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Marketers Seek Metrics to Evaluate Digital Video Ad Success

A majority of online video viewers are between 25 and 54

November 30, 2012

The valuable digital video audience is growing in both number and time spent viewing, and that is compelling more marketers to invest more ad dollars, according to a new eMarkteter report, “Video Advertising Benchmarks: Key Data, Trends and Metrics.”

The latest eMarketer projection shows that by 2014, nearly three-quarters of all US internet users will watch video online at least once per month. Alongside rising viewership, spending for video advertising, both desktop and mobile, will rise from $2.93 billion in 2012 to $8.04 billion in 2016.

US Digital Video Viewers, 2010-2016 (millions and % of internet users)

As more ad-supported video content is created, the focus shifts to the four basic benchmarks of video advertising: ad metrics, types of ads, spending trends and audience size.

Traditional digital ad metrics include completion rates and brand lift. When a user views a video ad in full, marketers can be more confident that their message got across. One would assume that shorter ads would have higher completion rates, and data from video ad network YuMe supports that assumption. In the first quarter of 2011 and the first and second quarter of 2012, YuMe found that shorter ads saw higher completion rates.

Brand lift, or the overall increase among the various brand health markers, is another important evaluation metric, cited as the video metric that delivered the highest level of success by the most respondents (54%) in a 2012 survey from Digiday and

Video Metrics that Deliver the Highest Success According to Brand Advertisers and Agencies in North America, 2011 & 2012 (% of respondents)

But the data gathered from a variety of advertising campaigns during different time periods by several video-ad firms should best be viewed as basic indicators of larger trends. That’s because a plethora of factors will color the results of any single metric, such as completion rate, for a specific campaign. Those factors include everything from the time of day an ad runs to the nature of the creative.

In addition, marketers must also keep in mind who is watching videos and accompanying ads, and when.

At 18.9%, the largest share of the 178.7 million digital video viewers in 2013 will be ages 25 to 34, according to eMarketer estimates. However, while some might get the impression that the digital video audience tilts extremely young, about 50% of viewers in each year of eMarketer’s forecast period will be between ages 25 and 54.

The full report, “Video Advertising Benchmarks: Key Data, Trends and Metrics,” also answers these key questions:

  • Which metrics best indicate video advertising effectiveness?
  • How will digital video ad spending proceed over the next few years?
  • What are the most salient characteristics of the video audience?

This report is available to eMarketer corporate subscription clients only. Total Access clients, log in and view the report now.

Check out today’s other articles, “Trends for 2013: Content, Context Vie for Supremacy” and “BBC's Olympics Win Moves Transmedia Coverage Forward.”


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