Mobile native video advertising has transformed content marketing world in a big way. Brands are clamoring to get their video storytelling in high gear following brands who jumped on the video bandwagon long ago. Today, we are undergoing a forced feeding of video on Facebook with their autoplay strategy, and many of the posts in our feed consisting of video.
No wonder controversy has peaked, with talks of YouTube being second fiddle and the emphasis of video on other social platforms. There is no question – video is not only killing it for the brands, but every person is a video content author now. This is changing the way content is being created, shared, and consumed.
In a previous post, 5 ways to weaponize your mobile content marketing via native advertising, I addressed the channels and solutions brands must consider to scale their content marketing. Recently, major bets have been placed, such as Yahoo acquiring BrightRoll for $640 million and Fox acquiring TrueX for $200 million, making the importance of mobile video to the ad machines clear. Mobile, video, and native advertising are top priorities, according to top ad executives. Consumers have an insatiable appetite to consume mobile video. Now, the stage is set for mobile video and native advertising to erupt in the digital ad landscape.
Here are a Few Points Bolstering Mobile Native Video
- Native advertising hyper growth: From 2013 we have had a 29% growth with eMarketer projecting $3.1 billion in spend. Publishers are holding the fort, like Forbes and LinkedIN Pulse with their mobile app.
- The mobile platform is ripe: Smartphones are fueling this mobile video growth, powered by higher bandwidth on wireless networks, broader wi-fi access, incredible processing power, monster memory, high-definition screens, HD cameras, and killer optics. There are also a plethora of video editing apps making it easy to create and deploy high quality video on the spot and distribute it with just a click.
- Longer-form video is desirable: Consumers are shifting to rich experiences with greater tolerance to video advertisements. Greater than 20 minute video content grew 86% year over year and shorts from less than five minutes all the way to 20 min clicks experiences a 22% growth reported by FreeWheel.
We have now entered the trifecta of mobile, video, and native advertising, creating a great opportunity for new mobile native video delivery mechanisms. As this popularity builds for mobile native video, the brands and content creators who streamline delivery will ultimately win.
Advertisers obviously value a richer and immersive storytelling experience. As more publishers and brands move to native, they are shifting from short pre-rolls to longer form content. Facebook has fully capitalized on this movement, with 53% of its revenue from its mobile advertising and recently released a Premium Video Ads product. There is lots of news and quotes from experts around the move of content consumption on mobile. Here we highlight a sample set from a recent campaign running mobile native video ads:
The consumer is hungry for great content. The right placement of mobile native video makes a formidable strategy. In our Disney Planes case study, mobile native video produced 70% higher CTR over the desktop native unit of 26%. With 66% mobile users being more likely to interact with a video than those on a desktop demonstrate why there is some much talk on mobile first strategy . Consumers are highly trained now (like a Pavlovian dog) thanks to the many video apps and video enabled feeds.
When a video ad appears prompting interaction, consumers are more likely to participate due to the reward of great content. This drives the higher share volumes we see on experience based content. These results are very encouraging for brands developing cross-screen campaigns.
Trends in Video Ads on Top Brands
Analyzing thousands of brands and their video posting behavior along with consumer interaction creates unparalleled insights as to what brands need to do to win the game of mobile native video.
Here, we compare top brands and the volume of video they are creating along with the engagement on those videos. Don’t assume video plays is the best measurement of video effectiveness. Brands are looking for full consumption and engagement resulting from the content. The ratio of shares per post has been found to be a great measurement of comparing a brand’s consistency and quality factors.
The share per post ratio over the past year shows Fox News, PetFlow, and BBC News lead the way along with traditional video based TV news properties dominating the social video landscape. Where Women Get It Free is head to head with NBA! Those media outlets engineered to naturally produce video content will continue to see an increase in their dominance.
There are challenges at the moment with video chicanery such as autoplay and paying for plays that skew the real numbers, however, people commenting, liking, and sharing video provides hard attribution to go from. Be careful on plays, there are so many services out there that will get you PLAYS for cash, like the old days of buying friends and followers, but it’s hard to fake shares and authentic comments. Unfortunately, we’re seeing ad fraud in the billions and that’s coming to mobile native video. Facebook autoplay still playing an ad when hidden under the fold will not build confidence.
What’s it going to take to be in the top mobile video advertising game? If your brand is among one of the industries we have analyzed, the bar has been set very high.
The chart above provides a view into the amount of content required (video posts) and the reach / share levels of engagement required. The main takeaway question is does your CMO or CEO know the commitment level to be a top player in video?
Translating Big TV Spend to Mobile
Recent deal such as Target and Best Buy with True[x] clearly shows marketers are moving media spend from banners to the native ads. The data don’t lie with the response on native over social networks and other publishers preferring in context rich media, video, and visuals as part of the ad experience.
Likes on video is not the same action as sharing to your friends. Consumers willing to stamp their name on something with greater emotion tend to share or comment. That is why these tend to be the best hard attributions besides click to purchase. The WWE, UFC, MLB, and NBA skew towards male users where Women Get It Free, PetFlow, Prez Hilton, and The Voice skew female. It’s well know that females share more, and the data on video proves that to be true.
There has been a great deal of hullabaloo and hype about how Facebook has passed up YouTube, and how Yahoo is overtaking Twitter in mobile ads. Some have claimed it’s all lies. The reality is, consumers are sharing video in a big way. In fact, as the data has shown, there are more shares than likes on videos.
Video Usage Analysis on Mobile Native Video Advertising
Here are five ways brands can leverage these 2015 trends that will define high performance content marketing efforts and help brands get a jump on their mobile native video advertising strategy.
Agile Marketing and Real-Time Tool Explosion
The smart brands have created newsrooms and command centers, driving content creation to the next level with full on video production. Data will be a driving factor to the competitive advantage. Knowing what consumers engage with and what they click on is a gold mine. Many technologies enable you to understand your competitive content landscape.
Over the last four years, we have seen a steady increase in mobile activity due to native apps and responsive web content. 2014 was truly a breakout year with many experiencing as high as 60% and 70% shift to mobile. In 2015, brands must focus on useful mobile experiences for content and commerce. [pullquote]Think of what works best for mobile and where your consumers are consuming your content. [/pullquote]Content designers must realizing that not all consumer are in front of a TV. What are you looking to achieve on mobile and is the video designed for the mobile experience?
Mobile Video and Social will Demand TV Budgets
Mobile, social, and video are the hottest trends and will commandeer big spending as the quality and complexity of storytelling continues to rise. The consumer is mobile and the experience has to shift to that medium, making the challenge creative fit.
Engagement and Viewablity Videos Views
Marketers are increasingly being pushed for verifiable results over the simple view or play. Viewability is now a must-have for brands to be assured their content is being seen and engaged with.
Optimizing Video Ads for Device and Thumbnails
Marketers would be wise to customize ads for each device, because those type of ads drive the best results. This is backed up by a study from video advertising firm Innovid, which analyzed video ads over Crackle’s network consumer base. The study combined pre-roll and interactive video ads across auto, retail, CPG, entertainment, and travel for one-year period on desktop, mobile, and iPad. Optimized ads can deliver a six times increase in engagement, seven times boost in click-throughs, and a 25% rise in completion rates, the study reported. The thumbnail image is one of the most critical images because it is the first image consumers see. Studies show optimizing the thumbnail image can increase CTR’s from 5 to 30%.
A new startup called Neon coming out of Carnegie Mellon University is using advanced video analysis techniques to determine what thumbnail or text in combination would yield higher CTR. Working with IGN results have even gone as high as 59% increase on highly customized thumbnails based on cognitive sciences. Overall, brands will see the best results when an ad is optimized for the screen and the thumbnails are well crafted. Brands must prepare for the multi modal customer and engineer for omnichannel to stay in this high stakes poker game.
Facebook is using Premium video along with the auto play feature to push videos above all other posts. Their drive for video dominance is evident if you are on Facebook. In fact, Morgan Stanley projects Facebook video ads could to be worth $1 billion this year and rocketing to $5.5 billion by 2019. And now Facebook is creating a YouTube like experience going head to head with the more static nonsocial YouTube. We could be witnessing a huge shift.
Viewability and attention are the key measurements now. Brands what to know is their ads being engaged with. Google recently announced 56.1 percent of ads on the internet are not view-able. A revolution like editorial content mixing with native ads is now happening with video where rich media meets polished ad copy – all engineered as entertainment. As mobile native video takes hold there will be a best in class native ad structure. The melding of native ad content and video will give rise to a more interactive experience customer want to watch, willing to share and engage on.
Your Next Big Move
Over the last three years growth in brand mobile videos has skyrocket with 73% from 2013 and sees to top over $4.4 billion in 2018, and mobile video ads will grow almost five times faster than desktop. We will see a migration of desktop ads to mobile, which is a no brainer. And mobile video is just add water for advertisers’ video ad assets created for larger screens.
The number of videos does not extrapolate to overall levels of engagement, however. It’s easy to see the growth of top brands and their acceleration will continue as long as consumers keep consuming. Democratization the video creation and dissemination process has lowered the barrier for any size brand to enter and establish a video footing.
Loading video is now as easy as taking a picture. If a picture is worth a 1000 words with 30 frames a second and audio to boot makes 1,000,000 words or so, Right? The video selfies app’s funding demonstrates even VC’s are ready to capitalize on the fastest-growing sector of mobile advertising and is attracting big brands looking to leverage their heavy television media buys.
We’re quickly moving past the 15 and 30 second videos to full-length creative content streams. Mobile ad spend is growing rapidly, but brands who invest in mobile-ready solutions now will win. By getting ahead of the trend, brands will be able to understand, experiment with, and become market leaders in mobile advertising.
Have you integrated video into your content marketing? Share what is working in the comments below!
Featured Image: Anikei via Shutterstock