This is the year TV dollars start pouring into web
Well, maybe. After a couple of slow-growth years, the consensus is
that spending in web video will accelerate in 2010, perhaps as much
as 50%. Two online ad forecasts from eMarketer and Piper Jaffray
are putting the market at or around $1.5 billion, up from $1.1
billion in 2009. Anecdotally, advertisers that spent in video --
and particularly package-goods marketers -- appear to be doubling
down on video. Reckitt Benckiser, for example, which spent $20
million on web video in 2009, is said to be doubling its spend in
2010. Increasingly, the constraint on dollars moving isn't
reticence among marketers; it's a lack of inventory in premium
I have this hilarious ad; if I put it on the web, will
it go "viral"?
No. Anything can happen, but the odds are against any video
catching lightning in a bottle, unless there is some promotional
muscle behind it. Ads that catch on are generally supported by a
media buy, such as YouTube's "Promoted Videos, a video ad network,
or have some stealthy PR behind them working the angles on YouTube,
Facebook and Twitter. It's not cheap, but success means lowering
the effective CPM. Just ask Evian, whose Rollerskating Babies have
reaped more than 70 million views over the past year.
If consumers hate pre-roll ads, should I keep doing
Short answer: Yes, because studies show they are the most effective
video advertising on any platform. Longer answer: Think about your
strategy, because at least 15% of consumers that see your ad will
click away immediately. Keep them short, preferably under 15
seconds, and think about doing something creative, like allowing
viewers to choose the pre-roll they watch on sites such as YouTube,
Tremor Media and Hulu.
Where can I get analytics on how my video campaign is
You'll get plenty of stats from the publisher or ad network you're
working with, but check to see if they're partnered with an outside
provider and if they'll do some custom research for you. Break.com,
for example, works with Visible Measures, which can tell you all
kinds of cool things, such as when viewers decided your ad was
boring and clicked away. They'll also do some custom research, such
as a study under way for Warner Bros. on where movie trailers
Is it possible to get an equivalent TV buy on the
Yes, but perhaps not right away. If you're looking to trade a
30-second spot on "American Idol" for equivalent reach online, you
won't get it in an hour; it might take several days or weeks.
That's not a problem for package-goods advertisers, which typically
run campaigns for months at a time, but it is a problem for
entertainment advertisers, which need a short burst to drive
weekend box office. It also becomes more difficult if you want to
do some granular targeting, which further decreases the available
impressions. Yume, Tremor Media and others are all making it easy
for TV advertisers to shift budget to video using TV metrics such
as the Gross Ratings Point. The difference is TV guarantees it's
GRPs and in video, you get the impressions but unless it's
targeted, you may be hitting the wrong demo.
What kind of risk am I taking with my brand with all the
profane and off-color video out there?
Er, have you watched TV lately? The truth is some of the same
marketers wary of the web are happily sponsoring content on shows
such as MTV's "16 and Pregnant" or "Jersey Shore." But the truth
is, advertisers don't hold a few racy shows against a medium (TV)
or a network (MTV). They just buy around them. Cable faced the same
issues when it was a new medium; it took a leap of faith and now
marketers spend more dollars there than broadcast.
Is video advertising cheaper than TV?
It certainly can be, but it can also be quite a bit more expensive.
If you take existing 15- and 30-second spots and blast them across
ad networks, it can be very inexpensive. But add those to TV
content on TV.com or Hulu and you'll be paying higher rates on a
CPM basis than TV. Why? Less inventory and exclusivity within
shows, as well as a whole battery of studies that show online video
ads perform better. The most sophisticated video advertisers are
doing custom work for the web including branded entertainment. That
can be expensive, as is the media required to make sure the
audiences see it.