Carpet bombing – the term fascinated me right from the first time I heard it. Back in the days, advertising used to be like carpet bombing. Brands used to run their advertisements everywhere hoping to catch the eyes of its prospective customers. Launching a new soap? Run an advertisement on the most watched TV channel for a whole month. A new book launched? Order a print ad in all the major newspapers. That’s how things used to work. Of course there was an option to customize the target audience. For instance – you could run the ads only during a specific time period or print ads only in a few editions of the newspaper. But, the option to customize was painfully limited.
Thankfully – the advent of online marketing changed the game completely. Now, marketers have more data than ever to crunch, and to make sense of the behavior of the target audience. As a result, measuring the effectiveness of advertisements has also become far more scientific. However; there is so much data everywhere these days that it can sometimes give nightmares to the decision makers before they draw any conclusions from it.
Since we at Vidooly talk and deal in numbers day in and day out; a lot of people I meet ask this ever important question – how important is data in online video? So, in this blog, I’m going to jot down some pointers that highlight the importance of data and stats in the space of online video advertising.
Importance of customer segmentation
The first and the most important step before launching any advertising campaign is customer segmentation. Properly segmenting the target audience is an absolute must before a brand even decides the content of its video advertisement. That’s why; a thorough understanding of the target audience demography plays a vital role in the planning stages of a campaign.
A well-targeted ad campaign always allows your prospective customers feel that they’re understood and valued. Building such goodwill through well targeted campaigns is an essential tenet of building an identity for any brand. That’s why, whenever I meet the marketing folks from any brand, I tell them – forget everything and start with the audience segmentation. Without that, no matter how good your advertising content is, you’ll either end up spending more than you need to or you end up showcasing your brand in a bad light.
The biggest downside of bad market segmentation is that you run the risk of being completely alienated from your target customers. (You do not want to show the advertisements of Fastrack watches to people over the age of 40 now do you?) By understanding the behavior of the audience before advertising, brands can avoid sending messages that its target customers can’t relate to – leading to disengagement.
The rise of YouTube advertising
“At a time when TV is losing audiences, YouTube is growing in every region, on every screen” Susan Wojcicki, the top boss at YouTube proudly announced at the recently concluded YouTube Brandcast event in New York. She also added that the video giant has a bigger prime-time reach in the 18-49 age demography than the top 10 TV shows combined! Of course, this data doesn’t exactly show that YouTube is tearing people away from traditional TV. But you can’t really ignore the phenomenon that YouTube has become in the last few years can you? As more and more people cut the cord and start relying more on the internet (especially YouTube) for their information and entertainment needs, brands need to shift their focus to online advertising from traditional TV advertising.
Despite online video growing at such break neck pace, brands and advertising agencies are yet to come to terms with the incredible amount of audience data at their disposal. Most of them readily ignore the opportunities that they can milk using this vital piece of information. This was an area that we focused on while building our analytics and marketing suite for brands.
Trend analysis, genre-wise insights, audience viewing behavior, competitor tracking..all of these features are aimed at better understanding of data. A complete tool that can show all the vital stats to a brand’s marketing team in a single place was the end goal we started with. Right now, the tool is not completely platform agnostic and has most of the data from YouTube and Facebook, but in days to come we are going to add some more muscle to it; to make it a complete online video analytics suite.
Consider these two scenarios
Suppose L’Oréal is launching a limited edition lip gloss and wants to advertise it only for a specific time period of about a couple of weeks. It does not want to spend a huge sum on advertising since the limited edition lip gloss is just to test out a new color. Using the Trend Analysis feature of our tool, it can find out the videos that are about to trend and run the ads only one those videos! This will ensure that they not only spend less by narrowing the target audience, they’re also capturing the maximum eyeballs in a limited time period!
Suppose Oppo launches a new phone and on top of the advertisements on TV and the internet, it also wants to utilize the phenomenon of Mobile phone reviews (for those of you who don’t know, mobile phone reviews is a pretty big deal on YouTube) to reach out to its target audience. They can use the Genre insights feature of our tool, they can get detailed audience insights of all Indian YouTube channels. They can then zero in on the ones they want and reach out to; with an offer to get their mobile phone reviewed.
So what’s really important for brands – ad content or audience data?
This is like the age old question – art or science? While some people might argue that art should not be overtaken by science (since ad campaigns can be run even without prior audience insight), we at Vidooly believe that this is not a competition at all! Content and data should be like the rowers in a team that performs well only when both row in tandem. Data should not only help analyze the effectiveness of the content, it should also aide in its ideation and development.
That’s why our technology gives equal importance to both. The data that is churned out is not plain and one-dimensional. It is actionable. It can help brands not only analyze the performance of their ads, but also come up with newer content ideas for them!
If you or anyone you know is planning to launch an ad campaign or a video marketing campaign for a brand, do ask them to give our tool a try. Just shoot a message to me or an Email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll set up a call to understand their requirements and plan their campaigns scientifically and based on actual audience data. I’m pretty darn sure they’ll find out a whole lot more about their actual target customers than they already do.
Until next time!
Subrat is the CEO and co-founder at Vidooly. A passionate Entrepreneur by heart, he oversees the product and marketing strategy at Vidooly.