers—flock to these apps, the buzz grows. According to Alex Pettitt, there were more than 36,500 tweets about Periscope for Android on its May 28 release, compared with 136 the day before.
Berserking teen girls may forever be a staple of Vidcon, but the YouTube stars they worship have done a lot of growing up in the past year. And in turn, so has their industry.
Being a YouTube creator is blossoming into a bona fide grown-up business right before our eyes. As young creators mature into savvy entrepreneurs, the ecosystem is maturing along with them — with industry standards and a multichannel network landscape that’s supportive and thriving.
Though they're just starting to settle in, it's a far cry from the parasitic deals and chaotic, Wild West feel of those early years.
While YouTube is the dominant platform when it comes to video SEO, the video offerings on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Snapchat shouldn't be ignored.
By now it likely you've heard that YouTube is the second most popular search engine after Google in the U.S. and probably globally. That's a lot of visibility and SEO/Social opportunity. But I urge you to think beyond YouTube in your video SEO and social strategy.
With hits like Purina's Dear Kitten (approaching 14.7 million views), Purina's A Cat's Guide To Taking Care of Your Human (5.8 million views and counting) and Clean & Clear's Awkward Things We All Do In Our Teens But Would Never Admit (almost at 1.8 million views), BuzzFeed Video is arguably one of the biggest names that produces millennial-targeted branded content.
"These are viewers who have actively decided that this is a piece of content that speaks to them—and it happens that it is conjunction with a brand. I think that's what the next level of branded video is about: really tapping into things like emotion and identity. When you can create that piece of content that speaks to somebody about they're going through, it's going to resonate better," said Jonathan Perelman, gm of video at BuzzFeed.
AT&T Inc. and the Chernin Group are nearing a deal to acquire a majority stake in Fullscreen Inc., a popular YouTube video network, a source close to the transaction said.
The deal between Fullscreen and Otter Media, a joint venture of AT&T and Chernin, would put the valuation of the company at $200 million to $300 million, said the source, who was not authorized to comment on the transaction.
Coca-Cola has enabled the cardboard packaging of its 12 packs to be transformed into a virtual reality headset that holds a smartphone.
Video and social complement each other in many ways. Here are some tips that will ensure your marketing strategy leverages the links between the two.
Between the NBA's 3.5 million followers on Instagram, a General Electric (GE) Vine that received 25,000 likes, and an EA Sports video that generated more than 8 million YouTube views in a single month, one thing has become clear: social sites are where brands, and brand videos thrive. Marketers are using online video to engage consumers, yes. But it's social media they rely on to build and sustain their user base.
Facebook's new look-alike audiences feature lets marketers replicate the makeup of existing targeted audiences in new territories. The platform is also letting marketers cross-post videos from other Pages as long as they get permission from the original poster.
Facebook is rolling out new tools for video publishers. Starting today, the social networking company is introducing enhancements for content creators that include an update to its video upload system and a new Video Library. The company said in a blog post that these offerings will give users better customization and control over their content. These features will be available globally over “the coming weeks.”
Facebook and Twitter aren't the only companies pushing forward with video ads this year.
Flipboard, a popular social news reading app, is planning to introduce video advertising in September, CEO Mike McCue announced during an appearance at a ReadWrite event in San Francisco on Wednesday night.
The first video advertiser on the platform will be Chanel, with more advertisers to come later.
Humor is a potentially powerful weapon in a brand’s arsenal, but they must be savvy when they wield it in video form. That means in part creating relatable content that isn't too long and tells a brand’s story.
Laughter is often said to be the best medicine, and when it comes to digital marketing, it certainly presents unique opportunities for consumer engagement.
Like the social outcast who discovers he can make the star quarterback laugh and finds himself suddenly catapulted into the upper echelons of high-school society, a funny branded video can quickly engage an audience and raise a brand's social currency.
LinkedIn is allowing its network of 500 Influencers to post 30-second videos to their feeds on the platform, and it will produce video interviews with people like Bill Gates. Videos will be sorted by topic so that users can search for ones relevant to their interests, and they will not contain ads for now.
Hometalk has recently built a video presence on Facebook, with one spot that shows an environmentally-friendly way to clean an oven attracting over 38 million views -- a significantly better performance than the brand's experience on YouTube. "A lot of media organizations have struggled on YouTube," said Josh Topolsky, the former digital head at Bloomberg, noting that organizations wish YouTube was more like a social network.
It’s never been easy for advertisers to get people to pay attention to them. It’s even harder when millions of people literally can’t hear their commercials.
But in a world where Americans are consuming more and more Web video on mobile phones, or in Web environments where video ads play without sound–particularly onFacebook–brands and top creative executives are having to adjust quickly.
It was around 2007 that the concept of content marketing really took the marketing world by storm. The notion that brands could gain audiences' trust, entertain, educate, and invite them into their worlds through content, rather than simply ads, was almost unprecedented. Fast-forward to today -- creating free content is not just a marketing strategy, it's essential for all brands to successfully drive awareness, engagement, and loyalty.
Now, content marketers are upping the ante yet again with real-time marketing...
With the new offering, announced at The Daily Mail's NewFront event yesterday, Snapchat's publishing partners can run 10-second ads on Discover.
Snapchat's latest ad offering, 10-second video ads, will run between articles and videos on Discover at a rate of $0.02 per view.
Online video now plays an increasingly key role in strategic marketing, as brands across myriad industries produce original, more emotionally driven content. And as video grows in importance, so, too, will be the ability to measure its value.
Viral publishers, seeing fewer Facebook clicks, shift focus to video
YouTube topped such venerable brands as Oreo and Disney as the most loved among children in market research firm Smarty Pants' latest Brand Love study of children 6 to 12. "Based on kids' attention spans now, [YouTube has] the type of content they really crave," said analyst Blair Fischer.
You guys are about to become famous,” Gary Vaynerchuk told young, popular Vine video creators during invite-only meetings in May 2013 in New York and Los Angeles. “Be prepared for that journey, and figure out how to navigate through those things.”
Vaynerchuk was pitching producers of viral video clips to join his new talent-driven production company, GrapeStory, founded with partner Jerome Jarre. GrapeStory produces clips for major brands like General Electric, Samsung, Unilever and Virgin Mobile, companies that pay up to $25,000 per six-second video to place sponsored posts on Vine, Instagram and Snapchat. The 25 popular video creators on GrapeStory’s talent roster get an 80 percent cut from each clip they make.
Think of legacy media brands (as you probably often do) and some seemingly stodgy names come to mind. Newsweek. The Chicago Tribune. CBS News.
These companies and products have largely lost the Internet wars, at least so far. Their audiences have aged, and they have failed to change their product or their ways of distributing it. Revenue and prestige have both sagged. Others brands, meanwhile—like The New York Timesor NPR—are still struggling, but they seem to have fared better.
As we near the end of 2014, here's a look at what social media marketing trends brands need to be on the lookout for in the coming year.
Depending on when you read this, there are about 60 days left in 2014. Here's what we're advising our client brands at Friend2Friend to be thinking about for their 2015 plans.
Trend 1: It's Increasingly a Mobile-First World
Not only is the age of the big smartphone here, but more people simply are spending more time on mobile. In the U.S., carriers' shelf-space for devices with 4.7-inch or larger screen displays increased from 4 percent to about a third in 2014 alone, matching a sales growth - larger-screen phones now account for more than one-quarter of all sales, according to NPD Group.
Twitter really wants publishers to embed Vines (its short, looping videos) into their sites, so today it released a WordPress plugin that makes it easier to do so.
Built on top of the Vine oEmbed API, the new official Vine plugin for WordPress lets users embed a Vine simply by pasting in the URL. More, from Twitter:
A year ago, Twitter released a new video ad option called First View, which gives marketers the opportunity to ensure their Promoted Video will be the first ad their target audience sees when they log onto Twitter for the first time on any given day.
As explained by Twitter:
“First View’s exclusive placement enables brands to achieve “Love at First View,” getting attention at the top of the timeline when users are at their most receptive.”
Viewability matters when it comes to digital advertising -- if ads are more likely to be seen, they are more likely to be effective -- but what is the relationship between viewability and certain branding metrics such as purchase intent, message recall and product awareness?
According to TubeMogul, a programmatic video ad platform, serving ads on sites with higher viewability rates can nearly double purchase intent -- and boost message recall and product awareness as well. TubeMogul’s research comes from over one million streamed video ads.
TubeMogul divided the sites the ads were viewed on into two categories: one half with better viewability rates and one half with worse.
Vine is today introducing a new layer of the service called Vine Kids. It’s meant to be a safe, kid-friendly space for a younger audience to play around with the app and watch vines.
The app pulls from the millions of Vines being created on the platform and chooses ones that are appropriate for children. The interface of the Kids section of the app has also been tailored to be more fun for children, showing a new Vine each time the user swipes left or right and playing “quirky” sounds each time the user taps the screen.
YouTube is the third most trafficked website behind Google and Facebook, with at least 2,777,777 videos being viewed in just a minute.
What else happens in 60 seconds? YouTube makes an estimated $10,654.49; at least 1,388 channel subscriptions are formed; and 100 hours of videos are uploaded.
This just shows how obsessed with video content we are.
Take a look at this infographic created by YouTubeDownloader
illustrating what happens in a YouTube minute.
Roughly 6 in 10 US adults say they watch videos when they visit a brand website with video content, and 4 in 10 prefer watching a brand video over reading the same information, per results from a survey [download page] conducted by Levels Beyond. The study results add to a growing body of research suggesting that consumers have a healthy appetite for video marketing, with numerous surveys (such as this one) indicating that online product videos boost consumers’ purchase likelihood. But what types of videos do consumers want to see?
According to the Levels Beyond survey, consumers are most interested in how-to, instructional or tutorial videos (67%), followed by:
You’ve read a million list posts on how to do Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and (insert another social media network here) for your business. In search of faster growth, more engagement and that elusive return on engagement, you’ve tried tactic after tactic and tool after tool but it’s just not working the way you’d hoped.
Tactics can be great. And tools can save you time. But if you lose sight of this one simple principle, it’ll be all for naught: Social media at its core is social. It’s about real relationships with real people.
Social media is no longer the new kid on the marketing block. And, it has firmly assumed the rank of an essential channel for B2C and B2B marketers alike.
One of the biggest changes in social media marketing this past year has been its emergence as a major player for advertising dollars. Where social media was once seen as almost a performance-metric free zone that marketers engaged with almost out of a fear of missing out, it’s now a marketing channel that delivers highly targeted audiences, innovative ad formats and a wide range of measurements depending on the social venue serving the ad.
But why is social media attractive for advertising?
In a play to keep its stars from defecting to other platforms, YouTube is providing its top creators with "millions of dollars" in funding to produce new content.
Yesterday, the platform announced that it will provide provide funding for some of its most popular stars – such as fashion star Bethany Mota and Epic Rap Battles of History – enabling them to create higher-budget content and experiment with video format.
"Now, we feel the time is right to make another important investment in our creators. That’s why we’ve decided to fund new content from some of our top creators, helping them not only fulfill their creative ambitions but also deliver new material to their millions of fans on YouTube," wrote Alex Carloss, YouTube's head of originals, in a blog post announcing the news.