How to build a powerful online video advertising strategy

OCT 10, 2021

Before thinking about channels, devices, or ad formats, the first step to building video campaigns is to pick the right audience for each objective

Indians have outdone their viewing hours by spending 10 hours 54 minutes weekly in viewing online video contents

Today we watch television transforming before our eyes. In just a few years, we have gone from watching TV at home to having content streamed live to any device anywhere, anytime, at our fingertips. We’re watching video content for many hours a week on our phones, laptops, desktops and tablets, smart TVs and other streaming devices—and this has caught the attention of marketers across the world.

The Covid-19 pandemic has dramatically changed consumer behaviour with respect to streaming video across all age groups. It is observed that on an average, an individual spends around 7 hours and 55 minutes viewing online video content, whereas Indians have outdone their viewing hours by spending 10 hours 54 minutes weekly in viewing online video content, according to the State of Online Video report 2020 by Limelight Networks.

Video viewing has taken a huge leap and has driven marketers to invest more in building video ad campaigns to reach consumers where they’re spending more of their time. At the same time, marketers are under pressure to prove return on investment and deliver business results like sales and revenues, building the most effective ad campaigns has held utmost importance. As consumers experience digital fatigue and their attention span has become even shorter, video ads can capture their attention across various channels and devices they use and lead them towards a purchase channel. To build a powerful Online Video advertising strategy, follow these five rules to meet your business goals:

Create a commerce media strategy

Commerce media is an approach to digital advertising that combines commerce data and intelligence to target consumers throughout their shopping journey and help marketers and media owners drive commerce outcomes (sales, revenue, leads).

To build a commerce media strategy for video, marketers and agencies must launch video ad campaigns that drive new customers to their first purchase with a full-funnel approach from awareness, consideration, to conversion, as well as campaigns that drive existing customers to discover more products or services and become repeat buyers and loyal customers, following a customer journey of consideration, conversion to loyalty.

As the customer journey becomes increasingly digital and the lines blur between shopping and other digital activities, the time between brand discovery and conversion is shrinking. Marketers with active online video campaigns for every stage of the purchase funnel are more likely to make a lasting impression on consumers across touchpoints and influence those rapid purchase decisions.

All these campaigns should ideally be running at the same time through the same technology partner to drive audiences from one stage of the customer journey to the next. This also gives marketers the ability to track audiences from their initial video exposure to click and conversion.

Build audiences first

Before thinking about channels, devices, or ad formats, the first step to building video campaigns is to pick the right audience for each objective.

Each campaign will engage a different audience and have its own set of key performance indicators (KPIs) depending on which part of the customer journey is being targeted. For example, for awareness campaigns, it is all about reaching more customers, but it is also important to narrow down your audience to the people who are most likely to buy your products or services using the data available to you.

Be channel, device and format agnostic

Once you build a campaign audience, the channels, devices, and ad formats for that campaign are all dependent on where that audience spends their time and where they’re most likely to view or engage with your ads.

Consumers all have different video viewing behaviour, and you must be able to reach them no matter where, when, or how they view video content. Rather than focusing on specific ad formats (like in-stream and outstream), focus on finding a video advertising solution that gives you access to a wide range of inventory sources through direct relationships with premium publishers and video streaming services.

Fuel-up conversations

The upsurge in the use of digital media has led most businesses to make their way to the online mode of action. Interlinking, optimising and automating a marketing video enables a higher web conversion rate. Additionally, manifesting videos on a landing page can be impeccably influential for a brand to generate profitable traffic.

Measure online video campaigns holistically

Measuring your video campaigns is an important part of your success, and just as important as following best practices when you are creating and setting up your campaign. Though your campaign will have its own set of KPIs, it is important to track how every campaign pushed customers down the purchase funnel and influenced business results like sales, revenue, and ROI. One such way is to view your marketing from a full-funnel perspective, it’s easier to see how video campaigns contribute to conversions, even if they are not directly driving them. The reporting you get through your advertising partner should show the flow of your campaign audiences from the first video view to the point of sale. This allows you to connect your advertising spend directly to sales.

For example, say a new customer watches your video ad during a show they are streaming via an OTT device. If that customer becomes part of your audience for a consideration campaign and then makes a purchase through a conversion ad, you can show that your OTT campaign had an impact on that sale.

The pandemic has changed the way consumers are utilising the digital space. From remote working, online education, to video streaming, there has been a drastic boost on content consumption. It is safe to say that online video advertising is here to stay and will only scale up with the expanding video content consumption, making it an optimum opportunity for marketers to invest and stay ahead of the curve.