More information is surfacing about the impact of video advertising on web campaigns. "Last week at the annual ARF Re:Think conference in New York, Hernan Lopez, President of .Fox Networks, and (Gian Fulgoni) presented an analysis of four ad campaigns run on the .Fox Network in the U.K that were evaluated using the comScore AdEffx™ platform." The data set included 80K U.K. Internet users and the campaigns delivered 300 Million impressions (# times anyone saw the ads). The goal of the research was to "understand how display ads and video ads increased visitation to the advertised brands' Web sites and how they increased search queries that used trademark terms or related generic terms." To "cut to the chase", the findings were that video ads and display ads both increased the reach (# people exposed to the ads) and search queries across sectors (finance, travel, public sector and utilities). HOWEVER, video ads increased site visitation higher than display ads with fewer exposures.
Within the public sector placements, video alone had a significant impact on site vistation than display ads alone.
While this is a limited data set, it reinforces that video is impactful to your campaign. Keep in mind however, that other research also shows that not all video is created equally. In my blog post "Online Video Growth & Advertising That Works", I highlighted research by Advertising.com showing that key variables with video include: relevance to the viewer, higher bar required to trigger spending time to watch a video, and production value and impact are directly proportional.
In a nutshell, do video ads, but do them well and targeted at the right audience.
I've spent quite some time in the innovation crucible. A few years ago, I attended the "Front End of Innovation" conference (PDMA, May 2007) in Boston and found my own thoughts on the topic reinforced by what I was hearing from others across various industries. My own thoughts on the topic are that true innovation requires
- Well-understood support from the very top leadership with commitment to the effort and its conclusions,
- Solid understanding of what business you are in and an honest view of your company SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats),
- "Vuja De" clarity ( http://bit.ly/thXDP ) to uncover new ways to serve your market profitably,
- "Visualized success" and clear documentation along with how to identify "success" if/when it happens,
- Ability to execute crisply to deliver item 4 as documented and
- Publicize even small successes internally to serve as "mental kindling" for future innovations.
What often happens is that "innovation" is a marketing program that becomes an expense that eventually gets trimmed until it either ends or is folded into the "normal" processes of a business and becomes unrecognizable internally or externally. Speakers who claimed repeated successes with innovation believed that innovation had become a native behavior of the business (Marissa Mayer - VP Search Products & User Experience at Google and Bill Malloy - International Brand Manager at Oakley). Innovators can be labeled as lunatic fringe and unsupported because they might challenge beliefs. Innovation is hard and staying power is critical from start to finish. Innovative successes may challenge some well-established management "brain trusts", so top level support is essential to keep from crushing new ideas/thinking. Innovation teams can begin to think that they are the smartest, freshest thinkers and that everything that they dream up is brilliant. This can stifle future innovation by others in the organization. Lastly, in my experience, one of the most often encountered issues was loss of fidelity to the idea because the team implementing it didn't stay true to the well-tested and documented idea and were "surprised" when it failed. Keep innovation thought leaders with the project to completion and make them a clear part of the successes (or failures) of the idea. This will help with accountability all around.