November 27, 2019

The Importance Of Great Content

There's been a noticeable rise in chatter around the push by 'Big Tech' to keep users inside their own platforms and ecosystems as more and more internet searches end without a click. So what is the role of great content and strategy within these environments?

It's interesting to see that now more than 50% of Google searches end without a click. Google search provides on-page content such as Wikipedia synopsis, shopping options, movie times, maps and directions etc. And they are all displayed within the first page of search without the need to click. The change has been gradual and subtle. Of course, when it comes to video, Google will promote YouTube as the one place they are happy for you to click-out to.

It's incredible to look at the most recent 'Internet Minute' chart for 2019, there are actually more YouTube videos watched in a minute than Google search queries made.

Internet-Minute-2019-Great Content

Likewise, Facebook is also on a mission to keep people inside their platform for longer. Recent statistics show that time spent using Facebook has remained stable over the last few years, even as more social platforms and niches have emerged. Examples include Facebook Watch, Facebook Marketplace, the raft of publisher and media deals and incredibly 43% of users now get their news from Facebook.

How will great content provide meaning, sales and loyalty?

All this is making the challenge for companies and their brands even greater. How can they still provide meaning, sales and loyalty in a constantly shifting online environment? Will clicks to websites and 'owned channels' become a thing of the past as online behaviour begins to change?

For sure! So ensuring a well planned and executed creative content strategy which performs specific marketing functions and ultimately delivers on business objectives becomes ever more important.

Written by Keir Maher, CEO at Now We Collide, an independent creative agency based in Sydney, Australia. We use insights, strategy and clever, creative thinking to produce contagious advertising campaigns and content for today's connected brands and consumers.

December 11, 2018

YouTube growth & John Lewis’ Christmas TV commercial

YouTube has made another big move into 'social video' launching a new Stories feature for creators with over 10k subscribers. Following the huge success of Instagram Stories (er…sorry, Snap) it was only a matter of time before the YouTube team launched their version.

Using FashionByAlly, who has nearly 1 million YouTube subscribers, as an example of how stories can be created and shared. It will be interesting to see the options this will present to brands and businesses both natively and through advertising.

Facebook Watch is now offering in-stream commercials and with the growth of Instagram Stories and IGTV, YouTube clearly sees the threat to their revenue. It will be fascinating to see how this one plays out.

The power of YouTube to attract new eyeballs

An eye-opening article from the team at Venture Beat highlights the power of YouTube for attracting new eyeballs in emerging markets. In India, this means YouTube reaches 245 million unique active viewers each month and a further 74 million in Indonesia. That's phenomenal numbers. It shows how digital video is becoming a regular part of the lives of audiences in emerging markets. It presents challenges for both incumbents and new entrants like Netflix alike, who see these markets as the future of their growth - read the full story here.

A TV commercial worth watching

Not only the traditional ad-world but the wider public alike was a-buzz recently with the anticipated launch of John Lewis 2018 Christmas TV commercial. It proves that when 'advertising' is done well it can entertain instead of annoy. The TV commercial already has 10 million+ views on YouTube. Hats off to John Lewis and the team for investing over the long term. For all the nerds out there, check out the 'Making of The Boy and The Piano' TV commercial.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cA7RjKcbk8

August 24, 2018

Vertical Video Is A Must For Mobile Marketers

Vertical video campaigns have been growing in popularity for a number of years along with the rise of in-app video viewing and mobile sharing. Snapchat was no doubt one of the pioneers of the format and they have continued to stick with it, while Facebook and Instagram have joined in with 'Stories' and Instagram's latest product IGTV. This is primarily being driven by the growing number of consumers now using their phones for their daily video consumption. The VideoInk provides an interesting look into Vertical Networks, launched by Elisabeth Murdoch with a focus on producing short-form video for mobile devices, and their "data-driven content strategy".

Talking of mobile video reports that Tesla is adding Atari games to the in-car display have been followed up with confirmation they are poised to bring in-car video to their next software update via an Elon Musk Tweet claiming that video playback will be available with "version 10" of Tesla's car software.

An interesting article from Variety on the journey Netflix has undertaken from DVD postal distribution company to the world's leading OTT entertainment company - "Netflix’s original-content push took off in earnest on Feb. 1, 2013, with the debut of “House of Cards.” Five years later, the streaming service has grown to the point where it is projected this year to deliver more than 80 new feature films (original and acquired) and an astounding 700 new TV series."

The campaign which caught our eye this week if the Smirnoff US campaign developed by 72andSunny with clever use of the media as the message using Ted Danson and a dash of humour to call attention to YouTube's 6 second bumper formats. It feels like Smirnoff missed a trick by not integrating the campaign across any other channels with no thought for extension across their website or other social channels.

Written by Keir Maher, CEO at Now We Collide, an independent creative agency based in Sydney, Australia. We use insights, strategy and clever, creative thinking to produce contagious advertising campaigns and content for today's connected brands and consumers.

March 15, 2018

Reach consumers who searched on Google…on YouTube

It sounds like a no brainer but now Google has provided a direct relationship between search on Google and video delivery on YouTube for advertisers. At the recent Search Marketing Expo - SMX, Google announced a number of updates to YouTube which provide greater evidence of their focus on video. It's now at the heart of internet search and way to connect brands, products and services to audiences (and that means customers).

Allowing advertisers to reach (and if done correctly, engage) people on YouTube who have recently searched on Google, the new innovation called "custom intent audiences" harnesses Google's vast amount of search information and is currently only available within the AdWords experience. By fusing the data collected in search with audience information and search terms on YouTube, custom intent audiences can be "an effective way to move undecided customers to action using the persuasive power of video." according to the Google announcement. 

This presents a really interesting opportunity for brands to develop an integrated digital strategy using the power of video to build brand and/or product awareness, brand affinity and product features and benefits in an engaging way. Used in the right way it is clear that this can complement and increase the performance of SEM and digital marketing campaigns. Particularly in hyper-competitive categories such as travel, finance, auto, e-commerce and beyond, a well-thought-out strategy to connect with audiences based on historical search behaviour across Google to deliver relevant and timely video content could significantly drive enhanced outcomes for not only awareness and brand building but also customer acquisition.

Google highlights a case study of online investment company Betterment who used custom intent audiences to reach YouTube viewers who recently searched for financial keywords on Google. The brand increased its return on ad spend 6X compared to previous YouTube campaigns and saw a 245% increase in searches on Google.com, including their brand term: "Betterment". 

Social media content has the power to assist with SEO

Of course, Google would like everything to stay within their ecosystem but in reality, the power of social media content to also assist with SEO, customer engagement and acquisition means that a multi-channel social video content strategy would also contribute significantly to overall results and maximise the ROI of video content. This also provides a way for savvy marketers to prove direct results of an integrated digital marketing strategy with video at the heart. 

One issue this also highlights is the need for specialist video content experts with a deeper knowledge and understanding of not only the different platforms available but also how video and content creative needs to be optimised for these platforms and the different opportunities to maximise ROI within them. It also highlights the need for multi-disciplinary teams to work collaboratively, in this case, the SEM specialists working alongside video & content strategy and creative as part of a wider digital content strategy. It will be interesting to see which brands take full advantage of this new feature as Google starts to roll it out globally.

September 4, 2017

Video Content Marketing for Generation V

Video has rapidly become the most powerful way to connect with audiences around the world. And video content marketing represents the biggest growth opportunity for brands to do just that.

It demands and attracts more consumer attention than any other medium. Because of its unrivalled ability to evoke emotion, communicate information and tell stories.

And whilst the "golden age of video" is in full swing - it still represents the biggest growth opportunity for brands to build audiences and harness them to build brands and sell products. 

Scientifically, we know that 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual. And that visuals are processed by the brain 60,000 times faster than text. Given people spend one-third of their time online watching videos there is huge potential here.

Of all the video platforms available, YouTube is the most regularly used platform for Gen Z cited by 84% of respondents in a recent Accenture study.

The video content marketing stats are compelling:

Video is projected to claim more than 80% of all web traffic by 2019.

Mobile video traffic expected to increase at a 50% compound annual growth rate through to 2021.

Between Snapchat (10 billion), Facebook (8 billion), and YouTube alone (4 billion), there are 22 billion daily video views.

One-third of all the time people spend online is dedicated to watching videos. 

64% of customers are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video about it.

87% of online marketers are currently using video content in their digital marketing strategies and 65% of marketers plan to increase their mobile ad budgets to account for video.

7 out of 10 Millennials are likely to watch a company video when shopping online.

With access to the tools of production and distribution now almost ubiquitous, many brands, both big and small, are taking advantage of the content marketing revolution, with great results. However, it is the rigour around content strategy, creative strategy, and selecting the right tools of production and distribution which separates the ok from the great.

To get more information on how the best brands are using video content marketing campaigns to achieve results-based business outcomes, why not drop us a line.

November 4, 2016

YouTube’s New End Screen Feature For Brands & Publishers

YouTube recently announced it is looking to faze out annotated end frames on videos and has introduced YouTube End Cards as a feature. Previously reserved for a select number of publishers and creators, the key benefit of End Screens is that they work across both mobile and desktop, whereas predecessor annotations work only on desktop. This is a step YouTube had to take given half of all YouTube users now access YouTube video on mobile.

So what are they? End Screens are overlays appearing at the end of videos which encourage viewers to take an action before the video completes, such as get more information, click to view another video, visit a website, subscribe to the channel and more. End Screens can appear in the last 5-20 seconds of a video, and desktop viewers can hover over them for more information while mobile audiences just need to tap on the thumbnails. YouTube has restricted use to up to four End Screens, as long as the video has a 16:9 aspect ratio. 

This makes End Screens a valuable feature for brands and publishers who take advantage of this important new feature.

If brands and publishers create quality videos that convince viewers to watch more content via the use of compelling End Screens, they can expect to see increased retention and watch time across their channels, thanks to the YouTube algorithm. Over time, this tactic can also increase overall video completion and watch time metrics notwithstanding the fact that the video creative still needs to do the main job of attracting and keeping viewers. 

With viewing across mobile being so high, the ability to encourage channel subscription and additional calls-to-action such as product purchase or visiting a specific (verified) website across both mobile and desktop traffic is significant.

The switch to End Cards does create a potential headache for existing publishers who have annotated end frames and want to switch to End Screens as the formatting is different and the placement restrictions of the thumbnails means previous end frames and calls-to-action are unlikely to match up and will need re-formatting.

Ongoing though, it is clear that any brand or publisher uploading video to their YouTube channel will now need to consider: 

  1.  How videos created can best utilise the updated End Screens format.
  2.  How to time video end frames to make the most use of the 5-20 seconds available on End Screens.
  3.  Check performance and metrics of end screens to see those performing best, be prepared to modify based on audience behaviour.

As the world's second biggest search engine and with the seemingly unstoppable rise of video consumption on mobile, a YouTube strategy is now near essential for most brands and publishers. With End Screens, brands and publishers can improve the experience on YouTube for mobile audiences, increase watch times, and drive specific actions from viewers. As such, brands and publishers should start using End Screens as soon as possible so they can reap the benefits of the feature sooner rather than later.