This is a guest blog post by Benjamin Wayne. He is the founder, president, and CEO of Fliqz, a B2B provider of plug-and-play video solutions.
Can you share your thoughts on online videos going viral?
Online video is a powerful viral tool for marketers. In the video context, “viral” distribution typically means that sites will allow end users to repost videos via an embed code, or link to them via some form of permalink. More sophisticated marketers may use “sticky” permalinking to direct specific traffic and buy-flow.
Within the Fliqz customer base, which comprises over 30,000 publishers of varying sizes, we consistently observe that sites that allow viral reposting will see up to 40% of their video viewership occurring via players that have been reposted outside of the publisher’s domain. Not only does this offer considerable opportunity for viewership lift, it enables marketers to get their branding and messaging into venues which have been typically impossible to penetrate, such as Facebook pages, personal web sites, and blogs.
When viral videos are properly delivered with specific calls to action and links in the video stage, watermark, start- and end-screen, marketers can drive significant and specific traffic, increasing site visitation, new audience creation, and overall engagement.
How do you determine the return on investment of online video?
This is a good question, and one that typically doesn’t get enough thought from publishers deploying video solutions. With customers, we like to start with ROI and work backwards. Although some publishers can measure ROI through media monetization, for the majority of sites implementing video, advertising is not truly a viable option for reasons of inventory, volume, content type, or logistics.
For most of our customers, ROI is measured in terms of cost of acquisition, or new revenue generated through product sales or services subscriptions.
In evaluating ROI on cost of acquisition, the typical yardstick is a cost-per-lead, as measured against other forms of SEO, SEM, advertising, email marketing, and demand generation. With products and services, it’s typically a cost-per-sale calculation. When sites are using search engine submission, and tracking new visitors through an analytics package such as Quantcast or Google Analytics, this is a fairly straightforward exercise. With viral initiatives, most marketers will need the assistance of their video provider to understand new traffic generated through click-through.