Unskippable vs. Skippable Ads

Let’s start with the basics.

What are skippable ads (via Google): A 30-second ad plays to completion, or until skipped by the viewer. The skip rate is an unbiased measure of engagement, and can be used as an optimization metric. You can create re-marketing campaigns based on whether or not viewers skip the ad. Cost-per-impression (CPM) is the same, whether or not the user skips it.

What are non-skippable ads (via Google): Non-skippable in-stream ads are video ads that may appear pre-, mid-, or post-roll while viewing partner content. … It’s up to you to determine the best balance between views/watch time…

For a long time, skippable was the way to go. It gave consumers the option, and didn’t make the experience to get the content they wanted as daunting. However, as time rolls on, the websites and networks have to think about not just the consumer, but also how they’re going to balance the priorities of the brands who are advertising with them. The brands need a real opportunity to be seen to grow their awareness of a campaign/product, and/or create engagement with the content they are putting out (ex. video completion rates – VCRs).

Many media vendors these days are going towards unskippable advertising for shorter ad units (ex.15 seconds), providing more value and investment for ROI by the brands who put their media budget towards pre-roll advertising with networks and websites.

It allows 3 great opportunities for brands:

(1) the opportunity to ensure the brand message is out in its entirety and not cut off;

(2) determine if the KPIs for the video are being met (outside of video completion rates, as that can’t be the a valid KPI for unskippable video ads);

(3) determine which networks are really working for driving further engagement with the consumer, and which ones only provided views (in the past).

In addition to this, YouTube, has said they are taking away the 30 second unskippable ad in 2018. Why? According to Google (via Verge) – “We’re committed to providing a better ads experience for users online. As part of that, we’ve decided to stop supporting 30-second unskippable ads as of 2018 and focus instead on formats that work well for both users and advertisers.” This is interesting, as it appears that longer form video pre-roll (30 seconds or more) actually do quite well in the skippable format anyway. Consumers actually do watch the whole ad and are likely not to skip even if it’s more than 15 seconds. What does that mean? Consumers are on YouTube to watch a certain type of content, and if your video content is related and relevant to them, they’re more likely to tune in and finish watching before they watch the video they intended.

Note: they will still allow non-skippable shorter forms of video.

As for other networks, they are providing more opportunities for advertisers to continue to do non-skippable (in the shorter format as mentioned). In the end, it’s not about which ad unit you have, but about where you’re placing your ads and within what context for the end consumer. Next time we can discuss more about this. Stay tuned.

This post originally ran in Socialnomics. 

image source – pixabay

Video Content – Not just an option anymore

video content fashion brand

The latest news in the battles of the social channels has been that Facebook is going over YouTube’s video domain. Facebook recently tried to “own” the Grammy’s conversation, and now is trying to “own” as many Superbowl related Ad opportunities as possible.

But what does this mean for startups and smaller brands? A lot actually.

As much as large marketing and ad budgets are nice to have, it’s not just about the money. It’s about the content. The key trend here is video. Over the past couple years we’ve noticed Vine, Instagram Video (including hyperlapse), Snapchat and more come into the social video space — joining the ranks of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Vimeo.

Smaller brands need and should figure out a way to invest in visual content, including video. Especially in the fashion industry where visuals are key to sell products and services.

Video can tell a story that a picture may not be able to portray fully.

  • Video can demonstrate how the founder came up with his/her idea for the startup
  • Video can show how the piece of clothing started from a piece of fabric
  • Video can allow an event to come to life in real-time
  • Video can allow consumers to see into your brand
  • Video can allow consumers to connect with one another
  • Video can allow for more user generated content (UGC)
  • Video can demonstrate that your brand is on top of its game

Although some video content can be expensive, there are ways to make video happen without breaking the bank. It’s not just about the ad budget, it’s about the story. Each brand has a story to tell.

The key is finding the story consumers want to hear. So before you go out and make a dozen videos for social, your blog, and your site. Listen first. Do some digital listening research to understand what consumers are talking about, asking for, and actually want from your brand…

  • Use free tools like Google trends to understand what people are searching for in regards to your brand and your competitors.
  • Topsy is a great tool to see if certain numbers are working and what people are saying in that conversation.
  • Look back at your Twitter stream to see what questions your audience was asking. Do they want to know more about your product and service? More about your founder?
  • Look to see where your audience engages, and what they engage with. For example on Pinterest – what do they love and repin most?
  • Do a poll or survey to see what your audience wants. Sometimes it’s as simple as asking directly.

Does your brand have questions on how to get started with the right video content? Reach out in the comments!

This post was originally written for Startup Fashion. 

Recent Snapchat Updates & What it Means for Marketers

Snapchat, the mobile visual application that allows for instant consumption of videos and photos has come out with some recent updates.

Although there are fun little things like filters there are two things that stood out to me: (1) applying temperature through Weather Channel data and (2) allowing users to view one snapchat per day more than once (rather than letting it self-destruct).

What this means for consumers:

  • Like Instagram, consumers can now create more visually appealing content
  • Consumers can add more context to their snapchats
  • Consumers can re-watch snapchats that were too quick or too memorable not to watch again

What this means for marketers:

  • Snapchats that are about contests, hidden previews, product launches, or special events can be viewed more than once by consumers – allowing more interactivity and potential word of mouth
  • Brands can view snapchats submitted by consumers more than once, which allows for easier screenshots to view and assess for winners of contests
  • Weather.com has already gotten inside Snapchat as a potential partner – which has potentially opened doors for others with context that is fitting for snapchat users
  • There are more “tools” at consumer and brand disposal for making snapchat content more fun and relevant (filters, speed, temperature, location, etc)

What’s next in the photo and video app field?

Let’s see what Vine or Instagram come out with next…

 This post was originally written for Social Media Club and my post can be found here

Five Easy to Use Tips to Optimize your Brand’s YouTube Channel

 

StartUp FASHION Business Optimizing YouTube Channel

Nowadays with so many video content options from Instagram and Vine — it’s easy to forget about YouTube. However, it is still one of the largest search engines on the web and can be perfect for enabling your video content to be discovered, consumed, and shared across channels.

We’ve spoken before about the value of video content for your fashion brand, but how about optimizing your video content so people can find it?

Before jumping in or even if you already have, make sure you are optimizing your brand’s YouTube channel…

  1. Channel Title and Description – Having an easy to remember channel name is best, especially when people are using the search bar to find it. The description is helpful for SEO purposes, and it is key to remember that the first few sentences are seen most often (as the rest gets cut off unless you click for a full description). So make sure that the beginning is helpful in understanding the objective of your YouTube channel.
  2. Video Title and Description – Similar to the channel title and description, not only is it important to utilize keywords for SEO purposes, but it’s helpful to make it easy for people to know what the video is. If it’s too obscure, less people may click on it when searching; and in turn less people may share.
  3. Video Transcript – This may seem like a silly tiresome thing you have to do, but remember YouTube is a search engine. Capitalize on those keywords and SEO value of being able to use them in the transcript as well.

To read the rest of my tips, check out original and full post on Startup Fashion.

 

Video Content – Is it part of your content strategy?

Note: this post was originally written in June for SMC so some items may have changed since then in regards to Vine and Instagram Video. 

The best video camera – the one you have with you. Whether it’s the video function on your phone, Vine, or the latest, Instagram video – video is a form of content that both consumers and brands alike are having not just fun with, but utilizing to express themselves.  Is video right for your brand, and if so – which one?

Once your brand has decided to add visual content to its toolbox, specifically video content, it’s time to figure out how it will amplify the content you already have and fit into your overall content strategy. First step is to determine if it will involve short form video content or long form?  Once you have that figured out, you can delve deeper into the benefits of the popular choices to choose from.

Short Form Video Content

The 6 second Vine

Benefits:

  • Shoot and Share in minutes
  • Embed capability for your website
  • New ability to have drafts rather than publish automatically
  • Save to camera roll to publish later (or store)
  • A for effort when it comes to telling a story in such bite size form

Disadvantages:

  • Need to be quick with the functionality and patient when shooting
  • Shaky hands make the video lesser quality

The 15 second Instagram Video

Benefits:

  • Filters for making the videos have that “instagram” feel
  • Ability to decrease the shake of the camera
  • Can do 15 seconds or less (more time to tell your story)
  • Easily integrates with multiple social networks including tumblr

Disadvantages:

Longer Form Video Content

YouTube

Benefits:

  • The length of content can be longer than 15 seconds
  • You can annotate the content to have CTAs
  • You can create SEO opportunities to lead to the content
  • You can create playlists for series of content
  • Largest location to search for video content

Disadvantages:

  • Not as simple as shoot and share

Questions on how to start your first video account for your brand? Reach out below and well do our best to answer.

Additional Reading: