In 2011, many companies knew they needed to move beyond simply creating and distributing ads for their products. They needed to create content that attracts, motivates and engages an audience, and thus inspire viral sharing for their campaigns.
This trend fueled tremendous growth for social video in 2011. While many brands were just testing the waters early in the year, we’re now seeing hundreds of companies get into the game and make increasingly large investments in media buys for their content.
We saw tremendous innovation around new types of campaigns this year to address the evolving non-linear media consumption habits of consumers. We’re even seeing new job roles crop up at agencies, such as “Earned Media Directors,” to meet the growing need for strategic, sharable content.
We believe 2012 will bring yet another set of quantum leaps in the space. Here are five social video trends that are already emerging.
1. Integration of Original Branded Content into Broader Marketing Campaigns
As brands gain more experience creating and distributing original video content online (not just repurposing television commercials), they will begin to integrate these assets more tightly with their larger marketing campaigns. Old Spice still reigns as one of the best examples of a highly memorable campaign that seamlessly merged both 30-second television spots with longer form, original online video content. Expect to see more brands weaving together TV buys and longer-form online videos in 2012.
2. More Organic Video Experiences on Sites
As publishers discover the potential in social video, many are looking for creative ways to integrate this content into their site experience. We’re already seeing an explosion of “native monetization” methods such as YouTube Promoted Videos, Twitter Promoted Tweets and Facebook Sponsored stories. The combination of well-integrated sponsored experiences with high-quality brand video content will only accelerate this trend. Expect to see “native” social video advertising experiences extend much more broadly across the web in the coming year.
3. Improved Earned Media Science
Agencies are increasingly hiring earned media directors to help improve their understanding of the value of earned media and their ability to drive results. Additionally, more services are emerging that will help companies gauge social influence online. This will allow brands to take big steps in 2012 to have more specific earned media goals and strategies.
4. Widespread Adoption of CPV Pricing
In the last 12 months, we have seen a much broader segment of the advertising industry embrace the cost-per-view (CPV) pricing model. This phenomenon has been market-driven, vetted and employed by most of the major media buying agencies in the U.S. A CPV is an intended engagement/action akin to a cost-per-click (CPC). Advertisers are increasingly finding it a more direct way to engage target audiences, compared to traditional CPM buying (which at its core, especially with regards to pre-roll, is a way to measure disruptive advertising, as opposed to choice-based advertising).
5. Dedicated Social Video Budgets
As advertisers become more well-versed in creating original video content and distributing it through social web channels, they will develop dedicated budgets and KPIs. Because they were largely experimental programs in the past, social video advertising campaigns were often lumped in with overarching digital advertising budgets that also included pre-roll or displayed advertising buys. Social video campaigns are now moving out of experimental budgets and into distinct programs with specific viewership and earned media goals.
Images courtesy of Flickr, jonsson, iStockphoto, Courtney Keating, DarmirK