Measurement continues to be one of the most controversial topics in video advertising. While some might have hoped that improvements in digital measurement and attribution would have cracked the problem by now, instead marketers are confronted with an array of metrics, some of which can complicate matters further if too much weight is given to the wrong ones. Here Michael Hudes, Executive Vice President, International at YuMe, provides some guidance on making sense of modern measurement.
Every day, more than one billion global users watch 100 million hours of Facebook videos. There is no doubt that the media landscape is bigger, faster and more powerful than ever before – but with greater scale comes unprecedented complexity.
Marketers attempting to engage with content-hungry digital audiences have far more factors to consider than in the days when linear TV was king. Rapid evolution has brought infinite stores of data and metrics that stretch beyond reach and ratings to track ad quality, viewability, click-through rates and time spent.
Although this plethora of measurement options allows marketers to achieve a deeper understanding of campaign performance, information-overload can cause confusion about the best approach to take. While some marketers attempt to determine campaign success using a single metric, others take the opposite route and combine multiple — and often incompatible — metrics in a bid to cover all bases.
Neither method is likely to be effective. If campaign metrics are viewed in isolation, it is almost impossible for marketers to determine their role in achieving overall business goals. For example, a brand may set its strategic objective as increasing conversions yet choose to measure digital video completion rates — this will give a precise idea of how engaging consumers find its content but offer little insight into whether users were inspired to make a purchase or research its products.
To stay afloat amid the sea of metrics, marketers must take a more strategic and cohesive approach to quantifying campaign success. Metrics should be carefully selected to form integrated pieces of a measurement puzzle that aligns with overall business goals to produce a unified and complete view of performance.
Marketers also need to demand more of their tech partners than high-quality media delivery and disparate reporting — tech partners must provide real insights and validation of whether media is effective. From placement and viewability, to traffic quality and cross-channel interaction, marketers can specify the metrics that will enable them to understand and optimise their video campaigns.
This may not entirely circumvent the problem of multiplying metrics, but it will certainly help marketers to better manage the growing tide of information. As data continues to become an ever-more integral basis for digital campaigns, it will be vital for marketers to ensure they use it as a means to boost the impact of video content. Undoubtedly, the future evolution of the media landscape will produce a greater variety of methods to gauge the performance of video ads. Though they must still embrace innovation, marketers should also remember that adopting each and every new approach to measurement does not necessarily guarantee success.
Advances in analytical technology must be utilised in tandem with conventional measurement skills and tied to business goals to keep performance consistent and strong. Staying afloat in the complex and diverse video landscape will mean maintaining an even balance of metrics, insight and a human touch.