Video Marketing Must Be Tailored to Devices [Ad Week]

Audiences are consuming more video than ever, leaving advertisers tasked with the important challenge of creating digital video content that invites engagement across platforms and devices, according to an Advertising Week panel discussion titled “Sight, Sound, and Mobile: Video Marketing in a Digital Era.”

In the panel discussion, Facebook vice president of Global Marketing Solutions Carolyn Everson said that Facebook videos receive, on average, 1 billion views a day, with 65 percent of those views happening on mobile. Furthermore, mobile and tablet viewing increased 532 percent from 2012 to 2014.

People are carving out moments during their everyday activities to consume media via mobile, rather than, for example, running home after work to catch a favorite show. Everson believes that the shift in the way audiences view video “has fundamentally changed the way consumers are discovering brands.” In response, brands must focus campaigns to target customers across devices, she said.

One example of effective video marketing across devices is Coca-Cola’s “America Is Beautiful” Super Bowl campaign. In the panel, Ivan Pollard, vice president of global connection, explained that Coca-Cola released the controversial advertisement during Super Bowl XLVIII, while simultaneously using Facebook’s targeted advertising tools to deliver tailored versions of the ad to specific customers on Facebook, including members of the LGBT and Hispanic-American community.

The “America Is Beautiful” campaign allowed television and social media content to work hand-in-hand while creating engagement around the product. The campaign ultimately boosted sales because, according to Pollard, the company used video “to reach the right people at the right time and invite people to a relevant conversation.”

NBC has also had success in multi-platform video marketing. The network was the first to use targeted advertising to run short, audience-specific video clips of its summer shows to Facebook users. Kjerstin Beatty, senior vice president of media at NBC, called the videos “the centerpiece of our off-air planning,” and says the risk paid off in terms of summer viewership.

However, video content is not one-size-fits all across social media platforms. Pollard says that the first step to creating engaging video is first figuring out what type of content people like to consume on a given channel, citing Coca-Cola’s Vine-based comedy shorts as an example.

Digital content also can’t feel forced. According to panelist Lisa Weinstein, president of Global Digital Data and Analytics at Starcom Mediavest Group, all content can’t be planned. To excel across social platforms, “the ability to react is critical” for creating “quality everyday content.”

Although recent studies have shown that digital channels effectively move consumers through every stage of the purchase funnel, brands have been slow to make room in budgets for digital advertising. The most common reason brands choose to scrimp on digital advertising budgets is lack of data to help determine outcomes.

“Status quo is powerful,” Weinstien said, “Brands understand how legacy media has worked.”

The panel agreed that the sooner Facebook and other social media implement standard metrics for measuring outcomes, the sooner brand budgets will expand to focus on digital.

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