Digital Video Ads – Maximize Your Investment

According to eMarketer, digital video ads are the fastest-growing area of programmatic investment—it will grow 204 percent this year.

In addition, viewability rates are also on the rise, says Q4 2014 research by Integral Ad Science. The percentage of U.S. online video ads that were in-view that quarter reached 39 percent, a 9 percentage point quarter-over-quarter increase.

To capitalize on these opportunities, several dynamics must be addressed to ensure maximum return on your investment. Here are three factors for brand marketing professionals to consider as part of their video ad campaigns.

Bring the Art Back to Video Ads

– People watch video now more than ever before. This behavioral shift makes one thing very clear: artistry must reign supreme.

– Branded online video content provides the luxury of flexibility when it comes to the narrative—and usually comes with a higher budget, as well. A warning, though: Since branded video ads need to meet specific criteria to increase conversion—such as keeping between 60 and 90 seconds, and presenting a clear call-to-action—the structure can easily become the focus of the asset. Don’t forget that you are still developing a piece of creative!

– For video ads to stand apart and to have a long-term impact on brand awareness, artfulness must be your guiding factor.

Look for Chances to Enhance Brand Awareness Across Your Asset Portfolio

The significance of creating platform-specific assets and upholding brand continuity cannot be overstated. There are proven points to aid conversion across multiple channels and varying platforms.

Adhering to your brand can be challenging in the face of encouraged (and proven) formulaic structures and tone of voice.

No matter what, it is an absolute necessity to maintain message consistency in today’s multichannel world. Although marketers must treat various channels differently to accommodate and exploit their nuances, ultimately the consumer is channel blind, so messaging should be the same across all mediums and formats for a campaign to succeed.

Brand guidelines are often either vague in relation to video ads (not considered as a separate requirement) or too restrictive (copy-pasted from reference to still design.) But, to create a halo effect your assets must all tie together.

Far too often, we see organizations repurposing assets. Rarely does this corner-cutting technique work well. Upon receipt of a brief for any kind of video project, it is critical to ensure you understand the potential for the client to broaden their spend across different assets and platforms so that if your video shoot is a unique one-off event with specific contributors, you are aware of the necessary assets needed to support a wider campaign.

Understand How Your Video Ads are Viewed

Understanding the motivation and type of device your target audience uses to watch video should play a strong role in asset production. Not only are the device’s spec important, but you need to consider associated user habits.

There are three common digital video advertising formats:

– Traditional pre-roll and mid-roll video advertising
– Video advertising in expandable display banners
– Video ad creative that resides inside a standard-sized display-advertising unit
– With such varying types of display, it’s essential that your assets be purpose-built—not just with regard to file size and aspect ratio, but also structurally in terms of the story and narrative.

For example, if your videos are on YouTube, annotations are a great way to keep your audience in the YouTube environment. However, annotations are not consistent on mobile devices. If your only call-to-action is for viewers to click through to another video but your main audience watches video on a mobile device, you have a mismatch.

Or, perhaps your pre-roll is a large HD file. That could provide a bad user experience on a cellular connection. By having a lower-quality version available, you can mitigate that risk.

To maximize the efficiency of your video ads, make sure you understand the motivation and viewing habits of your audience.

Knowing what these factors mean to you as a video content producer is a requisite for success.