And the Oscar goes to...
The next major video event is here with the red carpet rollout this weekend. And we’ve been tracking the top films of the year beyond the box office to see what’s happening on YouTube. Thousands of videos to support each film are making their rounds through YouTube views and (of course) we’ve analyzed them all. And you can watch all Oscar-related videos on Touchstorm's YouTube channel.
When you think of checking out a film you look for the trailer on YouTube. It helps us weigh the $20 theatre trip vs. the patience of on demand. But film promoters are pushing a lot more than trailers, with short clips, reviews, behind the scenes cuts, celebrity interviews and even fan videos to support their films and stars. This is the right strategy, which we saw work well for Super Bowl advertisers.
Our analytics engine VOOT dug deep into thousands of videos related to the top six Academy Award categories this year. Based solely on view count, an indicator of popularity, YouTubers might announce that the Oscar goes to...
- “Gravity,” Best Picture
- Martin Scorsese, Best Director
- Christian Bale, Best Actor
- Sandra Bullock, Best Actress
- Bradley Cooper, Best Supporting Actor
- Jennifer Lawrence, Best Supporting Actress
The full report on our Touchstorm Video Index: Academy Awards Edition breaks down the winners in each category, and reveals insights worth noting, which apply equally to brands managing their own YouTube strategies:
- Supporting content matters. Just as we saw with the Super Bowl, a mosaic of great content to support the featured video helps build momentum and buzz.
- While trailers are the hot view for most YouTubers, interviews accounted for most of the views for Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, while film clips accounted for many of Amy Adams’ 63m views.
- Success begets success. As you’ll see in our full report, each of the individuals got a big boost in views because of their lift from previous work.
- The combination of “American Hustle” and “Silver Linings Playbook” catapulted Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence in audience views. While the “Dark Knight” trilogy helped Christian Bale land more than 140m views.
- Know what your competition is doing. By looking at the category—in this case the Oscars—these stars can see how they compare to their fellow nominees in views. The same benchmark applies to brands.
- With tight races in many categories, the exceptions (again) are Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper who are ahead of fellow nominees by three-times the view count.
Our latest report is a fun look at how the Academy might select if YouTube was the stage. But there are more factors than views to consider, and the goal should be building an audience, not just popularity.
Keep an eye on our Video Index as we continue to analyze major video events and what they mean for marketers and brand strategy on YouTube.
Since the Coca-Cola America Is Beautiful ad ran during the Super Bowl, it ignited a media and consumer firestorm. And it’s been fascinating to watch the ad unfold behind the scenes on YouTube, which is what our Video Scoreboard reveals.
The Coke ad now tops the chart in Effectiveness for the brand, displacing the Budweiser Puppy, RadioShack, Microsoft Empowering and others. But it still lags in views. How’s that?
Unlike most other Super Bowl ads that kicked off their mega campaigns prior to the big game, building views and momentum along the way, Coke held the ad back, revealing it first during the game. These are two different campaign approaches and our Video Scorecard is revealing which is the most effective strategy.
Given its late start, Coke is still middle of the pack in Views, a measure most people have been using to anoint the Super Bowl ad champion. But what’s most telling, is the Coke ad is now #3 in Likeability (compared to all others in the Super Bowl category), and #1 in Velocity. The true measure is Effectiveness, however, and it shot into the #1 slot today.
The Effectiveness metric is the coveted one, as it blends all key metrics—Views, Likes, Subscriber Conversion and Velocity—with a formula that presents a numerical ranking of the most effective ads at building audience for the brand.
Views and shares are fine, but those can be bought. Genuine audiences are built based on true ad success, and Coke has the right stuff.
Keep checking back to see how it climbs. The data is changing every day!
New Touchstorm Video Scoreboard reveals the real winners in the Super Bowl ad game—and it’s not who you think
As the world’s greatest advertising event peaked Sundat night—hats off to the Seattle Seahawks—we’ve reached a tipping point, where YouTube is the true scorecard for measuring Super Bowl ad success.
While Doritos and Budweiser topped the charts in views and shares, the real measure of success is the brand’s ability to amortize the cost of the ad—particularly one worth more than $4 million—over weeks of hype. Is the ad really working for the brand and helping it move from mere awareness to trust?
We have the formula to show which ads are actually succeeding in building audience, not just awareness. Our new Touchstorm Video Scoreboard is the first (free!) live dashboard showing which brands are on the leaderboard everyday after the Super Bowl.
While certain brands are winning the popularity game, are those ads really working for the brand? And can the ad help build audience for the brand over time? We break it all down.
See who’s on top of the Touchstorm Video Scoreboard.
Our dashboard is built on a four-part formula of views, likability, velocity and subscriber conversion, and gives Super Bowl advertisers a level of analysis they’ve never seen. The result is their only ability to look precisely at their own video performance and how it compares to their peers.
Here’s how it works:
- Views: Not only how many views the main ad receives, but adjunct creative is combined to arrive at accurate, total view counts.
- Velocity: How long a brand is able to sustain interest in the ad, including when that interest peaks and starts to decline.
- Likability: A comparison view of relative passion generated from each ad, showing which ads were genuinely more popular with viewers.
- Subscriber Conversion: Which brands’ ads are better at generating YouTube subscribers, the critical measurement required for a brand to succeed on YouTube.
On the live Video Scoreboard, those four metrics are combined and weighted to reveal the Top 10 ads in overall brand effectiveness. Check daily because results will likely change over time.
Have fun with it. Think about what the dashboard means to your own video marketing, and keep an eye out for a dashboard that you can apply to your own channel. (More on that later…)
Check it out!
We're excited to announce our latest venture, veeseo North America, which will change the face of publishing—really! veeseo is the first video relevance engine, matching publisher videos to editorial stories based on the relevance of the content—without any effort.
Here's how it works: Imagine you're reading an article and the video is perfectly aligned to the story—it's timely, topical, relevant, not just a "top video of the day." As an editor, you didn't have to do a thing to add highly relevant video to your story, so you place it mid article. As a publisher, you've unleashed your video archive to give your content more visibility, and greater clicks ($) that stay on your site, not out to others. As a reader, you're happy to see video that interests you now, not about something you were researching online last week. There are so many wins we stopped counting.
Watch our latest video that tells the story of veeseo, and see what MediaPost and Adotas have to say. If you're a publisher or editor and you'd like to try veeseo on your site, please contact us and we'll get it going.
There's a new YouTube analytics engine in the world and it's about to change the way you look at your online video strategy.
For the first time, brands can see where they stand against nearly every competitor on YouTube -- large and small, which is important because some of the smaller YouTube channels are eating many of the big brands' lunch. That's right, we're not talking about Coke vs. Pepsi, we're talking Blendtec, which is beating both of them.
Competition on YouTube is not about traditional competitors, it's about conversations. It's not about the size of the company, it's about the share of the voice. Our new Touchstorm Video Index: Top Brands Edition outlines exactly who owns that share of voice on the largest online video stage, and guess what? It's mostly not brands.
For the first time, any YouTube channel owner can see who else is sharing content, having conversations and building audiences around similar topics. Finally, a recipe vlogger can see where she stands against other recipe vloggers in views and subscribers. A big brand can discover a host of new competitors it never new existed, find out what they're doing well and why their share of voice is rising.
Here are some of the questions the Touchstorm Video Index: Top Brands Edition will answer:
What are the Top 500 videos in my category, and what do they have in common that I can mimic?
What's the average number of subscribers converted per every million views in my category, and why is my channel below the average?
Are my competitors spending money winning views, and if so, how much?
What are the top channels in Japan for my category, and how do I compete there?
What is the overall growth rate of YouTube itself, so we can determine if we are keeping up or falling behind?
What is the average “like-ability” for content in my category, and does our content perform better or worse than that?
Alison Provost, our analytics-maven CEO, breaks down the Index and what it means for brands specifically. Watch and learn, and then check back for more because we're about to release another cog in the wheel here that will just keep strengthening the index and the value it provides.
See Adweek's article on the Video Index here.
See MediaPost's article on the Video Index here.
Some music stands the test of time and finds an audience of new listeners in every generation. Online video carries the same power.
Recently, Shutterstock and Sony teamed up to re-imagine a video for the Sly and the Family Stone classic, "Everyday People." Exclusively using stock footage from the Shutterstock collection and some animated vintage photos to shape the narrative of the video, producers rediscovered not only how relevant the song remains today, but also how meaningful its message remains. (Read more about the making of the video, and watch the final product below.)
The combination of an iconic tune and compelling imagery makes it so sensational. "Using clips of everyday people doing what they do, being who they are, and living life across cultures really drives home the essence of Sly's lyrics," said Adam Farber, Project Director for Legacy Recordings.
For companies searching for new ways to incorporate video into their overall marketing strategy, yet might not be in line to partner with a music company to attain rights to reproduce a song, there are other more far-reaching lessons to take away. Once you come up with the right approach to put your brand on the map, here are some suggestions of how to proceed:
1. Hire the right producers. Find people who have both the experience and passion to make your vision come alive. That passion will be reflected in both the first cut and the final cut.
2. Storyboard everything. It can be time-consuming and expensive to make a video. You can eliminate unnecessary hurdles by outlining the approach and process ahead of time. This will make for swifter turnaround times, too.
3. Get experimental. Just because you have a process in place doesn't mean you should entirely dismiss improvisation. Some of the best ideas come to you while making edits or putting the finishing touches on. Check out some of the more exotic clips in the "Everyday People" video, below.
Guest post by Danny Groner. Danny Groner is the manager of blogger partnerships and outreach for Shutterstock.
You may be wondering what kind of video you should make; what type of video is right for your brand. Types of videos? Yes, types. All the talk about online video needs to become more nuanced to reflect the various ways that you can communicate with video online. Saying "we have online videos" is akin to saying "there is weather going on outside". It is accurate, but neither descriptive nor helpful.
Types of online videos are not overly complex. It's as easy as your freshman communications class, really. Remember the three types of communication? You can persuade, entertain or inform. Remember developing those speeches? Well, online videos fall into one of these three categories as well: Persuasive, Entertaining and Informative.
First things first; here's what you need to do to gauge your type.
Take an Inventory of Your Videos
You'll need this to help you develop your strategy, but for now, just put them all in one of these three buckets. As you do this, a couple of things will emerge: first, you'll start to see that you are preferring one kind of video over the others, and second, you'll also see that your video content doesn't fall neatly into these categories. That's the point of this exercise, to highlight where you are off-strategy with your content. If you don't know what bucket it goes in, then just put it where you wished it fit well. If your information has too much competitive language, then don't worry, just put it in there anyway.
Take an Inventory of Your Competitors' Videos
Again, don't over think it. Just find as many as you can and start to list them in their respective categories. Don't worry about too much analysis either. The goal is to get you thinking about and seeing Online Video in these three categories of content.
Look at Your Other Marketing Communication Activities
What bucket does most of your other content fit into? It is typical for it to be primarily Persuasion since this is the primary mode of marketing. But the landscape is changing and brand content is changing with it. We want to make sure that you are prepared to meet and engage your audience the way they want to be engaged, and that your competition doesn't beat you to the punch.
1. They Have Experience in the Type of Content You Need
(We'll assume everyone knows to look for an ad agency to make online video ads for them.) If you need Editorial Videos then find a company that understands what works in this kind of video. Not just any old production company will do. Same for Entertainment--whether one-off or series)--you need someone with a track record of success here.
2. They Understand Online Video Content Production
Those that have worked in television for years and years tend to think about digital in a certain way. The same holds true for companies that have worked in film or large commercial projects. You want a partner who understands the uniqueness of the online medium--and how it is evolving from the desktop/laptop world to the tablet/smartphone one.
3. They Are Sound in Strategy and Execution
What you are looking for is a thought-partner in addition to an execution partner. Can they help you think through your strategy for your online video mix, and then can they help you get those videos produced? Or if you feel like your strategy is all shored up, then you'll need someone who gets and can work within the parameters of that strategy.
4. They Pre-Wire Your Content to Perform in Search
We've said that Google is the homepage of the web, so getting your content high in rankings is key. You want a partner who knows the right topics and can develop scripts that will perform well for you. Not all topics are searched equally. So, ask about their topic and script development process.
5. They Get Talent in Front of and Behind the Camera
Creating content is talent plus craft. Make sure your partner is putting talented people in front of the camera for you--real experts who know their material or talented performers. But you also want talent behind the camera writing great scripts, directing, shooting, producing, etc. It is not easy making good video and having a great camera doesn't make a great video.
It is easier than ever to produce and distribute online video. The challenge today is what to produce and where to distribute it. We see companies struggle with this all the time. They have a YouTube channel with a dozen videos and somewhere between 200-2,000 views per video; or they created a series of videos that are too branded to get earned media. It’s not just little guys struggling with this, big brands are faced with both the opportunity and the challenge of being a publisher.
There is one simple problem with most brands’ approach to online video. It’s very simple to remedy, and once a brand does this, they see their results improve. Once you understand how the system works it seems very obvious, but if you are on the front end of developing content for your brand, it can be very frustrating.
The problem? Not matching your video content with your distribution method.
Granted, it doesn’t sound very revolutionary, but let’s unpack this idea a little bit. The acronym POEM has been around for a few years now, and it has caused much of this problem. It stands for Paid, Owned and Earned Media. This represents the Distribution method for your content online. The thing that’s not discussed in this acronym is that certain types of content fit better for certain types of distribution.
For example, ads are great for paid media, but they have to be amazing to get any earned media. Think about the last ad you shared on Facebook. What was it? What was the last ad you saw as content on your favorite website or blog? Ads have certain places that they run on a site: pre-roll or over in the margins, and you pay for these placements. So, if you are creating advertising and hoping to get earned media or to rack up lots of views on your owned media properties, it probably is not going to happen.
But I didn’t create an ad, I made a—viral video/online video/how to video/other kind of video—to run everywhere online. Yeah, we hear this one a lot, but when we watch the video, the brand has sneaked in features and benefits and competitive language – basically, doing what a good ad does, which is sell. And the first rule of editorial is, No Selling! If you are hoping for earned media, then you need to create a different kind of video.
There are 3 kinds of videos that work online: Advertising, Entertainment, and Information. The problem is that most brands create some kind of hybrid of these, and then they are stuck because publishers don’t know what to do with it, and audiences don’t really get what they are watching. Remember, people have been watching video their entire lives on TV and in movie theatres. They are very sharp about it, and understand the genres. You violate this rule at your own expense.
So, first decide the right mix of online video for you (more on this in our next post): advertising, entertainment and information – you need all three for a robust online video strategy.
Then match your content to your distribution. We mentioned that paid is best for ads even though there are a lot of social video companies in the news [link to the adweek article] running entertainment or informational video in paid space – some of these placements are a bit dubious despite their well-branded names. For entertainment videos, you are best running it on your owned media or in partnership with a publisher who has existing traffic. Finally, your information video—evergreen, non-selling, editorial videos—are perfect for earned media distribution.
There are exceptions to this approach, but they are the rare, 1 in 500 cases, and who wants to base their entire strategy on capturing lightning in a bottle?
We recently ran across this Forbes/Google report which highlights ways that online video has invaded the C-Suite. The key findings in the report included:
- Video is becoming a critical information source for senior executives. More than 80% said they are watching more online video today than they were a year ago.
- Senior executives are also turning to video more frequently. Three-quarters (75%) of executives surveyed said they watch work-related videos on business-related websites at least weekly; more than half (52%) watch work-related videos on YouTube at least weekly.
- Work-related video can drive senior executives to take action. Overall, 65% have visited a vendor’s website after watching a video. Younger executives, however, may be more fully engaged with this type of media, and appear more likely to make a purchase, call a vendor, or respond to an ad.
- Executives can be receptive to video advertising. Overall, executives notice ads that run alongside videos, and many are comfortable watching in-stream ads. Video-friendly younger executives are more comfortable with these ad formats.
- The social element of online video is strong in the executive suite. More than half of senior executives share videos with colleagues at least weekly, and receive work-related videos as often. Younger executives appear very willing to share and view videos using social media.
While much of the focus of the online video conversation centers around the consumer-facing end, this trend is one that should be encouraging for the B2B community. Additionally, it means that more and more executives in companies with significant TV budgets are using and understanding the value of online video. Perhaps this will accelerate the growth in budgets that are desperately needed to see the needed growth (and growing up) in the industry. The scale and sophistication differential is still heavily weighted for TV-based video, but trends like these bode well for the futures of all those working to grow the space.