In the northern hemisphere we’re sweating through summer, but Q4 is on the horizon, and your video technology should be optimized and ready to perform. After all, Q4 brings the highest demand for video ad inventory as marketers push their holiday season messages.
This raises a simple but essential question: Is your business prepared?
To help, we've compiled five key questions to consider to help you make sure that your video platform is ready for Q4.
1. Does Your Video Player Support Creative Ad Formats Across Devices?
To drive revenue from your content, your video tech must allow you to show ads across devices, including smartphones, tablets, and OTT platforms. According to eMarketer, more than 152 million people watched video on their mobile phones in 2016. And that number is expected to reach 170 million by 2018. If your ads only run on desktop, you're missing out on valuable opportunities to monetize views.
Your video player should also support standard ad formats, such as VPAID (Video Player-Ad Interface Definition). VPAID allows publishers to run rich and interactive ads. If your video tech doesn't support this format, certain ads won't run and you'll lose revenue.
2. Have you made the switch away from Flash?
3. Are you ready for browser updates that will affect auto-play?
In the coming months, leading browsers Chrome and Safari plan to release updates that will prevent videos from playing if they are set to autostart with sound on. This will have a significant impact for publishers and viewers. As reported recently in Business Insider, currently we’re seeing that 65% of plays in Chrome and 53% of plays in Safari are autostart, and only about half of those are set to mute. Publishers should take this opportunity to audit their settings. In general making sure your players are viewable and that viewers have intent to watch will help you attract premium advertisers and get the best CPMs and ad fill.
4. Are You Maximizing Viewer Engagement?
Providing your viewers the chance to continue watching relevant videos is key. Recommended content can appear within a player overlay at the end of the video, as thumbnails adjacent to the player, or within a separate widget on the page. The most efficient option is a content discovery solution that’s built into your video platform and uses algorithms to build real-time, automated playlists that are personalized to watchers' interests. These extra views add up fast, helping you to create more inventory with limited additional work.
Publishers using JW Player’s Recommendations solution have seen an average lift of 30% to 50% in video plays and ad revenue, with some experiencing 100% grown or more based on their specific content type and implementation.
5. Do You Have Access to Real-Time Analytics?
It's not enough anymore to analyze historical performance. You also want to track how videos perform while they're building momentum. This will help you identify opportune moments to drive more engagement and revenue, and make achieving your Q4 monetary goals possible.
For instance, you want to be able to see current viewers by location, device, and domain. With this data, you can optimize your ads and distribution methods in real time.
Your video tech should also provide a robust suite of analytics. Beyond just views, your platform should report embeds, replays, drop-offs, completes, and time-watched. It should also integrate with your own analytics platform, such as Google Analytics, Adobe, and comScore. This will help you seamlessly gauge performance without missing a beat.
If your business is ad-supported, now’s the time to audit your video tech stack and ensure that you’re primed and ready for Q4. Some updates can be quick and simple - like turning on Recommendations if you haven’t already. Others might require more testing. In either case it’s a great time to get started, and we’re here to help!
Don't miss out on critical opportunities to grow your audience and drive revenue. Contact JW Player today to make sure your video tech is ready for Q4.