People Like Cheese: Why video viewers watch, share, and complete original video
There are a few things we know about online video. We know that people are watching (42.6B videos last month)* and we know that our clients are spending ($5.7B by 2014).** But, the world of original web video can sometimes feel like a mad science. All of us--content creators, agencies, marketers--are trying to figure out what the formula for success is to engage with our audiences.
Over the past few months, we at AOL Video have teamed up with comScore ARS to better understand what drives people to watch original video, as opposed to UGC or repurposed TV content. And, once they click, we wanted to know what kept them engaged and what made them share with their friends.
Here’s what we did:
- We looked at 1000 of our own videos in three categories: fashion/style, entertainment, and lifestyle.
- Evaluated the viewership metrics (views, shares, completes) and the production elements for each video, including inclusion of music, the appearance of a notable celebrity or the length of video.
- Identified patterns among the highest performing videos.
- We then worked with comScore to do a combination of stated intent/behavioral analysis and interest trace, which gave us a frame-by-frame look at how engaged our audience was throughout the video.
And here’s a brief look at what we found. You can download the full findings here.
- Celebs drive video shares: Across all video types, the inclusion of a notable celebrity made videos 4x - 7x more likely to be shared.
- The right topic is engaging beyond the two-minute mark: Celebrity news and music performances could be more than two minutes and still retain high completion rates
- Recipes retain attention: Engagement with recipe videos increases steadily throughout the video, with the highest point of engagement at the end (even when the video is seven minutes long!)
- Branded content doesn’t drive tune out: Viewers stayed engaged through videos with brand integrations. In fact, the top two most-engaging videos we tested were branded videos!
* comScore Video Metrix Release, October 2011
**eMarketer, “Will Online Video Ads Deliver This Year?” December 2011
Keywords: aol video