Know your audience is one of those sayings that applies to just about everyone, from keynote speakers to stand-up comedians—and yes, site publishers, too.
When your objective is to boost your video ad CPM rates, you've got to get inside your viewers' heads. Determining who they are, how they're finding their way to your site, and what they hope to see when they get there allows you to tweak your video viewing experience to meet their specific needs.
In this fourth installment of our Video Publishing Best Practices Series, we'll look at how customizing your video strategy to your unique audience can lead to a better return on investment for your advertising partners.
1. Make Sure Your Views Come From Real Traffic
Before you get started, you first have to make sure that your visitors are human. Fraudulent site traffic is an ongoing concern, as digital traffic generated by bots impacts video advertising by diluting the effectiveness of your clients' investments.
As explained by eMarketer, video and mobile are especially prone to fraud as they are “higher value areas.” The company also notes that as fraud protection technology becomes more sophisticated, so do efforts to “deceive” buyers.
This has advertisers collaborating with their vendor and publishing partners to reduce bot fraud and protect the integrity of their video impressions. As eMarketer puts it, “advertisers, legitimate sellers and industry organizations continue to push for greater accountability from those continuing to perpetrate it or permit its presence in the ecosystem.”
2. Understand Your Users' Characteristics
The more you know about your audience demographics and what type of content resonates with them, the better equipped you are to attract premium advertisers aiming to reach that specific group of consumers. Publishers that tap their site analytics and assess the online behavior of their audience can pass this knowledge along to their clients, and that in turn can help justify higher video ad rates.
Providing your advertising partners with deeper insight into your audience's demographic makeup will improve their ability to tailor content to your visitors' interests and needs. Psychographic data like hobbies, values, and lifestyle have the potential to inform advertising campaigns, providing a clear path to video engagement.
3. Drive More Visits and Impressions by Promoting Your Videos on Social Media
Knowing your viewers' interests is only part of the equation. Discovering how they found you presents an opportunity to prime the videos you have to offer and increase the chances visitors will click to watch.
This is especially true if your visitors are coming from a social site. According to comScore's 2017 U.S. Cross-Platform Future in Focus report, social media and digital video account for a third of all time spent online, making them the two most popular Internet-based activities. Why not combine their power for the benefit of your advertisers? If you're driving viewers from your social media accounts to site pages that feature video, it's a good idea to promote the presence of those videos so consumers know what they'll be getting. Since Internet users are already likely to be on the lookout for video content, highlighting yours can up the odds that they'll decide to watch.
4. Create a Custom Video Experience
Building a video experience that's customized to the look and feel of your site will help your property stand out in a crowded publishing marketplace. This includes branding your video player with a customized CSS skin and incorporating your logo and other on-brand visual elements into your video experience.
It may sound simple, but creating a video experience that your users want to watch will inevitably attract advertisers, so polishing yours to a shine is a critical step toward increased video CPMs. Not only do consumers gravitate toward site content that's aesthetically pleasing, but they recognize consistency. Offering a uniform design that reflects your brand identity enhances both loyalty and brand recall.
5. Understand Where and When Users Engage With Your Content
A solid strategy for getting to know your site users wouldn't be complete without the knowledge of how they engage with your video content. Even with limited resources to analyze big data, there are still ways in which to gain a greater understanding of your audience's behavior and video needs.
One approach is to test your content on social media, segmenting by subject matter, style, and mood, and measuring each video's response rate. You might learn that your users prefer in-depth documentaries to light and funny fare, or that video profiles of individuals perform better than content on broader topics.
Another option is diving into your site analytics to get a more comprehensive understanding of what your users watching, how often they're tuning in, how they respond to recommended videos, what time of day they're likely to view content, and on which devices. This kind of information is invaluable when it comes to optimizing your video offerings and improving engagement for your brand and your advertisers alike.
Read on to the next post, Part 5 in our "Video Publishing Best Practices" series for five more tips for improved video engagement.
Contact JW Player today to talk about how we can help you improve your site's viewer experience in order to achieve higher video CPMs.