The Video Advertising Arms Race: Facebook vs. YouTube

You’ve seen it all over the headlines: Facebook video views are catching up to YouTube. In the last year alone, Facebook had 1.4 billion monthly active users compared to YouTube’s 1.3 billion. Although the difference is minor, the recent growth rate for Facebook video has risen dramatically; the reach Facebook has seen in native video views within the year is astounding. Facebook’s video platform launched just over a year ago, whereas YouTube launched a decade ago. Ampere found that 15% of Internet users across North America and Western Europe had watched a video on Facebook in the last month, and a sixth of those people had not watched a video on YouTube in that same time span. It seems the king of online video has finally met its match. YouTube is no longer the only major video platform.

It’s predicted that by the end of 2015, Facebook will have 2 trillion video views. That’s two-thirds as many as YouTube. And what’s more, Ampere determined that Facebook is more profitable than YouTube. Marketing Land wrote the following:

“Facebook’s challenge to YouTube is showing strength. Based on similar totals of monthly active users on the two networks, Ampere found that advertisers value Facebook inventory at a higher rate, $0.73 per MAU for Facebook vs. $0.28 for YouTube. That’s despite the fact that Facebook charges advertisers for views as short as three seconds in its autoplay environment while YouTube only charges when people view a view for about 30 seconds.”

Why is Facebook the preferred video advertising method? Even though Facebook charges advertisers after such a short view time, Facebook is ideal for content marketers before the launch of a product for creating brand awareness. That’s because Facebook videos are getting more likes and shares on the social network site compared to YouTube videos. Nonetheless, YouTube is still more advertiser friendly since the ads can be shown anytime during a video view. YouTube also has the feature TrueView, which allows users to skip an ad after only five seconds. It’s shown to be extremely effective, as advertisers don’t pay for a video if it’s skipped.

Even though Facebook lacks in some areas of video advertising, the company is looking ahead to the next market trend: mobile advertising. The Cisco index predicated that nearly three-fourths of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video by 2019. Mobile advertising is an enormous market that many advertisers have yet to tap in to. Facebook debuted its vision for mobile ads at Cannes Lions on Tuesday, June 23. It’s an intriguing idea and one that is a smart move for the company. Re/code wrote the following about Facebook’s mobile potential:

“Facebook’s future is mobile — it already has more than half a billion people whose only interaction with Facebook each month comes from a mobile device — and it’s giving marketers a hand in designing the very ad units the company will be selling them in a few months. Not a bad move… Of course, Facebook will also be tasked with walking the line between advertiser wants and user happiness. Users are rarely fond of advertising — although with Facebook the issue tends to be targeting more than anything — and it’ll be up to Facebook to ensure whatever ads they create strike the right balance.”

Despite Facebook’s video success, the company still has a long way to go when it comes to video advertising. Facebook does not offer pre-roll ads. Pre-roll ads are the commercials that appear prior to an online video.  If Facebook wants to remain competitive with YouTube the company will eventually have to incorporate these ads, which would allow for a more advertiser friendly format.

So just how fast has Facebook video grown within the past year? Business Insider UK compiled data about the state of social video from Socialbakers and found that brands have virtually stopped posting YouTube videos on Facebook. Beforehand Facebook native video launched just over a year ago, brands did publish their YouTube videos on Facebook. Last year, YouTube was the dominant video platform on Facebook. As you can see, that’s no longer the case.

While YouTube may not be the king it once was, it’s still the leading platform for online video. Although a Google exec said YouTube isn’t worried about Facebook’s native video expansion, the company must realize the threat Facebook poses. Still, YouTube is the second largest search engine thanks to Google, a feat not to be dismissed. But while YouTube is still in a strong position overall, Facebook and other video platforms are giving YouTube a run for its money. So what is the future of video advertising? Only time will tell.

Whether you choose to advertise on Facebook or YouTube, Viddyad is here to help. Create a video ad online in minutes. #EasyFastAffordable

The Facets of Smart Content

Great content begins with great food. Contently’s first West Coast Summit started off with a bang on June 9, 2015 at Tank 18 in San Francisco. After a tasty networking lunch, Joe Coleman, CEO and Co-Founder of Contently, opened the conference by discussing the intersection of what’s driving innovation in content marketing.

Coleman suggested that a combination of storytelling and technology is essential in order to create an effective marketing platform. Present marketers can reach consumers relatively easy and inexpensively due to modern technology. Consequently, he stressed the continued importance of storytelling, indicating that it still remains the core of successful content marketing. As Ben Plomion, SVP of Marketing at GumGum, stated, “Your content has to be so good that your competitors share it.”

So what generates great content? Coleman hit the nail on the head: storytelling. Stories are indispensable for brands because they indicate that the product a company builds is working. Successful storytelling is adapting to situations quickly, but not necessarily moving too fast. Moving too fasts results with mistakes made and poor content quality. Allie Townsend, Managing Editor at Facebook, declared, “The best stories are the ones that grab you.” This means taking the time to create interesting content rather than solely focusing on how quickly you can get new content out there. If you have nothing of value to add, don’t – original and personal storytelling beats hasty, irrelevant content.

Unfortunately, not all marketing platforms work no matter how creative the content is. Content marketing is a game of trial and error. Brands learn from their previous marketing strategies, understand where they went wrong, and try again. Deirdre Hussey, Director of Digital Marketing and Communications at Gap Inc., said “If you’re producing content that’s true to your core, you won’t find your brand in the wrong conversation.” Through experimentation and analysis, as well as research and development, brands will find what type of content works for them as long as they keep it original and meaningful.

The summit ended with Ben Parr, Author of Captivology & Co-Founder of DominateFund. Parr was the superstar of the evening and made many insightful points about the convergence of content and marketing. He supported long-form content, reiterating that it’s not just about the quick read. Marketers need to have something interesting to say. Parr also said, “People share content because it validates their identity [and] gives a sense of belonging.” Content that gets shared is fluent, novel and relates to identity. However, he also noted that content isn’t what’s changed – distribution has. Social media sites and other forms of Internet communication have revolutionized the way marketers approach their ad campaigns. As a result, Parr suggested “people should consistently experiment and see what their audience engages with.”

Viddyad CEO Grainne Barron attended the West Coast Summit and enjoyed listening to the refreshing approaches discussed by many of the Contently speakers. She described the summit as a “very lively, meaty and interactive event with great energy… I was very ‘contently’ with it.” The first summit was a great success and we can’t wait to see what’s in store next year.

Why Stock Video Improves Your Online Ad Campaign

The use of stock footage is normally branded as amateur and unprofessional, but these assumptions are misleading. Stock videos are advantageous for a number of reasons: they’re cost effective, efficient, and high quality. In fact, Hollywood filmmakers use stock footage quite frequently. Here are three reasons why you should incorporate stock footage in your online video advertising campaign:

It’s relatively inexpensive

When using stock videos, you eliminate a large portion of the overhead costs. No need for expensive cameras, film crews or extravagant, far-away locations. With production costs significantly lowered, there’s no reason not to use stock footage – if you don’t utilize it, then you waste valuable time and money.

You become the filmmaker

Why pay someone else to make your video? Stock footage empowers the creator to envision his or her own design. Oftentimes people pay video production companies for an outcome that they may or may not like. With stock footage and companies like ourselves, Viddyad let’s you see the finished product before you pay. You have an artistic vision, and we want to see your aesthetic concept achieved.

Find millions of stunning images

Our vast array of topics allows you access to millions of spectacular videos and images. Not to mention all our footage is shot and vetted by industry professionals, providing high-definition material you’ll love. Looking for images from around the world for your travel agent company? No problem, Viddyad has everything – there’s no need to try to film difficult shots. In addition, stock footage allows access to past events, so you’re not limited to only present-day film. Stock images and videos offer flexibility that supply you with appropriate footage for transition to help tell your own story.

So what are you waiting for?

Videos are everywhere – after all, by the year 2019 nearly three-fourths of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video. Video lets you reach the widest audience, advance your business online and dramatically increase sales. Make your own with Viddyad. Super easy. Super fast. Super affordable.

Online Ad Skipping: The Surprising Benefits of TrueView

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How is it advertisers can profit without viewers watching the entirety of their ads? That’s the brilliance of TrueView advertising.

TrueView allows YouTube users the option of skipping the advertisement after a mere 5 seconds. Although it seems counterproductive, a recent STRATA consumer report shows that 75% of respondents need only 3 seconds to identify the brand or product of an online video ad, while the other 25% need only one to two seconds.

With that being said, the first five seconds are crucial. It’s important to get right to the point – don’t waste time showing your branding. Instead, experiment with what drives viewers’ curiosity to continue watching the ad.

Benefits of TrueView

Why pay for an ad if no one watches it? The STRATA report also found that 41% of viewers hit “skip this ad” before they recognize the brand or product being sold. With TrueView, advertisers do not pay for an ad unless the viewer watches it, so there’s no need to spend money on an audience that’s not interested.

Since the percentage of ad-recalls for online video ads is much higher than TV (about 34%), advertisers learn which strategies work and which do not. Using YouTube Analytics, advertisers gain insight and track user engagement in order to make the appropriate adjustments. And for those that did view the video, YouTube says that “You can easily build a cookie list of people who viewed your video and use remarketing to show ads to these customers, wherever they are on YouTube or the Google Display Network.”

Online video ads can build a following. This means that once a user watches the video, he or she may continue to view another ad, subscribe to the channel, or share the video with a friend. YouTube uses these Earned actions to provide data about the relationships between its viewers and the advertisers, allowing the latter to develop and expand their ad campaign.

Feeling inspired? Create your own video ad in minutes with Viddyad.

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Twitter Tests Auto Play Video Ads

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Facebook introduced it in 2013, and now Twitter also wants to reap the benefits of auto-play by testing it on some of its videos. Initially Twitter is testing this limitedly; those in the US with iPhones and iPads will begin to see some videos play automatically on their newsfeeds. Similar to Facebook, the video will play without sound until the user decides to press ‘play’, introducing sound and a larger screen.

Twitter wants to determine whether people are more likely to actively click play and decide to watch a video, or if they would pay more attention to a video that they see playing automatically as they scroll through their feed.

The company’s testing doesn’t apply to all types of videos uploaded to Twitter. Videos from the 6-second video app created by Twitter and Vine videos will not be trialed for autoplay. The testing will however apply to promoted videos from the site’s Amplify program that is used by companies to distribute their videos to audiences outside of their following on Twitter.

When it comes to counting views, Facebook considers a video viewed after it has played for 3 seconds. So far Twitter counts a video as viewed once the play button is clicked. If a video ad is eye-catching, a viewer is more likely to have their attention grabbed and to continue watching a video once they see it playing. But of course you knew that right?

Try it out for yourself. Create a free video ad at viddyad.com today and post to Twitter.