May 2016

Marketing Insights: For online video, quicker isn’t always better

Blog Online Video

For online video, particularly those on YouTube, the skip button is a constant worry of marketers. After all, a video ad does absolutely zero good if nobody watches it.

For many, the solution seemed obvious: make it short so people stay on it until the end. It makes sense when you think about how often you (or most people, anyway) look at the little timer at the bottom of an online video that tells you how much longer it’s going to play, before deciding whether to click off or not.

a recent online video study by a national marketer resulted in some surprising insights.

They compared the same video cut in three different lengths, 15-seconds, 30-seconds and over 2-minutes to see which spot was skipped the least.

The 30-second video ad was the clear winner, with fewer skips and highest view-through rates. Surprisingly, the shortest video at 15-seconds was the most skipped.

The 30-second video also tied the 2-minute version for brand favorability, making it stand out for both complete views and positive recall.

While these findings may surprise some, the deeper truth is that videos (at least good ones) are little stories and it is hard to tell a good story that involves the listener in 15 seconds.

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