How Marketers Can Benefit from Video Ad Engagement

Marketers value engagement because its presence indicates that a campaign has connected in some way with the target audience. However, while engagement is compelling, 10 marketers might define it in 10 different ways.

But engagement is more than a buzzword. As the interactive ad format that most attracts brand marketers, much is riding on internet video advertising—mainly money and audience attention. As spending on online video rises and takes a bigger slice of the display ad pie, marketers must be confident that they are spending wisely. Engagement may be difficult to quantify abstractly, but is key to the worth of video ads.

“All effective advertising today—not just video—requires some degree of audience engagement,” said David Hallerman, eMarketer principal analyst and author of the new report “7 Trends for Video Advertising Engagement.” “However, unlike some metrics that provide real-time insight into ad performance, much audience engagement does not happen in the moment with the ad. Nor can it be measured automatically. Instead, it’s a process over time.”

The most likely campaign objective for online video advertising is brand awareness, a baseline component of engagement, according to advertisers and agencies surveyed by Tremor Media and DM2PRO. Close behind brand awareness is brand engagement itself (which some define separately, as in this survey—further indication that the definition of engagement can be fuzzy).

For video ads, marketers use various concepts to identify engagement, including server- and survey-based metrics, traditional brand health metrics, social video-sharing, interaction rates and more. They can use several strategies to increase or influence engagement, like which websites to advertise on, how to target campaigns, and the length and creative of marketing videos.

“Before deciding which types of engagement to focus on, marketers first should examine what they want to achieve for their brand, who might best respond to their message and how comfortable they are with relaxing control over the ways consumers relate to their brand,” said Hallerman.

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