It’s Time For Marketers To Lean In To Interactive Video

It’s Time For Marketers To Lean In To Interactive Video

Interesting Not Interesting Share Tweet Gone are the days in which marketers struggled to find their target audience online. Google, Facebook, YouTube and their kind have seen to that – although some very influential marketers, including Keith Weed of Unilever and Marc Pritchard from P&G, have understandably sought to address the trust issues by which the digital media marketplace is beset. As has always been the case, the key to achieving cut-through in a cluttered environment – whether in marketing, the broader business context, the arts or society at large – is to say something original and deliver it in a fresh and engaging way. People simply don’t have time for it. Those that do stick around to the end and want to act on what they’ve watched are often expected to navigate through very convoluted user journeys before their ordeal is over. We believe that telling better stories in online content increasingly requires the adoption of new technology and correspondingly innovative creative thinking. Interactive video is all about making video work harder, either by boosting viewer engagement, educating audiences or maximizing commercial impact. These are some of the things you can do: Hotspots and overlays – visual calls-to-action that stick to moving people or objects and introduce layers of new content when tapped Video branching – viewer-selected options that give your audience a choice of narrative paths through your content Multi-stream playback – synchronises multiple video layers and enables viewers to switch between them seamlessly, in real time Interactive 360º – by adding hotspots, overlays and branching, you can ensure viewers actually get something out of 360 rather than the usual passive feeling Our experience teaches us that interactive video typically delivers 3.5x higher engagement than ordinary video because it creates a tangible link between the viewer and actual things in the video that they’re engaging with. 67% of all interactive video viewers do so, on average three times, and that number is growing fast. If marketers really are concerned about telling better stories and not getting left behind, they should take note.

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Gone are the days in which marketers struggled to find their target audience online. Google, Facebook, YouTube and their kind have seen to that – although some very influential marketers, including Keith Weed of Unilever and Marc Pritchard from P&G, have understandably sought to address the trust issues by which the digital media marketplace is beset.

An equally tricky challenge lies in getting audiences to engage with video content, absorb its purpose, watch to the end – and actually take positive action.

As has always been the case, the key to achieving cut-through in a cluttered environment – whether in marketing, the broader business context, the arts or society at large – is to say something original and deliver it in a fresh and engaging way. In advertising, it’s been vogueish for some time now to talk gravely about the importance of ‘storytelling’. And rightly so.

But is that enough any more? A huge proportion of the cost sunk into online video production and distribution, as with all advertising, is ultimately wasted (not to speak of the blood, sweat and tears). People simply don’t have time for it. Despite the amount of time we spend glued to our mobile devices, there are other things in life to concern us.

And of course, a lot of it is not very good. You might say that marketers’ movies are frequently playing to empty theatres or theatres in which the audience up sticks and leave after the first scene.

Those that do stick around to the end and want to act on what they’ve watched are often expected to navigate through very convoluted user journeys before their ordeal is over. It’s no surprise that average conversion rates are so microscopic. Many simply throw in the towel and move on to the next shiny thing vying for their attention. And those little films of dachshunds dressed as Darth Vader are strangely watchable.

We believe that telling better stories in online content increasingly requires the adoption of new technology and correspondingly innovative creative thinking.

It’s predicted that one in three brands will deploy interactive video in their marketing campaigns this year – up from in five in 2017. This can only be attributed to an increasing audience demand for better, more…

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