Video News Reports Aim to Lure Health Industry Advertisers

With an eye toward the rising healthcare-related ad spend, TV and Internet video content producer NewsProNet has partnered with HealthDay to launch a series of health-related online video news reports.

The deal is expected to generate local and national advertising opportunities as it capitalizes on broad interest in online videos among U.S. Internet users.

“Healthcare is widely regarded as the new automotive industry,” said Kent Krizik, president of NewsProNet, of the new advertising opportunities.

There may be something to that. A 2008 Internet ad spending report from PricewaterhouseCoopers found automotive advertisers accounted for the third largest spending category at 12 percent of yearly revenue, or $2.8 billion.

“Certainly there’s much more pharma money that can come online, so the analogy may be fair,” said Greg Sterling, principal of Sterling Market Intelligence.

According to Krizik, while consumer interest in health has always been high, advertisers in that arena — from national pharmaceutical companies to local optometrists — are spending more on advertising, thus making this the perfect time to launch video news reports targeting that sector.

Peter Conti, SVP at research and consulting firm Borrell Associates, said, “Healthcare is truly one of the largest spending…categories at the local level.”

Conti said that if you were to add up hospitals, medical doctors/HMOs, and other medical professions, the total healthcare category would account for about $1.9 billion in total local interactive spend.

What’s more, Borrell Associates expects the local Internet ad spend for video to go from $1.1 billion last year to $5.5 billion by 2013.

The HealthDay reports will appear on the Web sites of news organizations, healthcare providers and government agencies. WorldNow and Broadcast Interactive Media are two such media players that have already signed on. NewsProNet estimates the monthly visitor count will be over 50 million and Krizik anticipates that by mid-August, the reports will be on 200 distribution platforms.

The videos are co-produced with HealthDay, which provides daily health news, and cover topics such as discoveries, breakthroughs, treatments and trends in medicine and healthcare. They are presented with Dr. Cindy Haines, chief medical officer at HealthDay. Krizik describes the reports as a combination of breaking news and evergreen content of particular appeal to women 18 to 54.

HealthDay identifies relevant stories from sources like the Journal of American Medicine and the New England Journal of Medicine and drafts a script. NewsProNet then refines that script specifically for an online video audience. “Our job is storytelling,” Krizik said.

Advertising and sponsorship options include pre-roll, video overlay and display advertising. Additional advertising and sponsorships will flow in through local media outlets that carry the content on their Web sites.

What’s more, Krizik says there are plenty of opportunities for cross-platform promotion as station clients can air the weekly package of six stories and then encourage their viewers to go to their Web sites to learn more. “That has proven very attractive to our broadcast clients,” Krizik says.

Dennis Kendall, director of broadcast news at Quincy Newspapers, said in a statement that healthcare channels have been very successful in attracting consumers and sponsors.

“[We] believe it will help us better engage with consumers and generate increased revenues as a premium sponsorship platform for local advertisers in our market,” he said.

This is the first of a series of NewsProNet initiatives to distribute online video news content. Krizik said the next partnership will be in consumer finance and will focus on topics such as practical things consumers can do with a household budget.

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