Where Branded Content Dollars Are Going; Publishing companies gain share, ad agencies shrink [Survey]

Marketers continue to be in love with their own content. Spending on branded content is set to reach $1.8 million this year, or 37 percent of marketers’ ad budgets, up from $1.7 million in 2012, per a Custom Content Council survey.

The lion’s share of that is going into print. Spending on publications rose the most of three measured categories in 2013, to just over $1 million from $775,000 in 2012. Spending on electronic content was up 13.8 percent to $574,490 and spending on other content shrank to $264,423.

That would seem to bode ill for magazines. Seventy-three percent of respondents said branded content is better than magazine ads, a sizable increase over 2012, when 66 percent said so. Sixty-three percent said branded content was superior to TV advertising, 62 percent favored branded content to direct mail, and 59 percent said it trumps public relations.

One big question for marketers is whether to outsource their content creation or generate it in-house. Forty percent of respondents said they’re doing some outsourcing, down from 56 percent in 2012. But those who are only outsourcing are doing bigger projects, spending an average of more than $1 million this year, up 5.5 percent.

Those marketers are increasingly bypassing traditional ad agencies for other types of firms to handle their content creation. Magazine publishers who may be losing ad dollars to branded content seem to be making it up on the custom content side. The biggest recipient of outsourcing is publishing firms, which got 36 percent of that spending, up from 32 percent last year. Design firms and ad agencies saw their shares shrink. PR/marketing firms’ share rose slightly, and interactive firms’ share was flat.


Chinese Audience is the number 2 Consumer of videos [report]

China Has the Largest Home & Work Internet Population in the World as 347 Million Users Represent 54 Percent of All Internet Users in Asia Pacific according to new report.

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The 2013 China–Taiwan–Hong Kong  Digital Future in Focus report, providing an overview of key digital media usage trends in the region. The report includes detailed data and analysis on the prevailing activity in the social media, online video, search, and e-commerce markets. Also included is analysis of online market trends in Online Retail & Travel, Real Estate, News & Information, Career Services & Development, Automotive, and Beauty, Fashion & Style.

Key insights from the 2013 China–Taiwan–Hong Kong Digital Future in Focus report (#FutureinFocus) include:

  • China Has the Largest Home & Work Internet Population in the World as 347 Million Users Represent 54 Percent of All Internet Users in Asia Pacific
  • Young males between the ages of 15-24 are the heaviest internet users in Hong Kong, spending more than twice the amount of time online as compared to their mainland Chinese counterparts.
  • The online audience in mainland China skews younger than the global average, whilst Hong Kong’s online audience is more mature with 40 percent of internet users age 45 and older.
  • 87 percent of China’s web population views an average of 30 billion online videos each month, though Hong Kong has a higher videos per viewer ratio.
  • Chinese users spend nearly 2.5 hours on retail sites every month, the highest in the region and 187 percent higher than the global average

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At ReeldealHD stock video we create new content based on the latest trends for emerging markets. Our latest production covers Pharmaceutical/Logistics and Science; We are also covering Business (East meets West) beauty and a modern couple in an asperational apartment and as tourist in London.

 Are you interested in our content please get in touch erwin@reeldealhd.com if you like to license any of our clips or become a reseller.



Brands Moving Budgets From TV To Online Video

Following customers as they wander off from their television sets, big brand advertisers are starting to divert TV ad budgets to online video–or at least they intend to.

That’s one of the most interesting findings in video ad exchange Adap.TV’s semiannual “State of the Video Industry” report conducted with the digital media site Digiday. Of course, it would be fair to assume that Adap.TV, which was acquired by AOL in August for $405 million and recently helped AOL AOL +3.98% unseat Google GOOG +0.11% as the biggest seller of video ads online, would be seeing trends like this perhaps more than a disinterested party. But it polled some 900 ad agencies, advertisers, ad networks, and publishers, so it’s worth paying attention to.

Not surprisingly, the study found that video ads are exploding, thanks in part to automated technologies to make the buying process faster and easier as well as a jump in the amount of live and on-demand content coming to all screens. This year, brands upped their video ad budgets by 65% from 2012. Some 86% of brands and 91% of agencies expect to spend more on them next year.

The study found that 31% of brands see video ad budgets coming from broadcast TV, 13% from cable TV. Display, which to date has been the main target and may well continue to be for years to come, was cited by 30% of brands. “People aren’t watching reliably in front of their TV screens anymore,” instead watching on multiple screens, Adap.TV Chief Marketing Officer Kara Weber said in an interview. “It’s shifting how brands are looking to reach consumers.”

Throw agencies, which constitute the largest segment polled at 43% of respondents, into the mix with brands, and the percentages change considerably. So it’s probably risky to extrapolate the results of this study to actual budgets shifts. Some 21% of agencies and brands together see budgets coming from broadcast, 11% citing cable. Instead, brands agencies overall saw big increases in budgets coming from out-of-home advertising such as billboards and search advertising. Brands see very little shift to online video coming from search because they view search ads as a good way to drive more people to their online video.

Only 3% of brands and agencies taken together cited display, which seems odd. However, Weber said that’s likely the result of agencies still being organized with separate TV and digital operations, so budgets don’t flow freely between the operations.

All that said, Adap.TV cautions that any change won’t be large or quick:

Looking still more closely at how much broadcast budgets could shift in the coming year, it’s important to note that this year 42 percent of all video advertising buyers said there had been no change in their broadcast spending whatsoever. So, while they say a change is likely in 2014, it may not necessarily come to fruition. Furthermore, the largest group of buyers says the decline was 10 percent or less of their broadcast budgets. These numbers will continue to fluctuate as buyers examine their efforts in TV, digital and mobile video, and how that translates into a media mix that adapts with the rapidly converging nature of those worlds.

Another big trend is the way these video ads are bought–via automated buying known as programmatic. “In just the past two years, brand patronage of programmatic video channels such as exchanges and DSPs has roughly doubled, as direct to publisher purchases have declined by 15 percent,” the report says. A lot more advertisers and agencies are also buying mobile ads than they were three years ago.


But there remains at least one big obstacle to the movement of TV ad budgets to online video: a lack of universal metrics for determining how the reach, targeting, and performance of video ads. “Audience guarantees online were expected to be a game-changer for the ‘TV-ization’ of online video,” the study says. “Yet some 65 percent of brands and 70 percent of agencies say that existing measurement standards do not satisfy their need for audience guarantees.”

Branded Content raises purchase intent [Study]

Branded content, or its hyped cousin, native advertising, is supposed to combat ad fatigue when consumers are bombarded with ads all day, everywhere. The problem is measuring effectiveness. With no agreement on how to measure native (much less how to define it), it’s no surprise that publishers are eager to prove that native advertising, with its promise of premium rates, works.

Thus comes a new study by IPG Media and commissioned by Forbes Media that’s hoping to make the case for the format. IPG surveyed 2,259 participants from Forbes.com and showed them Web pages from the site containing branded content from ads in three verticals (auto, liquor and financial services).

Those looking at pages with branded content were 41 percent more likely to express an intent to buy the brand versus those who saw a regular Web page with no branded content. Similarly, those who saw branded content were 28 percent more likely to have a favorable view of the brand, the research, which IPG is publishing later today, showed.

Mark Howard, CRO of Forbes Media, said the study’s major takeaway for him was that the findings about how branded content can change a brand’s perception complement the traditional publishing metrics that Forbes uses in measuring the campaigns using its 3-year-old BrandVoice platform.

“It begins to answer that question, ‘how well does branded content work for brands to be able to forge a relationship with an audience?’ and ‘how does that dialogue begin to shift perceptions?'” Howard said. “We know it has impact, but we haven’t been able to quantify it before.”

The study also considered native advertising in its different iterations. When consumers saw branded content that was paired with a display ad from the same brand, they were more likely to recall the brand than if they had looked at a page that had branded content with no display ad at all.

Interestingly, though, adding a display ad to a page that had branded content didn’t help with purchase intent. Howard believes that might be because the brands measured (Chrysler, Woodford Reserve and Charles Schwab) are in categories where the path to purchase is long.

The study also looked at attitudes towards branded content depending on where it’s published. In a finding that will likely encouragement to publishers all over, the study showed that readers were 41 percent more likely to share branded content when they read it on Forbes.com versus on the brand’s own site.

It’s tempting to conclude that content, even branded, is seen by readers as more trusted and shareworthy if it originated on a premier publisher’s site versus a brand’s. But did those sharing branded content from Forbes.com know it was created by the brand as opposed to Forbes editorial staff? (Some publishers, Forbes included, have been accused of confusing readers by dressing up ads as editorial content.)

Howard admitted it’s possible, as survey participants weren’t expressly told that the content came from the brand, “but we go to great lengths to make sure it’s all transparently labeled on the site.”

So could native advertising be hitting a wall?

Marketers and publishers continue to fall all over themselves to create messaging that doesn’t look like advertising and that doesn’t annoy the reader. But the format is facing growing pains.

“Agencies aren’t ready to turn on a dime and do this,” Rey Peralta, svp, director of creative technology at Deutsch, New York, said during a panel discussion last week hosted by Livefyre. “Everyone has to get in the same room. It’s incredibly challenging.”

Jordan Kretchmer, founder and CEO of Livefyre, which acts as a middleman between publishers and advertisers by amplifying social conversation about brands across the Web, also pointed the finger at agencies. Seeing as they work on native ads for no extra money and are not set up to corral all those who need to be involved in the process, agencies “currently aren’t incentivized to really push for native ads and, therefore, are many times the blocker in getting a native campaign pushed through,” Kretchmer responded in an email. The process is ineffective and needs to change, he added.

Like agencies, clients often aren’t structured to take on native, often finding it is easier and faster to buy programmatic ads.

This friction is a problem for digital publishers that are banking on native and other premium-priced ad formats to stem the rush of ad dollars to lower-CPM programmatic ads. For marketers, it’s a chance to move beyond the hated banner ad and create messaging that’s more engaging.

It also doesn’t help that there’s no agreement on what native advertising is or on how to measure its effectiveness. And that’s before the content itself is even created, a process that by its nature is fraught because the ad has to serve the advertiser without annoying the reader.

The lack of a universally agreed-upon definition of native advertising is a drag on the process and can lead to missed opportunities.

Peralta recalled one case in which Deutsch handled the creative and another agency, Starcom MediaVest, did media planning. “There was nothing to point to and say, ‘This is what we’re doing,’” he said. “I had to get on 20 phone calls a day to explain it to all the partners.”

“We need to make it easier for our sellers to understand,” added Adam Solomon, vp of digital ad products and services at Time Inc.

For all its roadblocks, there seems to be agreement that native advertising isn’t just the flavor of the month. In a recent survey, 73 percent of Online Publishers Association members said they offer native ads, with the potential to reach 90 percent by year’s end.

Facebook Video Vs. YouTube Video Engagement [Study]

In SocialBakers engagement study, they found that both options performed similarly to each other when it came to Likes and Shares.  From January 22-27 they studied (with YouTube links being the obvious choice among admins) 3,684 YouTube links against 458 natively-uploaded Facebook videos.  There were double the comments with Facebook videos compared to YouTube links, as illustrated by the graph below:

socialbakegraph 606x293 Viral Reach, Engagement of Videos from Facebook Are Better Than YouTube Links?

But where there was a 40% engagement difference between Facebook videos and YouTube links.  Now, the reason SocialBakers gives for this is entirely reasonable: the videos show up not only in the posts but in the Fan Page video gallery, and people can watch the videos right there on Facebook without it having to jump over to YouTube.  This is something I’ve actually encountered with Facebook when it comes to the mobile site and YouTube links.  It can often take forever or not connect with YouTube at all.  The ability to watch a video completely on-site keeps viewers on the page and they don’t have to jump around to interact.

Further, in a study conducted from December 4th to March 3rd, SocialBakers found 10 times the viral reach with Facebook video versus YouTube links (YouTube still led in actual use, 4,371 to 554):

socialbakegraph2 606x278 Viral Reach, Engagement of Videos from Facebook Are Better Than YouTube Links?

SocialBakers avoided paid media here, as they wanted to measure the reach of a video that is more “honest” about how they reach consumers.

I think there’s no doubt that what SocialBakers found here had a lot to do with the ease-of-use for Facebook users to watch the video completely on-site as opposed to being re-directed to YouTube.  Obviously, it’s easier for those who share video to simply upload it to YouTube, which is what a brand/marketer is going to do anyway, and then provide the link which is very easy itself.  However, getting people to jump around, even though it’s not much, makes a pretty sizable difference.

Thanks to SocialBakers for their study!

Video Ad Loads and Completion Saw Record Increases [Study]

According to a new study by Freewheel, which just released their Video Monetization Report for Q4 and all of 2012, we’re not only being subjected to more ads than we did a year ago, but we’re also watching more of the ads.  Now, that might be because we’re being forced to watch the ads more, but the facts remain, we’re watching more ads and that’s a good thing, because content creators need the money and brands need the exposure.  Let’s take a look at some charts and graphs explaining these increases and where they are coming from. 

Freewheel’s Video Monetization Report

Freewheel’s key findings include:

  • The amount of professional, rights-managed video online increased , with total video views seeing an uptick of 23% year-over-year.
  • Video ad volume went up 47%, with long-form content (defined as 20 minutes or more) seeing an average of 9.4 video ads per video view, an increase of 6.9 from the same quarter last year.  Pre-roll volume increased 45% and mid-roll increased 60%.
  • Despite the fact that people are watching more ads, they are watching them to the finish more as well.  A 93% completion rate for content over 20 minutes, 81% for mid-form (5-20 min), and 68% for short-form (5 min or less).
  • 15-second ads have begun to dwindle in favor of 30-second ads.  34% of ads are :15 while 42% are :30, and this flips the script from 2011.
  • Non-computer viewing has increased 2% to 12% of all viewing.
  • Apple has 60% of the mobile viewing market, Android has 31%.

Here’s an overview of total-ads-to-total-video-views:

freewheelgraph674552 Video Ad Loads and Completion Saw Record Increases in 2012 [Study]

And here’s where we’re getting our ads pushed on us. You’ll notice that post-roll obviously died a quick death, because that’s not happening under any circumstance.  But at pre-roll and mid-roll, where they have your attention, they’re seeing nice increases:

freewheelposition672500 Video Ad Loads and Completion Saw Record Increases in 2012 [Study]

This graph shows the ad load for each form of content.  They’ve separated it into long-form (20 minutes), mid-form (5-20), and short (less than 5 minutes).  We’re being subjected to a ton more ads than we have before, especially with long-form content, where we’re seeing 9.4 ads per view:

freewheeladload674496 Video Ad Loads and Completion Saw Record Increases in 2012 [Study]

But, not only that, we’re watching them to completion more, as this graph illustrates:

freewheeladcompletion674496 Video Ad Loads and Completion Saw Record Increases in 2012 [Study]

In all, we saw completion rates increase over long-form content from 88% to 93%, mid-form rose from 68% to 81%, and short-form increased from 54% to 68%.  I still think there is some “forced watching,” where you can’t skip the ad, especially in content that is 20 minutes or longer, which may skew these results.

This also might have brought about the increase in length for an ad as well, as you’ll see an inversely-proportional graph of this phenomenon from 2011 to 2012:

freewheeladlength672498 Video Ad Loads and Completion Saw Record Increases in 2012 [Study]

As you can see, the 15-second ad dropped quarter-by-quarter while the 30-second ad increased over the same period.

So we’re being subjected to more, watching more, and watching for a greater amount of time.  This is all good news for the content creators and advertisers, but this could be heading for some kind of breaking point.  I’ve always thought that one of the appeals (and paradoxes) of online video is the lack of ads, and increasing the amount, especially the non-skippable ones, starts making online video more and more like TV.   But it’s not like creating online video is free…money needs to come from somewhere.  And it’s not like we’re being subjected to a whole bunch of ads…you’re seeing less than 1 ad for every video you see under 5 minutes, and just over 1 for every one you see between 5 and 20.

Global Stock image market Survey 2012 [Report]

In 2012 the GSIM Research Group carried out the first ever global survey on over 2,400 image suppliers on a truly worldwide basis. With a response rate of over ten per cent, the survey covers detailed information on 250 image suppliers that commercially trade usage rights on pre-produced still (photography, illustrations etc.) and moving images (video footages). The findings of this survey are published in a series of three reports of which the first one is now available.

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$2.88 Billion Gross Global Revenues

The global market estimate is the sum of two components.

The first component is a projection of the revenues reported in the survey to the global population  of image suppliers. This projection has been calculated as conservatively as possible in order to avoid overestimates. Based on the measure of median rather than mean revenues, the model predicts individual revenues for different segments of firm-sizes. According to the estimate in 460 micro (single-member) companies generate $17 million; another 1,077 micro firms achieve  $272 million, and 397 small firms gain $1.03 billion.  The combined revenues of these micro and small businesses add up to $1.32 billion in 2011.

The second component includes financial reports  on the large players as well as moderate estimates for ten medium-sized firms in our sample. Based on media  reports and expert estimates, the four largest suppliers  Getty, Corbis, Shutterstock and Fotolia account for a total of $1.4 billion In addition, medium-sized photo agencies such as Dreamstime, Alamy and several  anonymous respondents in the survey sample make up for another $156 million.

As a result of this composite estimation approach, we calculate $2.88 billion gross global revenues in the  stock image market in 2011 .

Only 18% according to the research is original content the other material is re-licensed via 3d parties.

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The research distinguished three large segments in the market: still images (photos) account for 94 per cent of total  image stock, while moving images (video footage) and other images represent 3 per cent. Several footage suppliers reported their image stock in hours of recorded content rather than in number of units. Thus, we underestimate the true size of stock video content.  With still photos, traditional rights-managed images  (64%) clearly prevail over royalty-free and microstock  (30%).

So this figure for video seems very low. According to the latest available report from Getty in 2008 this was then 11% of their business and the growth specially in microstock footage has been large. I presume only video resellers were not included in this report.