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Thursday, June 27, 2013

8 Very Important Metrics for Online Video Engagement

In our last post about this topic, we have talked about how particular engagement measurements are in online video,  and how the industry is evolving to reach what advertisers need regarding these measurements.

Watching is not only enough anymore: videos became a tool of social interaction and they need to be liked, shared, and are part of an online universe that determines the digital personality of its viewers. Video messages are more powerful because they help viewers to retain information in a way any text would never do. That’s only one of the reasons video metrics are different from display ads, for instance.

Of course engagement metrics such as shares, ratings and likes should be closely monitored, but not only before or during playback: the new way of aligning marketing purpose with customer feedback is tracking what the user did immediately after viewing. These are known as active and passive video metrics and will give a complete and detailed analysis of how a video ad performs. 

Besides the usual impressions, views and clicks, here is a list of 8 items that advertisers and media in general should really be aware of: 

1. Play Rate: it measures if the video was actually viewed once it was loaded. It helps checking the graphic appeal of the video, if the preview image is working and if the still image is striking  enough for the user to click on it. It also tells if the platform where the video is hosted is good for viewing. 

2. Player Load Times: If the Play Rate is low, it might be because the player takes a long time to load  (or doesn’t load at all) once the viewer clicks on it. Some platforms already allow to track load times and both metrics are connected – if Player Load Times is slow, it will automatically bring total views down.

3. Playthrough Rate: The backbone of all video strategy, the playthrough rate will tell how much time a viewer spent watching the video. Views alone just can’t tell anymore if a video worked in a world driven by content, so playthough rate is here to solve this dilemma: was the content achieved? 

4. Conversion Rate: a very delicate metric, if combined with playthroughs, can give the approximate moment when viewer left the video and if there was time enough to make a purchase decision. 

5. Video SEO: For those that immediately thought that SEO is connected to Social Networks, think again and remember that YouTube, the biggest and known Video Platform is nothing else that a Video Social Networks that allows users to like, share, comment and interact with each other. SEO though works a little bit different for videos, since videos do not include keywords. So how to know which keywords improve video views? Go back to 1998 and insert the right keywords in titles and tags. Simple.

6. Video Sharing: Seems obvious but it‘s not. How many people share a video? And where? Many platforms like YouTube can show how many shares a video received and the share-ability of other social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, etc. Also, it can track the share in each social network and the second-hand views. A full map of how it was received and how it became potentially viral. 

7. Video Distribution: It determines which video network drives the most views and visits to the site of the video advertiser. 

8. Content Detail: The last but not the least important, for sure it is the most subjective one - this is about what kind of video delivers the best result. Meaning, what has the most effective content for viewers/customers. There are a thousand ways of doing this, from the simplest to the most creative ones: for example, you can track if a shorter or a longer ad performs best, or if a woman or a man presenting the product is more appealing. 

It is clear to see that engagement is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow when talking about the new way of measuring online video ads. But while the industry keeps searching for the perfect metric for video ads, completion, shares, content related, and all the derivatives for sure are a great choice to understand better the wonders of online video engagement. 


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