Twitter’s announcement of promoted video ads earlier this year served as an extension of its statement earlier in the year where the company set out to position its ad offering as a complement to TV ad spend.
More recently Facebook took 40 per cent of all views of the 2014 John Lewis ‘Monty the Penguin’ Christmas ad, indicating the popularity of video on social networks, and Twitter announced the launch of dockable videos that play while users continue to browse the site.
Major media owners aiming to monetise themselves in this way says a lot about the progression of online advertising, and Twitter’s statment in particular prompts us to think about how it relates to traditional media – especially broadcast.
TV is an incredibly impactful advertising channel, but so is online, so marketers need to be thinking about harnessing the power of these channels in combination, and embrace the opportunity that this offers.
If we think about the natural way in which consumers pick up different devices, and layer different content, their end goal is to achieve a much more immersive experience and this is the way we need to approach planning and buying media.
The reason that audiences go online while watching TV is because it makes it much less passive and much more social – as an industry we can take our cues from this when we look to answer questions about how to communicate effectively with the modern consumer.
By breaking down the historical division between online and offline spend the same way audiences have abandoned siloing time spent on devices, and instead thinking about how one channel’s performance affects success across others, marketers can start moving towards campaigns that mirror consumer behaviour more closely.
If we look more closely at broadcast, it still commands a huge chunk of UK ad spend. In Q3 of this year TV advertising revenues grew by 14.5 per cent, more than any other channel, according to the Advertising Association & WARC – with advertisers chasing the Saturday evening primetime slot and the vast audience it commands.
While it is true that there is no equivalent to this primetime slot across channels, we also need to recognise that for a lot of consumers TV moments simply don’t exist anymore.
We all know that consumers are now readily tweeting, sharing and watching content online while engaging with TV, and within the younger age brackets – those all important millennials – online video is making large gains on broadcast in terms of audience.
A recent study by comScore revealed that millennial consumers are spending 48 per cent more time watching online video than any other age group, with ComScore commenting that “Millennials are increasingly difficult to reach via traditional media.”
The opportunity is now there to market to this age group more holistically and capture their often fragmented attention. Brands that embrace this and capitalise on TV moments by linking it to online content will also benefit from moving TV audiences into an online environment like Twitter or Facebook, where they can go on to take action, such as make a purchase or download an app.
We all know that consumers’ viewing habits are changing, and it is encouraging to see industry heavyweights like Twitter respond by developing innovative cross-channel marketing solutions.
Advertising is at its best when it is clever and contextual, and technology is continuously propelling us down that path. It will be interesting to see how these technological developments help marketers plan less within specific media silos and instead enable them to be more reactive to consumers’ TV viewing habits.
Marketers who are quickest to embrace this integrated approach and adopt a screen-agnostic video strategy stand to reap the biggest rewards.
Nick Reid, UK MD at TubeMogul