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Video Marketing More Effective Than TV Advertising for Airlines

  • Posted On February 14, 2014
  • Categorized In News
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I guess we all still remember back in 2009 when David Caroll created his viral video about how United Airlines broke his guitar and refused to pay for it. That video generated 13.8 million views and it seems the airline industry learned a big lesson from that and have been doing a fair amount of viral videoing of their own. In fact, viral video marketing is rapidly eclipsing television as the most effective channel for travel marketing, especially for marketers targeting younger demographics, according to the latest Skift Report.

In the report,, the travel intelligence and news company, says that for a largely commodified and opaque business, video marketing is more important for airlines than most travel-related businesses. As a result, airlines are among the most successful producers of video marketing in the travel business. Even the once boring in-flight safety video is asserting itself as a chance to define and differentiate the airline brand.

Here’s a quick catch up of the most successful Airline Videos to date:

Turkish Airlines – Kobe vs Mese – 138.8 million views

WestJet -Christmas Miracle – 35.5 million views

Air New Zealand – An unexpected briefing – 11.5 million views

Virgin America – Safety Video – 8.8 million views

In the report, Rob Ciampa, VP Marketing of Pixability offers a key reason why viral video brand building matters to Airlines:

The Airline Industry is very commodified ….people shop for the lowest prices….but when we find fares that are pretty close, how do we choose? This is where brand matters! What is it about the brand, the aircraft, where they fly? What about the company’s philosophy? This is where exciting, unique and sharable videos come into play.

The report also offers information on trends, stats, and tips on best practices for airline marketers using video with examples of the latest experiments in the industry with Vine and Instagram. It’s probably essential reading if you’re a front line marketer for an airline and maybe they won’t make the same mistake as All Nippon Airways who have very recently apologized individually to customers who call to complain about racial stereotyping in their new television commercial that has gone viral with 600,000 in 4 weeks.


Truth about online video

  • Posted On March 12, 2013
  • Categorized In News
  • Written By

Video can be a valuable asset in your inbound marketing content mix. In fact, by 2013, 90% of internet traffic is expected to be video. But getting people to sit through your videos can be challenging, considering 33% of viewers say “no thank you” and move on after watching just 30 seconds. 44% lose interest and leave at the 1-minute mark, and 60% bail on your video after 2 minutes.

Your video is being judged on its content, presentation, production quality, style, and the valuable information it provides. What this tells us is that your content must be truly remarkable to maintain your audience’s attention.

Nowadays, most brands need to create compelling content to fuel social media and content marketing campaigns.  Multimedia assets generate more audience engagement, and video is the most compelling format of all.

It’s a digital world. From the web, to TV, to mobile phones, the digital age is here to stay, and businesses are increasingly realising its potential to reach not just a wider audience, but any audience at all. With research showing that over 90% of us use the Internet to research products or services before we commit to buy – with a growing percentage of this from mobile technologies – it’s essential for businesses to make use of the opportunities offered by digital media.

Online marketing spend has tipped the scales and overtaken print. It’s something many experts predicted but not quite so soon, with the rise of online tools to make marketing your company quick, easy, and most importantly, cost effective.

Viral video has become a term used loosely for an online video. But here’s the thing, something has to BECOME viral. If somebody passes your content from one computer or mobile phone to another, or talks about your content via the web, your content has become viral. But creating a successful viral campaign relies on a number of factors, most of which tend to be based on ‘hard work’ or ‘big budgets’. Most of you probably have a Facebook or LinkedIn account. You’ll have ‘friends’ or ‘contacts’, and like you’ll be involved in the ever-popular race to see who has the most ‘friends’. We’ve all received an invite from an old school mate that we barely spoke to then, and don’t see why we should now.

Ah, but your 300 or so ‘friends’ may well have another 300 or so ‘friends’, and they may have 300 ‘friends’ more, and so on. Soon you can get into some pretty big numbers. Now, let’s say you get a video produced and you ask your 300 ‘friends’ to pass it on to their 300 ‘friends’. If they like it, they will, and you can start to get a viral message that people will be happy to pass on for you – all for the cost of a single video. Viral video can have a terrific effect if you’re selling consumable goods, but what about ‘business to business’? Well, that’s the really clever bit.

Most companies now have a website, and most use the web to either sell their products and services or promote them. Video is a great way to engage an audience. The single most powerful way of promoting your company is through testimonials, using the opinions of real people that have worked with you before and are happy to tell the world how great you are. Most companies use this form of marketing as soon as they get a happy client. They add a case study and publish both on their site, along with other forms of collateral. To be effective, they need to be well written, short and to the point. However, most are not, meaning the person that reads them turns off after a short while – this is where video takes over.

Video content is engaging. There’s an old saying that ‘people need to talk to people’, and it’s true. What you have written over six pages of A4, you can get across in less than a minute with minimal involvement from your potential customer. This can be hosted on your website and include any number of calls to action. It’s also very useful as a demonstration for your products – just glance through YouTube to find demonstrations of everything from turning on a vacuum cleaner to how to build a nuclear bunker.

Video is also used very effectively in online advertising. How many times have you visited a website to see a video MPU (Multi Positional Unit) running on the page? It grabs your attention almost immediately, and here’s where we start to see how this works for B2B. Most businesses use the web to research information about their industry. Most of these will probably advertise in their print versions, with little knowledge of how many people have seen their advertisement. Sure we have the ABC and PPA audits, but does a publisher know if John Smith has read his free circulated publication? No, but they’ll know if he’s looked at their website and clicked to view a video. Video MPUs on an industry-specific website, where viewers will be from a certain industry and in a work mindset, are perfectly targeted pieces of marketing.

They can even be placed in a dedicated ‘channel’ – so your accountancy software is placed in the ‘accountancy’ tab on a business website, for example – ensuring that your audience is most likely thinking about researching, upgrading or buying what you’re selling. Now imagine if your video MPU greeted your potential customers as they hit that page – a person talking to a person. Clever video marketing is always about engagement. How do I engage my audience as quickly as possible and make them listen to what I have to say? What would make me watch and take notice? What would make me click on the video for more information? These are questions that a specialist marketing consultancy should talk through with you for any form of marketing, and it’s the same with video.

Video also replaces presentations. How many meetings have you been to, where you have either endured or had to present a 30-page PowerPoint presentation? Ever switched off or noticed your client slowly die of boredom before your very eyes? Video can enliven any presentation and help get your point across in an engaging and entertainimg way. It can run through any part of the offering, in stages, and even be interacted with by the sales person.

And it’s so flexible – it’s easy to view, it can be left with the client on a USB key, and also hosted on your site. It can even be used at exhibitions and conferences. Mix this format with some intelligent digital marketing and you have a marketing medium that not only delivers results, but is trackable, controllable and engaging.

With a sharp increase in video for web comes a sharp increase in video production companies. Type ‘video for web’ into a search bar and see just how many companies are available. Three years ago there were just a few of us, now every Tom, Dick and Hitchcock who knows how to point a camera and use a cheap editing suite will try to convince you of their ‘creativity’ and what’s more, just how little you need to spend. Now here’s the thing. You have different spectra: the expensive, the competitive and the super competitive. If you care about your brand, you should certainly avoid a company that offers you a video for the price of a chocolate bar and a can of pop. We have often been called in to reshoot work for companies who have fallen foul of the ‘too good to be true’ trap.

At the other end of the scale are the expensive video production companies. They can produce something close to Hollywood standard, but will leave you very little budget to help market it. Or you go straight down the middle and get TV and film trained crews, directors and editors, who know all the tricks of the trade to get you a TV quality video for a snip of the price. The key here is to do your research and vet the company. All of which should have a showreel to display their work, but take a look at the individual pieces, as a cleverly put together showreel can mask a whole heap of bad work with quick edits and foot tapping music. Listen to sound and framing. Look to see if the production makes sense or whether the messaging has been blurred by the director’s ‘creative vision’!


Article taken from Reel Seo and Hubspot



4 Tips for Developing Fresh Video Content Ideas

  • Posted On September 7, 2012
  • Categorized In News
  • Written By

4 Tips for Developing Fresh Video Content Ideas

1. Pay attention to what’s working with your audience. It’s often difficult working through what is good and what is not when it come to ideas for video content. Many creators put up everything whether it is good or not. That is a good way to learn, but it’s also a very slow way to grow subscribers.
2. Create a structured schedule. Not only will this make it easier for you to plan content, but it will let your subscribers know what to expect from your channel.
3. Find ways you can utilize an idea for more than one video. For example, Josh will produce a video of the song parodies, a Q&A video, a behind the scenes video and a a final video where he performs live. With this structure he essentially has one video that requires a lot of work to come up with and put together and the others are supplemental videos that provide good content for his subscribers but are easy for him to produce.
4. Utilize a creative team to come up with ideas. Make sure you have a group of people – friends, family, etc that you can bounce ideas off of to help brainstorm good ideas for your content. This will not only help you to come up with more unique ideas but this way you have individuals that can help let you know if an idea is good or not.

Source: How to Develop Fresh Ideas for Creative Video Content [Creator’s Tip #55]
©2012 ReelSEO

Top Lessons Learned in Marketing Video Across Social Networks and What Works

  • Posted On August 7, 2012
  • Categorized In News
  • Written By

5 Top Lessons Learned while Going Social with Video

Here are a few hints and tips based on my experience so far, mostly based on trial and error. I also looked at what others were doing, or interested me, and what seemed to work. But above all I found that personality and reciprocity has been the key to rewarding social media success so far.

Learning 1: Keep it Going, Measure & Adjust 

Social media marketing does not have a ‘set it and forget it’ option. Not only do I have to keep my video posts interesting at all times, topical where possible, and engaging for receivers. I also try to keep a focus on how much influence and impact I am having every day. This allows me to adjust my strategy accordingly, often on a day-to-day basis.

There are a variety of tools to measure ongoing success: I have a preference for Klout. It gives a handy breakdown of social media tools and their effectiveness over the preceding 90 day period. For example, right now I can see that my Google+ influence is lacking, whereas FaceBook is by far the strongest – so I could either refocus on Google+, or concentrate on video promo on FaceBook: a conclusion I could never reach if I simply logged on, posted a video, and logged off.

It also has the benefit of allowing me to give a K+ to those who have influenced me, or who I would like to engage with – it’s another avenue for making contact and strengthening existing connections.

Learning 2: Business and Pleasure Never Shall Meet

keep these separate from my brand building. Easy in Google+, but requiring a greater sense of self-regulation on other platforms. Combining the social aspect with the corporate looks unprofessional and messy, and can be confusing for receivers, unsure if yours is a personal account or not. It’s just the old maxim, updated for the world of social media: in the real world I wouldn’t want to bore my buddies with quarterly analysis, or show serious corporate clients pics of my brother’s birthday party – so I don’t do it on social networks.

Learning 3: Quality, not Quantity

I have never bought Twitter followers, or ‘likes’ on FaceBook. It’s an empty stat, a false economy with little or no return. My experience is that it’s better to build your following by sharing relevant video content, interesting news, and an occasional marketing message. Not a single individual in my network has been ‘bought’. This means I know they are all there willingly, out of interest, and because they like what I do.

I also endeavor to bring some color to my video posts by showing my personality in the comments I  attach to them – obviously there’ll be some promotional element – but I try to make it personal, by having conversations, ‘liking’ or re-tweeting the video posts of others, and commenting on interesting videos and views.  I find I usually get a response in kind.

Also, I find showing that you are an individual by making it topical is important: breaking off from the my usual posts to use a twitter trending hashtag, or comment on something newsworthy. Not only does this make it interesting for receivers (and potentially expose me to a much larger audience), it makes the whole process more interesting and varied.  If you look at my tweets you’ll see what I mean:

Learning 4: Reciprocity is Key

Even something as simple as thanking another user for a retweet or mention can start off a productive relationship, and will make them more likely to be aware of, and take note of, my future video posts. I’ve found such actions make it much more likely that my posts will be included in online magazines (e.g., which I then re-tweet and post to further mine and their coverage – so everyone’s a winner.

Reciprocity and communication has helped me build up useful friends and allies, who add to my online experience and my content. For example, this is true to the extent that some social network friends have been involved in my previous articles on – discussing their view on what makes a video go viral, or being quoted on the benefit of having a vlog for their business.

I’ve had several interesting twitter-chats with the good people at Forbidden Tech. A quote from Canadian artist Retrophiliac added some color and a personal touch to a vlogging article. And I’ve been added to various people’s Twitter and Klout lists and FaceBook groups, ranging from ‘tech’ to ‘video’ and ‘interesting people’; this wouldn’t have happened if I had only ever popped onto social media, thrown a promotion at people, then left. Who’d want to talk to me or include me then?

Learning 5:  It’s a Two-way Street

I personally find it annoying when other promoters using Social Media don’t engage, but simply ‘post and leave’. Whatever the platform being used, I always remind myself that it’s a community, not a free billboard. When users only log on to promote, taking no interest in what I’m doing and failing to interact, I see through it straight away.

So whether it’s a re – tweet, a positive comment or awarding K+ on Klout, I’ve found it will almost certainly be gratefully received and often returned at some point by those who follow me. Even when, out of the blue, an individual ads a topic to my list on Klout, I don’t mind – it’s not an imposition, and it gives me a sense of how I am influencing people – and where I’m failing to.

Be Yourself & The Golden Rule

Source: Top Lessons Learned in Marketing Video Across Social Networks and What Works for Me!
©2012 ReelSEO

HTML 5 Video SEO

  • Posted On July 20, 2012
  • Categorized In News
  • Written By

The track element has a lot of uses but for the ReelSEO audience, I think one of the best will be the ability to attach a ton of metadata to those HTML5 videos that we’re all starting to publish. Sure, it is meant for other things like subtitles and closed captioning, which are going to be a requirement on pretty much all online video from the look of how things have been proceeding, but any leg up in video SEO is something worthy of discussion.


Here’s what our own Mark Robertson had to say about the new track element and it’s potential implications for SEO:

“Its nice to see that the W3C moving forward with a standard to associate and display temporal metadata with HTML5 video, in this case for timed-text (closed captions, subtitles, etc…).  Many people have been asking for this for some time and in addition to it being incredibly important in terms of accessibility (especially in mobile devices), there are some clear and promising implications with regard to video SEO.

We dont yet know how the search engines will interpret the text track content but I think it’s quite safe to assume that they’ll leverage the content in the future to assist in better interpreting the context of videos on landing pages.  They’ve already implemented schema markup for video transcripts, but, the video sitemap specification still lacks the ability to include support for closed captions. For the most part, the more context you can provide in the form of text, the better for video SEO.  So, though this is very new, it is an exciting and important development for HTML5 video.”

HTML5 WebVTT and the W3

The W3, is the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is an international community to develop Web standards. That being said, they’ve recently created a new one called WebVTT, Web Video Text Tracks, a format intended for marking up external text track resources. It looks a little something like this… hit it!

00:00.000 --> 01:24.000 

00:00.000 --> 00:44.000 

00:44.000 --> 01:19.000 

01:24.000 --> 05:00.000 
Scrolling Effects 

01:35.000 --> 03:00.000 
Achim's Demo 

03:00.000 --> 05:00.000 
Timeline Panel

The WebVTT standard required a file be encoded in UTF-8 and labeled as MIME type/text/vtt.

Here’s a quick structure breakdown as well as some cue timings from the specification:

  1. WebVTT timestamp representing the start time offset of the cue. The time represented by this WebVTT timestamp must be greater than or equal to the start time offsets of all previous cues in the file.
  2. One or more U+0020 SPACE characters or U+0009 CHARACTER TABULATION (tab) characters.
  3. The string “–>” (U+002D HYPHEN-MINUS, U+002D HYPHEN-MINUS, U+003E GREATER-THAN SIGN).
  4. One or more U+0020 SPACE characters or U+0009 CHARACTER TABULATION (tab) characters.
  5. WebVTT timestamp representing the end time offset of the cue. The time represented by this WebVTT timestamp must be greater than the start time offset of the cue.

It offers both horizontal and vertical text orientation and the text can be positioned by giving a percentage from the edge of the frame. Also configurable are text sizes, alignment (start, middle, end), and metadata.

Additionally, CSS properties can be applied to  WebVTT node objects. CSS formatting allowed includes alignment, font, color, background, white-space, font-style, font-weight, text-decoration, display (for CSSRUBY), text-outline, text-shadow, and line-height.

Some of you might say “damn, that looks familiar!” Well that could be due to it being based on the SubRip software program SRT file format which was used as the basis for the WebVTT text track file format.

How to Embed Subtitles/Closed Captions/WebVTT in HTML5 Video

So you’ve got a video and you’ve got a VTT file, how do you pair them up?

In your <video> tag:

<track kind="subtitles" src="subtitles.vtt" />

What Else Can Be in a WebVTT file?

You can do cool things like define who is speaking:

00:18.000 --> 00:20.000
<v Roger Bingham>And with me is Neil deGrasse Tyson

There are three main uses for the VTT file, subtitles and captions were previously mentioned but they could also be used for descriptions which are mainly for things that need to be audio, via a screen reader or other software, for people who are unable to see the video. Essentially, it’s a vocal description of the action in the scene.


There’s a vague, mostly undefined optional piece of text that can be added to the VTT files. It seems that you could put just about anything in there provided it doesn’t interfere with standard VTT cues. One example, from LongTail Video, is the triggering of Javascript events that can then update a map.

From a monetization angle, they might also be used to coordinate companion display ads or other things exterior to the HTML5 <video> tag, update other elements in the page, (like store locaters, discounts, coupons, etc).

Browser Compatibility

As with all new things in the browser world, there’s little support currently, but they’re working on it.

For Chrome you have to enable the <track> element (again see that LongTail Video article). Mozilla has no support at present but are developing it.

If you’re like many of us, you are probably using a more robust video player, like JWPlayer (which I use at GDN) that does both Flash and HTML5, it might already support subtitles via SRT. LongTail stated that version 6.0 of JWP will also have WebVTT integration.

VTT: The Ultimate Video SEO Solution?

We have been using schema markup, subtitles and captions for a while now but with the new WebVTT as a standard it could completely throw open the doors of video search engine optimization and allow for a more cost effective way to get the interior of your video files better understood by Google and Bing, and that my friends, is awesome. For now, at least you can start getting those text track files together for the future.

Source: HTML5 Video SEO with Closed Captions: Track Element Standard (WebVTT)
©2012 ReelSEO

Where to place your ads

  • Posted On July 10, 2012
  • Categorized In News
  • Written By

Starting this month, we’re going to separate the comScore industry-wide online video viewing estimates for May and the video advertising numbers and recommendations by yours truly. It’s a good month to do it since we’ve topped a record of over 10 billion online video ads served in May according to the comScore Video Metrix.

Video advertising numbers are on the rise across the board. Not only were there around 500 million more ads shown last month over April, but the percentages of viewing minutes and videos is on the rise. It’s a slippery slope the industry is treading on right now.
According to comScore:
Video ads accounted for 21.6 percent of all videos viewed and 1.9 percent of all minutes spent viewing video online.
When you take into account that comScore says any piece of content that is interrupted by an ad pod accounts for 2 videos in their numbers (or 2 ad pods accounts for 3 videos, etc) these numbers are becoming, well, troubling. comScore also says that, “duration of the average online content video was 6.5 minutes, while the average online video ad was 0.4 minutes.”
We can’t make any general assumptions, like every video viewed had a pre-roll or a mid-roll really, but it really starts to knock down the number of actual videos viewed in regards to video ads. I think it’s safe to say that the number of video ads is overall video viewing online is closer to 40-50%, if every video has either a pre-, mid- or post-roll ad attached. It’s almost like, for every video ad there were 3.6 comScore video views. That pretty much amounts to a single video ad on 10 billion pieces of content, making 20 million comScore video views, and another 16 billion videos, so like 26 billion videos overall. But really, who has a single ad mid-roll pod these days?
The ultimate takeaway, I think, is that there are probably enough ads running against online video. If the trend continues to increase it could start to drive people away from viewing altogether or increase abandonment rates on some places versus others. It’s a slightly disturbing trend right now, ad numbers up, viewing numbers down.
My Online Video Advertising Placement Recommendations
As always, I like to stack up the comScore numbers for video advertising networks and then determine where best to place video ads, at least based on unique viewers, ad frequency and number of ads shown. That last one is usually just an indicator that an online video advertising network is stable and growing where the other two numbers are far more important to me. These recommendations don’t take into account things like number of platforms (mobile, PC, connected TV) available from the ad network, ease of use, variety of offerings, etc. It’s purely a numbers game.
If you’ve been reading my monthly pieces you know that Brightroll has been raking in first place on a regular basis and that Specific Media and are constantly in the running for the top three. Now that this is its own stand alone article, I can expand my thoughts.
Top Five Video Ad Networks for Ad Placement
#1 Brightroll – Stay no target….stay on target…
In a recent interview with Tod Sacerdoti he said Brightroll clients have tasked them with maintaining a high reach and a low ad frequency (ads per unique viewer per month) and I have to say, they’re dead on.
With 673 million ad minutes in May they still maintained a seriously low 10.3 frequency and a massive 35.8% reach (of the total US population). However, at the rate that things are going, there might be a change soon because number two is putting on some pressure.
#2 Specific Media – Kicking out the bass (low frequency)
Specific Media crushes everyone this month with a frequency of just 7. Bravo! Well Done! Their reach is pretty smokin’ hot as well at 31.9% meaning they’re only about 4 points behind number one. That could spell serious trouble in next month’s numbers if Specific Media signs on a sizable new publisher. They’ve only got about 359 million ad minutes (53.3% of Brightroll) on about 63.6% of the video ads served. Shorter ads making up for less placements?
#3 – the balancing act
There are several networks that have either a good reach and terrible frequency or vice versa. manages to maintain a balance of both with a decent reach of 24.1% and a frequency of just 13.1. Those aren’t terrible. Throw in the fact that they showed 966 million ads totaling around 556 million minutes and you can see that they’re stable and in the running to move up a slot if they could expand their reach.
#4 Google -Stuck in the middle again…
Google shows some promise with a decent reach of 24.3% and a middle-to-high 18.6 frequency. I think there might be something wrong though because according to other comScore numbers, Google sites had some 84% of all online video viewers, which could be as high as 48% of the total US population (assuming there are around 318 million now). Still, placing ads here is pretty much, placing ads at YouTube and that doesn’t sound like a bad place to do it. They also showed some 1.39 billion ads which were just a meager 143 million minutes. Mega-short ad spots?
#5 Auditude -A firm Adobe abode
Auditude makes a good showing as well with a decently low 11.6 frequency. However, they’re lacking in the reach department with just a 16% share of the total US Population. They showed just shy of 600 million ads and totaled up 219 million minutes. They’re a couple big publisher deals away from jumping up the chart.
The Worst of the Worst
In my personal algorithm, Hulu and ESPN are dreadful showing some massively negative index value. But, they also have some interesting appeal. They have highly-valuable, brand-safe content, they have very specific demographics. They have long-form content. It all probably also adds some to some massive CPM rates as well ESPN for its part showed the lowest number of ads but had the second highest frequency and a seriously terrible reach. Hulu meanwhile showed the most ads, had the highest frequency and the second-to-last reach.
The original comScore numbers
Top U.S. Online Video Ad Properties Ranked by Video Ads* Viewed
May 2012
Total U.S. – Home and Work Locations
Ad Videos Only (Content Videos Not Included)
Property Video Ads (000) Total Ad Minutes (MM) Frequency (Ads per Viewer) % Reach Total U.S. Population
Total Internet : Total Audience 10,076,499 4,517 63.6 51.7
Hulu 1,666,846 725 55.5 9.8
Google Sites 1,385,273 143 18.6 24.3
BrightRoll Video Network** 1,130,983 673 10.3 35.8† 966,204 556 13.1 24.1
TubeMogul Video Ad Platform** 896,787 259 17.4 16.8
Specific Media** 751,542 359 7.7 31.9
Tremor Video** 725,944 408 14.1 16.8
SpotXchange Video Ad Marketplace† 615,290 326 13.5 14.9
Auditude, Inc.** 569,862 219 11.6 16.0
ESPN 490,103 169 28.6 5.6
Broken down by Reach (highest to lowest)
Specific Media
Tubemogul – Tremor Media(tied)

Source: Record 10B Video Ads Served in May 2012, Where Should You Place Yours?
©2012 ReelSEO