YouTube MarketingVideo Metrics Every Marketer Should be Watching in 2016

Recently, an interactive video advertisement by Kate Spade sparked my interest and engaged me more than any cat video on YouTube. The advertisement, The Waiting Game, was part of the MissAdventure series starring Anna Kendrick.

Video Metrics Every Marketer Should be Watching in 2016

What made the advertisement engaging:

  • It told the story of a girl, who just returned home after shopping at Kate Spade only to find that she locked herself out of her house. She then spends her time drinking wine and trying her new purchases.
  • The video is made interactive by making every item that she tries on or is wearing clickable for the viewer, which can later be checked out in detail once the video gets over. Hence, with the help of little coding the brand is able to understand which products are generating the maximum interest.

One out-of-the-box thing that this ad does is that it gives the viewers something to do while they are watching the ad. Why? Because of what we usually do whenever there is a commercial break between TV shows–we either mute it, dash for a loo break, flip other channels, head to get some snacks. Advertisers may count that as an impression, but does this help them move any other metric? No!

However, the Kate Spade advertisement gives viewers something way more interesting than all activities that they do during a commercial break. They are able to find out what their customers are interested in and ‘who’ exactly those customers are.

With the same number of impressions, they were able to move many other important business metrics, such as view duration, completion rates, micro-conversions, engagement, etc.

It wouldn’t be wrong to say that impressions and completion rates will join the “dying metrics” pack in 2016, as they do not tell the whole story. [Tweet this]

A survey revealed that there were no standardized metrics to measure the success of a video. The following graph represents the percentage of marketers who are in favor of a particular metric as a sign of a video’s success.

methods of measuring videos success

With new developments in video industry like 360-degree videos, and in algorithms, such as video auto-play, Facebook videos, vertical videos and consumer preferences like watching a video on mobile rather than on desktop, it needs to be clear that which metric should get marketers’ most attention.

Vidooly approached some of the top video marketing experts and asked them,

“What, according to them, should video marketers measure in 2016?”

#1: The Business Goal

“This is often the most overlooked metric by most businesses and marketers for the simple reason that they do not know what defines the success of a video marketing campaign. If it’s the goal to “go viral,” then how exactly is this defined? And how is it a success? What’s imperative is to set a goal that is quantifiable, because without it, it’s impossible to measure success.” says Miné Salkin, Digital Marketing Manager, Absolute Mobile Solutions. [Tweet this]

Usually, the goal of a campaign is financial success. For your YouTube marketing campaign to be successful, it needs to be targeted in a way that it increases awareness about the business and the brand. However, the form it takes needs to be very specific and unique.

Vidooly’s Take…

Before designing and running the campaign, marketers must establish what the goal(s) are, in addition to who the target audience is, and what their behaviors are like. And this should be done in quantifiable terms so that they can be measured.

For example, after how many shares and in what duration are we going to conclude that our campaign has gone viral? What should be the key performance indicators? Let’s say, you decide for click-throughs, then you need to establish the minimum number of click-throughs per 1000 impressions that will notify you about the success or failure of that campaign.

Ryan Williams, Video Marketer at RJMetrics, adds to this:

“It’s easy to look at view count as the be-all-end-all of video success. However, view count is the mother of all vanity metrics when it comes to YouTube. Having a holistic understanding of your video’s performance is much more important than any single metric.” [Tweet this]

However, Miné stresses more on the duration of view, rather than just the number of views.

#2: View Duration & Audience Retention

According to Miné, measuring the view duration of your video will automatically give you a really good indication whether or not your video is engaging or interesting enough to your target audience.

On YouTube, the “relative audience retention” graph measures how well your audience stays on your channel as opposed to others across the network. If your video is 30 seconds long and users are dropping off after the first five to ten seconds, chances are that you’ve not targeted the right audience, or need to shift your messaging to appeal to them in a different way.

In the same vein, audience retention is a great indicator of whether or not your brand messaging is having any effect whatsoever. If users are simply arriving at your video and leaving your channel, you may have measurable views, but it might not necessarily translate into a measurable goal achieved for the campaign. Views alone should never be considered a KPI.

According to Lasse Rouhiainen, Bestselling Author of 101 Video Marketing Tips and Strategies for Small Businesses, “By far the most important video metric is the retention rate. Consumers attention span is getting shorter and shorter, and it’s getting even harder to keep their attention on the video for a long period of time.”

“You should measure what percentage of viewers watch your video after 20-second mark? In addition, most video views currently happen on a mobile phone, which means companies need to create shorter videos in order to keep the video retention rate high.”

In a nutshell, whether you should give more emphasis on views or duration of the views depends upon the video, and what its purpose is.

Vidooly’s Take…

If you are measuring views, segregate them too. Don’t just go by “total views”. Keep track of “views from autoplay” and “views after an intentional click to play” separately. While autoplay views tell show capability of your videos’ content to hook the audience, intentional plays demonstrates the effectiveness of things other than your video content, such as the title, description, caption, etc.

#3 Video Reception & Engagement

“If you’re running pre-roll advertisements on YouTube for branding purposes then you’re likely to want to monitor your average view duration and the percentages of people that are either skipping the ad or clicking on it.

If you’re a brand that’s working with a creator, you’re more likely to want to measure engagement rates in the form of likes and comments – how was the video received by the creator’s audience?

360 degree videos add new types of metrics, and you might want to know, for example, how many of your viewers interacted with the video by changing the camera angle.” suggests Dane Cobain, Social Media Specialist, fst.

In such cases, it becomes essential to monitor how did your audience receive the video and how well they did it.

Pamela Wagner, Founder & Digital Marketing Specialist of Ajala Digital, adds in this context, “Measure how people are converting. What makes subscribers tick? How can you convert them into real fans? Where do they come from? How long do they watch? These are your best leads and the insights are a great basis for very targeted remarketing campaigns.”

Vidooly’s Take…

It is important to track how virtual actions are being translated into real actions that help your brand grow and expand its impact. For example, can you get those subscriber of your sports YouTube channel also to purchase your gym membership?

So keep a tab on what actions viewers are taking while watching your videos and after finishing. Ensure that the action they are taking are in line with the goals of that video.

Over to You

“Not exactly a metric, but I now strongly push for more than one video to be made for an online campaign, so you can A/B test the two videos to measure which helps to increase leads, social shares and video views.

This has worked previously for activity pages (bubble football) with one showing information and facts alongside a view of the activity, while the other was a go-pro head cam of taking part in bubble football.” continues Tom Bourlet, Digital Marketer, The Stag Company.

He suggests that A/B testing can help you to make decisions on future video production as well as enhancing sales figures by offering the customer exactly what they want. This can also prove ROI on video production, something many marketers struggle to demonstrate beforehand.

As a marketer, all of your videos should be made with a specific purpose or to solve a specific problem. As a result, the metrics you track should change video to video, depending on its purpose.

Let’s say your shiny new video has 1,000 views in the first three days. That’s great! People are seeing your stuff! But are these people the right people who will buy your product or share the video? Did these people watch the video all the way through or did they leave a few seconds in?

These are the types of questions you need to ask when taking a look at your YouTube video metrics. Don’t get caught up in that view count vanity metric! Put everything (watch time, audience retention, shares, etc.) in the right perspective relative to the video’s purpose, and you’ll get an accurate picture of your new video’s success.

Do you know who is unsubscribing from your channel-

Mansi Mendiratta

Storyteller on weekends, Content Catalyst on workdays. Books, Biopics, SEO, Yoga, & guffaws are my thing. Plus, my poetries rarely rhyme -.-

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