Sidesteps possible downfalls in online video advertising

Measurement and creativity is a key to creating a great online video ad.

Posted on Jan 17, 2014 by YuMe

The market for online video ads has never been bigger, and it is only going to continue to expand. However, The Guardian's Chris Smith wrote that a recent online panel of experts voiced doubt about certain areas that could hold the market back from true growth. One big one is consumers who are used to these ads and readily utilize the adblock feature of their browser.

Companies will likely have to be far more creative in their approach to crafting video advertisements, as Zach Weiner, founder of Emerging Communications, said there are many more online, and people may be getting sick of the same-old same-old.

"An increase in consumers watching digital video advertising means there is bound to be a desensitizing nature," he said. "Far more video-based ads being watched diminishes mind share, making it difficult for any one ad to stick out."

Vincent Flood, editor-in-chief of Video Ad News, said ad-blocking affects 10 to 25 percent of impressions on the Internet. How can this be overcome? Aside from a possible technical solution that companies can implement, giving people using adblock the option to pay for ad-free content may be a better solution, Flood stated.

It may also take simply crafting a better online advertisement, meaning the company cannot get lazy in how it presents itself and must think of creative ways to get its message across. The Social Media Examiner said businesses also cannot forget the basics of advertising, meaning a campaign must be created, there should always be a call to action and a sales pitch should not be made in the video. "Sales clutter," as the website calls it is everywhere and more likely to get a viewer to click away. Instead, videos should discuss solutions to problems users may have or find a way to appeal to users while not hard-selling them.

Start measuring more effectively
A big reason online video ads may fail is due to lack of analysis and measurement. If advertisers and marketers take the approach for testing and metrics in every other area of the industry, why not video ads as well? Dipesh Morjaria, business director for multimedia at Guardian News & Media, said brands need to start looking at "gross rating points" to know how well their online ads are doing.

"GRPs are a language that TV buyers understand, and to talk about online video in terms of GRPs means that you then have a common measurable currency," Morjaria said. "It's not ideal, but it's a very big step towards recognition by the TV buyers of metrics for online video that they understand [and can compare]. It's a short-term solution to getting more TV money into online video in the short term. Once it's in, the measurement and engagement data will float to the top."

According to a recent report from BrandAds, advertisers are spending a lot on online advertising, topping $4 billion in 2013 after a 41-percent growth. This is poised to grow to $9 billion by 2017, but the company said these organizations are not keeping pace with the need to measure and analyze these ads. Approximately 60 percent of online video advertisers said they have "basic" measurement techniques, but they still do not have more in-depth tools to see how effective their campaigns are with users.

Of those who do have these tools, more than half said they spent too much on them. This is an area of online video ads that will need to improve over the next year, as measurement is a key for knowing what must change and stay the same regarding a campaign. Fixing this should help organizations improve their return on investment.