Exponential http://exponential.com/ Mon, 18 Dec 2017 09:31:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.21 Exponential Receives New Accreditation by the Trustworthy Accountability Group http://exponential.com/2017/11/01/exponential-receives-new-accreditation-by-the-trustworthy-accountability-group/ http://exponential.com/2017/11/01/exponential-receives-new-accreditation-by-the-trustworthy-accountability-group/#comments Wed, 01 Nov 2017 23:06:50 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=26083 Recognized for combatting ad fraud with Certified Against Fraud Seal EMERYVILLE, Calif - (November 1, 2017) – Exponential Interactive, one of the largest digital advertising companies globally reaching over 700 million users monthly, has been accredited by the Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) with its “Certified Against Fraud” Seal. The accreditation follows TAG’s ‘Certified Against Fraud’read more

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Recognized for combatting ad fraud with Certified Against Fraud Seal

EMERYVILLE, Calif - (November 1, 2017)Exponential Interactive, one of the largest digital advertising companies globally reaching over 700 million users monthly, has been accredited by the Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) with its “Certified Against Fraud” Seal. The accreditation follows TAG’s ‘Certified Against Fraud’ Guidelines, and was achieved via an audit by an independent third party approved by TAG, BPA Worldwide. As required by the TAG guidelines, Exponential also works in compliance with The Media Rating Council’s Invalid Traffic Detection and Filtration Guidelines (MRC IVT Guidelines).

To achieve compliance, Exponential has demonstrated its methodology is in accordance with TAG’s guidelines for its certification against fraud. Exponential employs multiple tools and controls to protect advertisers from invalid traffic, including regularly updated whitelists and blacklists, proprietary activity-based detection checks and manual invalid traffic checks, partner qualification controls for publishers upon being accepted into the network and ongoing process and transaction auditing for publishers. Exponential also employs a thorough compliance process with dedicated compliance and data quality officers and strict processes for handling invalid traffic complaints.

“Exponential is working alongside TAG to combat ad fraud. As an advertising intelligence company, we fully understand and recognize just how important it is to be vigilant about fraud,” said Tim Sleath, VP of product management, Exponential. “The industry is in a new era of digital transparency. It’s vital that companies work to prevent fraud and ensure brand safety. We are proud to play our part in making online advertising a safer, cleaner place and hope other companies follow suit.”

About Exponential

Exponential is a technology-driven advertising company, that enables brands to drive consumer engagement and performance across display, video and mobile.

When you have the right balance of people and technology, amazing things can happen. Exponential uses big data and machine learning to understand consumer interests in real-time, and delivers innovative creative experiences designed to trigger emotions that drive affinity and spend.

For more than 15 years, we have delivered superior advertising products and services that consumers embrace, agencies recommend, brands select, media providers prefer, and our employees are proud of. Exponential was founded in 2001 and has locations in 22 countries. For more information, please visit www.exponential.com.

Media Contact:
Kara O’Donnell for Exponential
kara@kitehillpr.com

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TEN, Exponential Partner For Curated Video Content Ads http://exponential.com/2017/10/26/ten-exponential-partner-for-curated-video-content-ads/ http://exponential.com/2017/10/26/ten-exponential-partner-for-curated-video-content-ads/#comments Thu, 26 Oct 2017 21:21:41 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=25981 Automotive media company TEN and digital advertising company Exponential Interactive are partnering for a new type of video ad that incorporates curated content from TEN. TEN, Exponential Partner For Curated Video Content Ads LAS VEGAS — Automotive media company TEN and digital advertising company Exponential Interactive are partnering for a new type of video adread more

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Automotive media company TEN and digital advertising company Exponential Interactive are partnering for a new type of video ad that incorporates curated content from TEN.

TEN, Exponential Partner For Curated Video Content Ads

LAS VEGAS — Automotive media company TEN and digital advertising company Exponential Interactive are partnering for a new type of video ad that incorporates curated content from TEN.

Auto marketers can use this type of ad for a specific vehicle, including editorial product reviews and awards to showcase the cars’ performance.

To commemorate their relationship, Exponential and TEN: A Discovery Communications Company hosted an event in conjunction with the J.D. Power Automotive Marketing Roundtable. Megan Neal, TEN’s vice president of social media, discussed how auto marketers can apply TEN’s content to improve their ROI and sell cars.

Research shows that consumers are increasingly moving away from shopping for cars in person and are relying more on online reviews and research to make their purchasing decisions. For example, consumers are now visiting less than two dealerships on average before buying a car. According to Nielsen, there is a 15% lift in purchase consideration for new cars after consumers read third-party expert content.

Exponential reaches more than 700 million users monthly. The Video-Driven Experience Content Amplifier will take curated content and insert it into scalable, and interactive ad units. The ads can use a variety of formats including live stream and 360-degree video.

TEN: A Discovery Communications Company, an automotive media company, is among one of the first media partners for Exponential’s new VDX Content Amplifier offering. TEN offers unbiased content from brands like Motor Trend, which has its own YouTube channel with hundreds of videos and over 5 million subscribers. Auto marketers can tout specific awards associated with different makes and models, and provide credible, expert reviews with an advertorial voice.

“The interactive nature of the VDX ads were particularly appealing to us, as it allows our content to be presented in an engaging and dynamic way to readers,” said Jason Rice, senior vice president, media solutions and strategy, at TEN. “Our goal is to provide consumers with expert guidance on cars and we feel this relationship with Exponential allows us to stay true to this goal.”

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Phish “phans” and how data informs marketers http://exponential.com/2017/09/26/phish-phans-and-how-data-informs-marketers/ http://exponential.com/2017/09/26/phish-phans-and-how-data-informs-marketers/#comments Tue, 26 Sep 2017 21:21:16 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=25979 Data is the air that marketers breathe, yet it’s not always clear how to approach it. What data should I be using? How can I make all my data fit together? What types of audiences and segments do I need to reach the right consumers? These are just some of the questions on the mindsread more

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Data is the air that marketers breathe, yet it’s not always clear how to approach it. What data should I be using? How can I make all my data fit together? What types of audiences and segments do I need to reach the right consumers? These are just some of the questions on the minds of marketers.

Phish “phans” and how data informs marketers

Data is practically infinite in this industry, so the challenge is to break it down into usable nuggets.

For example, marketers can better offer some value exchange to their potential customers in the form of personalized messaging in the right contexts by using lifestyle data based on consumers’ passion points and content consumption, thus eliminating ad waste and generating customer loyalty and affinity.

Sounds great, right? But what does that mean? Here’s a case study about fans of the band Phish and how data about them can inform marketers on how to best reach this subset:

The “Baker’s Dozen” tour and event-based data collection

Especially in light of the fact that this past summer,Phish embarked on a historic series of concerts called “Baker’s Dozen,” which included 13 shows at Madison Square Garden, 237 songs (without any repeats) and more than 2,000 minutes of music.
Phish “phans” behavior and preferences during the show series shed an interesting light on the types of insights marketers can uncover from a particular set of people convening around a particular event.

Just like the flavors of each donut passed out on each night of the Baker’s Dozen, Phish phans are truly a unique bunch. To understand this group better, we analyzed anonymous internet users interested in the band during the month of July 2017 and uncovered some expected behaviors and some surprises.

Demographics: Anyone who has waited in the restroom lines at Madison Square Garden knows that the band’s followers tend to skew male, and data confirms that Phish “phans” are about 25% more likely to be male than female. In terms of age, we see the highest lift for interest in Phish from internet users aged 36-40, which sounds about right for those coming into fandom during the height of Phish’s popularity during the mid to late 90s.

Preferences: Our data shows that Phish phans are 17x more likely to be interested in rock music than the average internet user and 13x more interested in jazz.

Geography: With its roots as a band in Vermont and many early shows across New England, it’s also no surprise we see strong interest in the band from folks living in places such as Portland, Maine, Boston, Massachusetts, and their home state of Vermont. But we also see interest in the band from residents of Wisconsin, Colorado, and Nevada.

Lifestyle: What do Phish phans like to buy? Considering many now have children, we see a 14x lift over average for electronics related to children’s learning and education, as well as 13x lift for bikes and skates. Many Phish phans have also been known to be musicians themselves, as evidenced by an 11x lift in guitars and other musical instruments. They also like to shop for art and collectibles as well as flowers and gifts. Finally, we see a 17x lift for home improvement related to the garage and a 13x lift for griddles and grills to cook grilled cheese on the lot, or a feast at home for the family.

Brand preferences: In terms of affinities for specific auto brands, their favorite vehicle to road trip with is Subaru, which is a brand known for its Outback, Forrester and Crosstrek, all vehicles equipped with the versatility and ability to deal with any kind of weather and terrain. This coincides with another interest of camping and hiking, which Phish phans are 15x more likely to do than the average.

Travel: Traveling to family friendly destinations such as Universal Studios in Orlando, FL was also high on the list with a 12x lift. Phish phans also go on excursions, music and arts festivals (27x) international trips to places such as Australia and Iceland (15x and 12x, respectively), and proactively booking snowboarding trips to mountain resorts (23x).

Sports: Sports preferences are also telling. Phish phans prefer MLB teams such as the Washington Nationals (70x, possibly some carry over fandom from the “Wilson” chant for their former catcher Wilson Ramos?) Cincinnati Reds (15x) and Boston Red Sox (11x), along with the rest of the AL East (9x).

Like any other consumer segmentation, taking into account the human element is the key to bringing data to life. By learning more about Phish phans and their preferences, marketers can move beyond the surface level of “music lover” segmentation into microsegments based on their passion points of jazz music, Subaru vehicles, children’s learning tools, adventure travel and New England roots.

This example demonstrates how diving deep into your customer’s profile and interests can help guide smarter and more effective marketing. Knowing who your audience is marks the first step to success in this age of personalization.

Jim Johnson is the vice president of account planning at Exponential Interactive.

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Portrait of a travel-minded consumer http://exponential.com/2017/09/08/portrait-of-a-travel-minded-consumer/ http://exponential.com/2017/09/08/portrait-of-a-travel-minded-consumer/#comments Fri, 08 Sep 2017 19:32:07 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=25030 There is new data that paints a picture of what consumers are doing online in the days and weeks leading up to travel. This is what marketers need to know.

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Portrait of a travel-minded consumer

There is new data that paints a picture of what consumers are doing online in the days and weeks leading up to travel. This is what marketers need to know.

When consumers travel, prepping isn’t only about best airfare or the cheapest hotel – not even for those who are traveling for work. Of course, marketers know that travelers will be looking into restaurant and hotel information, but the new data out from Exponential, focused on travelers to Las Vegas, breaks that information out into time frames that could give marketers a great chance to engage and convert those consumers.

For example, people who are traveling for extended stays in an area begin packing for their trips about 90 days before leaving; during this time frame, the consumer is most interested in package deals – so hotel/airfare combinations, or meal packages are likely of interest. Then, at about 60 days out, consumers will begin looking at events – concerts, local interest hangouts, sporting events. This is the point when business people, especially, begin booking hotel stays.

“Travelers are some of the most valuable audiences for marketers. To help better understand their decision making, we explored behaviors that travelers exhibit before arriving at a popular destination such as Las Vegas. We found four types of visitor, each with a unique sequential pattern, that serve as a blueprint for marketers looking to reach these traveler segments,” said Bryan Melmed, Vice President, Insights, Exponential.

For restaurants and comedy clubs, targeting consumers who are about 45-30 days out of a trip is important because this is when traveling consumers begin making their actual decisions about entertainment and dining for the trip. Then, for retailers, about 15 days pre-travel, consumers will begin looking at local shops to plan their shopping visits.

While this information doesn’t guarantee that marketers will engage traveling consumers, knowing what these customers are looking for prior to leaving for their destination can go a long way toward creating a sense of engagement.

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Exponential’s Jim Johnson Featured on Advertising Week on How To Persuade a Generation of Marketing Skeptics http://exponential.com/2017/08/17/exponentials-jim-johnson-featured-on-advertising-week-on-how-to-persuade-a-generation-of-marketing-skeptics/ http://exponential.com/2017/08/17/exponentials-jim-johnson-featured-on-advertising-week-on-how-to-persuade-a-generation-of-marketing-skeptics/#comments Thu, 17 Aug 2017 18:50:32 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=24653 For marketers, the challenge remains the same; capture attention and demonstrate that your message, product or service is worth it. What’s changed are the rules around how to engage, maintain loyalty, and ultimately provide some value in exchange for that engagement and loyalty.

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Gen Z & Brand Loyalty: How to Persuade a Generation of Marketing Skeptics

Generation “Z” comprises of people born generally between 1995 up to 2010. Although there is little agreement on that specific date range (or even the term Gen Z itself), the one thing that’s certain is that these individuals are unlike any other demographic grouping we’ve seen in history. Most obviously, they’ve all grown up within a technologically driven world where any information is a quick search away, lending itself to instant gratification. They are also the most ethnically diverse cohort in the U.S., with an estimate from Frank N. Magid and Associates putting the makeup at 55% Caucasian, 24% Hispanic, 14% African American, 4% Asian, and 4% multi-racial.

For marketers, the challenge remains the same; capture attention and demonstrate that your message, product or service is worth it. What’s changed are the rules around how to engage, maintain loyalty, and ultimately provide some value in exchange for that engagement and loyalty. How can this be done with this new emerging group? I outline some ideas below. Keep in mind that the COPPA Act restricts data collection and marketing activities aimed at children under the age of 13, so all of the recommendations here assume that this has been taken into consideration.

1. Mobile + Location
While millennials are often mentioned as a mobile-first generation, it’s really Gen Z who grew up not knowing what a busy signal meant. All they’ve known is texting, messaging and instant access to the world in the palm of their hands. It’s all a double-edged sword for marketers, really. On one hand, you have access to a group of people who are always connected in some way, either via apps, mobile web, messaging services or even streaming audio. On the other, you have a group of people who have become accustomed to tuning out marketing messages regardless of device. The trick is to use their mobility as the key to strike up a conversation, offering some value exchange in return. Location based mobile providers offer insight into the places they visit, how often they frequent them, and how long they stay there. This context is hugely powerful in understanding the physical world Gen Z lives in, and marketers can take advantage by encouraging them to return to those places they frequent, inviting their friends along, or sharing their experiences in exchange for monetary or loyalty based incentives. Even in the absence of any incentive, knowing that this generation prefers sharing experiences over consuming goods (similar to millennials), a simple reminder of their good times can be enough for them to return in the future (think of Facebook’s “On This Day” meets retargeting).

2. Gen Z is More Fiscally Conserative: Marketers should respect their experiences
Although they are young, they are not without life experience. Gen Z grew up with 9/11 and the subsequent “War on Terror” altering their sense of security and safety at home. The Great Recession of 2007-2009 had them watching their parents struggle through the housing crisis and its economic aftermath, that in many ways is still felt today. This manifests itself in how they view money and spending. Lincoln Financial Group goes so far as to compare them to the “Greatest Generation” that grew up during the Great Depression, further mentioning that their top three priorities are getting a job, finishing college, and safeguarding their money. Without delving deeply into the impacts of lower consumer spending on deflation, it’s clear that the economic stakes are high and that marketers have their work cut out for them in convincing this group to part with their hard earned money. In recognizing their life experience, we also need to consider their consumer experience. Understanding these key factors is vital to recognizing the need to add value to a product or service wherever possible, which brings me to my next point…

3. Aim for 1:1 Connections
Omnichannel Marketing promises to deliver a consistent and seamless consumer experience at every touchpoint, regardless of channel and device. While there are some technical hurdles for marketers to overcome in order to correctly identify a consumer for a true 1:1 conversation, one way to clear these hurdles without getting bogged down in cookie or device matching is to segment consumers based on need. At each stage of the purchase decision making process, a consumer will need additional information about your product or service, and will expect to find it via your website, social media pages or search. Customer journey mapping will help you better understand the signals your customers are sending you at each stage, enabling you to meet them halfway with pull marketing tactics such as content that provides answers to FAQ’s about your products and services, or customer testimonials to highlight your top product and service benefits. Since Gen Z are digital natives with their smartphone as the centerpiece of communication, offering this information in a mobile friendly way is a must (ie. social media channels, mobile video, or opt-in SMS and email marketing vs. traditional whitepaper downloads).

4. Think Creatively and Sparingly
Gen Z, not unlike every generation of kids and teenagers before them, tend to view the world as the “grass is greener somewhere else”. Media consumption offers an escape from the everyday drudgery of suburbia, school and siblings, and advertising should do the same. Millward Brown’s 2017 AdReaction study not only mentions the fact that Gen Z is “significantly more likely to skip ads, (is) turned off by invasive, interruptive formats, (and is) highly discriminating and more averse to advertising in general.” They also note that they “prefer short content and the opportunity to interact with ads” as well as recommending that “the best ways to engage them are through music and humor.” Interestingly, the same study found that they are more open to ads appearing in traditional media formats over digital, likely due to their status as “digital natives” and the tendency for some less tasteful publishers and marketers to overload the digital ecosystem with poor user experiences in favor of profits.

5. Have Something to Say
Marketers may understandably be a bit gun-shy about making social commentary or borrowing from current events in the face of increasing consumer backlash across social media channels (think Pepsi and its Kendall Jenner spot), but Gen Z is especially attuned to social causes and the brands that support them. After all, they may be young, but they’ve already lived through some major historical moments, ones that will shape how they purchase and consume products and services over their next 40 to 50 years. The brands that respect and honor the world they live in will be the ones who ultimately gain their loyalty.

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Exponential’s Nicole Liebmann featured on Malaysia’s Business Radio BFM 89.9FM http://exponential.com/2017/07/11/exponentials-nicole-liebmann-featured-on-malaysias-business-radio-bfm-89-9fm/ http://exponential.com/2017/07/11/exponentials-nicole-liebmann-featured-on-malaysias-business-radio-bfm-89-9fm/#comments Tue, 11 Jul 2017 08:09:18 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=23900 Nicole Liebmann, Head of Mobile for APAC and South Africa at Exponential is responsible for leading the revenue and operations for the company’s mobile solutions. Nicole shares four mobile campaigns by Exponential as case studies on the new way of mobile engagement.

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New Way of Mobile Engagement

Nicole Liebmann, Head of Mobile for APAC and South Africa at Exponential is responsible for leading the revenue and operations for the company’s mobile solutions. Nicole shares four mobile campaigns by Exponential as case studies on the new way of mobile engagement.

 

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One on One: Bryan Melmed on a Better, More Relevant Ad Experience http://exponential.com/2017/07/07/one-on-one-bryan-melmed-on-a-better-more-relevant-ad-experience/ http://exponential.com/2017/07/07/one-on-one-bryan-melmed-on-a-better-more-relevant-ad-experience/#comments Fri, 07 Jul 2017 21:17:35 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=25977 Exponential is a “digital advertising experience provider” across desktop, laptop, and mobile, with a global footprint, says Bryan Melmed, VP of Insights Services. In this podcast, Melmed shares forceful, sometimes controversial views on big data, cross-device targeting, and programmatic — and breaks down human behavior into three intriguing layers. One on One: Bryan Melmed onread more

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Exponential is a “digital advertising experience provider” across desktop, laptop, and mobile, with a global footprint, says Bryan Melmed, VP of Insights Services. In this podcast, Melmed shares forceful, sometimes controversial views on big data, cross-device targeting, and programmatic — and breaks down human behavior into three intriguing layers.

One on One: Bryan Melmed on a Better, More Relevant Ad Experience

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Exponential’s Director of Creative Strategy Jason Bercovici published in Advertising Week on Short-Form vs. Long-Form Video http://exponential.com/2017/07/05/exponentials-director-of-creative-strategy-jason-bercovici-published-in-advertising-week-on-short-form-vs-long-form-video/ http://exponential.com/2017/07/05/exponentials-director-of-creative-strategy-jason-bercovici-published-in-advertising-week-on-short-form-vs-long-form-video/#comments Wed, 05 Jul 2017 19:12:06 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=23702 For marketers, deciding between short-form and long-form video has been challenging. On one hand, consumers have short attention spans, and on the other, studies have shown that longer video can perform better. Both short and long formats have value. When deciding between the two, marketers should first consider the goal of the campaign.

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Short-Form vs Long-Form Video: The Answer is Sometimes Both

For marketers, deciding between short-form and long-form video has been challenging. On one hand, consumers have short attention spans, and on the other, studies have shown that longer video can perform better. Both short and long formats have value. When deciding between the two, marketers should first consider the goal of the campaign.

Goals for video campaigns can vary from upper funnel brand discovery to lower funnel clicks. Determining performance on marketing-based goals can be a bit complicated to pin down. So, advertisers often look at video completions and clickthroughs when measuring video campaign effectiveness.

Clickthroughs are supposed to represent interested people who visit a site or social pages and then ingest more information about offerings. If site perusal is your goal, short video is best. Not only do short videos offer more scale, but there’s an inverse relationship between clickthroughs and longer viewing. Why produce a long video when you want people to click away rather than watch?

The most popular metric for video ads is completion rate. In theory, completions represent people who attentively watch your entire video. But confirming viewers’ attention is complicated. One important variable to consider when measuring attention is whether the viewer can skip the video. Standard 15 and 30-second, non-skippable pre-roll ads have average completion rates around 70%. But formats like YouTube’s skippable TrueView or Facebook’s easy to scroll past video ads average less than 30%. Are so many more people really paying attention to non-skippable ads? Or are they tuning out while the ads play?

Considering Short-Form Video

When considering the two most popular metrics for video campaigns, short-form seems to be the clear winner. They make more sense for those with clickthrough goals. And most video vendors recommend shorter videos because they perform better on video completions. This is because as video length increases, so does viewer drop-off.

Scale is also a big consideration. Most in-stream ad inventory doesn’t allow for long-form ads. Especially non-skippable inventory, where the completion rates are highest. This is likely a big reason why, even though people have been predicting for years and years that long-form video is the future, the majority of video ads are 30 seconds or shorter.

Look past the completion rate and short-form isn’t the clear choice. With most videos, viewership drops off precipitously in the first several seconds. YouTube introduced 6 second Bumper ads last year to combat this. But it’s hard to tell a story in 6 seconds. This is where long-form video can excel.

Considering Long-Form Video

Long-form video is often touted as a better way to engage consumers, with greater emphasis on entertainment and story. Since people need to opt-in to view long-form content, it’s easy to put it out there, but hard to get it watched. This puts it at a disadvantage compared to non-skippable standard length ads, which on the surface seem to perform better on viewing metrics.

However, this is where goals come into play. What are the goals of the campaign? Is it just to drive clicks and completions? Or are there longer-term ambitions like trying to build brand affinity, which require true viewer attention.

Long-form video can be very effective at capturing attention. Here’s a comparison of similar short and long-form videos from the same major national advertiser. With the standard 30-second commercial, 2/3 of viewers dropped off after 10 seconds and 16% completed the video.

The long-form video was slightly over two and a half minutes long. Here, it took 39 seconds for 2/3 of viewers to drop off and 13% completed the video. The long-form video delivered significantly more attention to more people than the shorter ad.

Using Short and Long-Form Together

A big reason the longer video worked is that the brand was seamlessly integrated into the video. Advertisers are competing with a glut of high quality content that is available on demand. Whether short or long, authentic stories captivate people. Including clumsy brand references and salesy messages detract from authenticity. Savvy content creators know that plastering logos everywhere doesn’t resonate with today’s consumers. If you want people to pay attention to your video then it should look like content and not like a commercial. You can tell people a story in 30 seconds or 3 minutes and they’ll watch both as long as the story is good.

Typically, between 2-6 minutes is the sweet spot for long-form videos. It’s best to choose brevity when possible, including only those elements essential to your story. But regardless of video length, some viewers will drop-off quickly. It’s often recommended to front-load messaging and quickly get your takeaway across before people leave. But this can be difficult to do well and often interrupts the flow of your story. Instead of stuffing brand messaging in the first 5 seconds just make the ad 5 seconds. Otherwise make the first 5 seconds more interesting. This way more people will choose to watch. And then, by focusing on the story, those people will watch longer.

Factoring in viewing drop-off and creating your ad for the people who stay will maximize the value of your long-form video. You can always reach those with short attention spans or take advantage of short-form inventory sources with edited-down versions. A 3-minute video can always be trimmed to a 60-second version for Instagram, a 30-second pre-roll, and a 6-second blast. But that perfect 3-minute cut offers storytelling and engagement opportunities, often with your most interested and valuable consumers, well beyond those of the typical short-form ad.

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Exponential’s Director of Creative Strategy Jason Bercovici featured in Huffington Post on Short-Form vs. Long-Form Video http://exponential.com/2017/07/05/exponentials-director-of-creative-strategy-jason-bercovici-featured-in-huffington-post-on-short-form-vs-long-form-video/ http://exponential.com/2017/07/05/exponentials-director-of-creative-strategy-jason-bercovici-featured-in-huffington-post-on-short-form-vs-long-form-video/#comments Wed, 05 Jul 2017 19:10:09 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=23700 For marketers, deciding between short-form and long-form video has been challenging. On one hand, consumers have short attention spans, and on the other, studies have shown that longer video can perform better. Both short and long formats have value. When deciding between the two, marketers should first consider the goal of the campaign.

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Short-Form vs Long-Form Video: The Answer is Sometimes Both

For marketers, deciding between short-form and long-form video has been challenging. On one hand, consumers have short attention spans, and on the other, studies have shown that longer video can perform better. Both short and long formats have value. When deciding between the two, marketers should first consider the goal of the campaign.

Goals for video campaigns can vary from upper funnel brand discovery to lower funnel clicks. Determining performance on marketing-based goals can be a bit complicated to pin down. So, advertisers often look at video completions and clickthroughs when measuring video campaign effectiveness.

Clickthroughs are supposed to represent interested people who visit a site or social pages and then ingest more information about offerings. If site perusal is your goal, short video is best. Not only do short videos offer more scale, but there’s an inverse relationship between clickthroughs and longer viewing. Why produce a long video when you want people to click away rather than watch?

The most popular metric for video ads is completion rate. In theory, completions represent people who attentively watch your entire video. But confirming viewers’ attention is complicated. One important variable to consider when measuring attention is whether the viewer can skip the video. Standard 15 and 30-second, non-skippable pre-roll ads have average completion rates around 70%. But formats like YouTube’s skippable TrueView or Facebook’s easy to scroll past video ads average less than 30%. Are so many more people really paying attention to non-skippable ads? Or are they tuning out while the ads play?

Considering Short-Form Video

When considering the two most popular metrics for video campaigns, short-form seems to be the clear winner. They make more sense for those with clickthrough goals. And most video vendors recommend shorter videos because they perform better on video completions. This is because as video length increases, so does viewer drop-off.

Scale is also a big consideration. Most in-stream ad inventory doesn’t allow for long-form ads. Especially non-skippable inventory, where the completion rates are highest. This is likely a big reason why, even though people have been predicting for years and years that long-form video is the future, the majority of video ads are 30 seconds or shorter.

Look past the completion rate and short-form isn’t the clear choice. With most videos, viewership drops off precipitously in the first several seconds. YouTube introduced 6 second Bumper ads last year to combat this. But it’s hard to tell a story in 6 seconds. This is where long-form video can excel.

Considering Long-Form Video

Long-form video is often touted as a better way to engage consumers, with greater emphasis on entertainment and story. Since people need to opt-in to view long-form content, it’s easy to put it out there, but hard to get it watched. This puts it at a disadvantage compared to non-skippable standard length ads, which on the surface seem to perform better on viewing metrics.

However, this is where goals come into play. What are the goals of the campaign? Is it just to drive clicks and completions? Or are there longer-term ambitions like trying to build brand affinity, which require true viewer attention.

Long-form video can be very effective at capturing attention. Here’s a comparison of similar short and long-form videos from the same major national advertiser. With the standard 30-second commercial, 2/3 of viewers dropped off after 10 seconds and 16% completed the video.

The long-form video was slightly over two and a half minutes long. Here, it took 39 seconds for 2/3 of viewers to drop off and 13% completed the video. The long-form video delivered significantly more attention to more people than the shorter ad.

Using Short and Long-Form Together

A big reason the longer video worked is that the brand was seamlessly integrated into the video. Advertisers are competing with a glut of high quality content that is available on demand. Whether short or long, authentic stories captivate people. Including clumsy brand references and salesy messages detract from authenticity. Savvy content creators know that plastering logos everywhere doesn’t resonate with today’s consumers. If you want people to pay attention to your video then it should look like content and not like a commercial. You can tell people a story in 30 seconds or 3 minutes and they’ll watch both as long as the story is good.

Typically, between 2-6 minutes is the sweet spot for long-form videos. It’s best to choose brevity when possible, including only those elements essential to your story. But regardless of video length, some viewers will drop-off quickly. It’s often recommended to front-load messaging and quickly get your takeaway across before people leave. But this can be difficult to do well and often interrupts the flow of your story. Instead of stuffing brand messaging in the first 5 seconds just make the ad 5 seconds. Otherwise make the first 5 seconds more interesting. This way more people will choose to watch. And then, by focusing on the story, those people will watch longer.

Factoring in viewing drop-off and creating your ad for the people who stay will maximize the value of your long-form video. You can always reach those with short attention spans or take advantage of short-form inventory sources with edited-down versions. A 3-minute video can always be trimmed to a 60-second version for Instagram, a 30-second pre-roll, and a 6-second blast. But that perfect 3-minute cut offers storytelling and engagement opportunities, often with your most interested and valuable consumers, well beyond those of the typical short-form ad.

The post Exponential’s Director of Creative Strategy Jason Bercovici featured in Huffington Post on Short-Form vs. Long-Form Video appeared first on Exponential.

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Exponential CEO Dilip DaSilva featured in Adotas on Transparency http://exponential.com/2017/06/22/exponential-ceo-dilip-dasilva-featured-in-adotas-on-transparency/ http://exponential.com/2017/06/22/exponential-ceo-dilip-dasilva-featured-in-adotas-on-transparency/#comments Thu, 22 Jun 2017 08:27:46 +0000 http://exponential.com/?p=23210 Recently, Proctor and Gamble called on the media buying and selling industry to get its act together and demanded transparency into the whole supply chain. When I buy Proctor and Gamble’s products, I don’t ask them for transparency into their supply chain. In fact, I buy their products knowing that I will get high quality products at competitive prices because I can choose between many competing brands.

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Is Transparency The Answer To Achieving Accountable And Effective Marketing? The Answer May Surprise You

Recently, Proctor and Gamble called on the media buying and selling industry to get its act together and demanded transparency into the whole supply chain. When I buy Proctor and Gamble’s products, I don’t ask them for transparency into their supply chain. In fact, I buy their products knowing that I will get high quality products at competitive prices because I can choose between many competing brands.

Ad tech is also a competitive space, so why is our industry the only one where customers need supply-chain transparency? I believe the reason is that marketers and their agencies have often chosen to believe that efficiency will drive better results. A focus on efficiency means investing all your marketing through a single partner, like a trading desk or DSP, to reap the benefits of tactics such as execution simplification, deduplication, frequency control, viewability, and cost transparency. The argument for consolidating all spend through a single platform is that by eliminating waste you drive higher ROI and better results. But can focusing too much on efficiency result in less effective marketing?

The tradeoff when focusing on efficiency through consolidating spend via a single platform is that you end up with less competition, slower innovation and complacency. With fewer partners, it is harder to compare partners against each other and keep them accountable.

Agencies and marketers who choose efficiency over competition may have short-term gains, but will eventually regret that decision in the long-term. For example, several years ago, Proctor and Gamble decided to leverage Audience Science as their single platform, yet they recently abandoned the single platform strategy for multiple platforms. Agency holding companies like WPP decided to acquire their own tech stack, but it became challenging to keep up with the rapid pace of innovation from many ad-tech startups . All agency holding companies have used efficiency to rationalize consolidating spend with a reduced set of platforms. This may benefit the agency holding company, trading desk or DSP, and the cost-saving arguments may seem compelling to a marketer, but is it the most effective strategy for consistently driving the best results for a brand?

Competitive Marketing Will Consistently Beat Efficient Marketing

To remain top of mind and gain market-share over competing brands, brands need to constantly innovate. Innovation in ad tech moves quickly and how a partner performs depends on their evolving tech, algorithms, data and people. A partner that is a top performing partner one quarter may fall behind in subsequent quarters and others that may not have performed in the past may develop new algorithms or add new data to improve their performance significantly. And there are always newcomer partners with unique offerings that could drive better results. An agency that leverages the full breadth of competitive partners and startups to create a dynamic, competitive environment for the brands they represent, will consistently drive better results than an agency that focuses on efficiency and restricts their competitive environment.

Achieving A Competitive Marketing Environment

Leveraging partner competition to create a highly effective marketing machine requires creating a competitive environment that is both fair and transparent. By fair, all partners are measured on a level playing field, with a marketer clearly defining their objectives and selecting an attribution vendor that can accurately measure which efforts are directly impacting the brand’s desired end results. The attribution model is paramount. For example, an attribution model that does not align well with desired outcomes means that partners may focus on strategies that appear to drive results, but are not as effective. A common example is last-click attribution, which is notorious for rewarding partners who focus on lower-funnel retargeting strategies over upper-funnel prospecting strategies. Creating a level playing field means all partners have the same setup with regard to leveraging first-party data for optimization and targeting, and all partners are driving both lower-funnel retargeting strategies and upper-funnel prospecting strategies. When some partners are chosen for lower-funnel retargeting strategies, and others for prospecting, it results in an uneven playing field and undermines a key goal of creating a competitive environment.

Competition is further enhanced by providing transparency to partners into how they are performing relative to other partners. Providing all partners a daily or weekly scorecard that compares partners on end result performance along with details on budget, impressions, and other metrics will go a long way towards ensuring all parties are accountable and working as hard as possible for the brand.

In an ideal competitive environment, a marketer leverages four to eight partners and splits the total campaign budget into a test budget and a top-performer budget . The test budget is dedicated to testing all partners with an evenly split budget. The top-performer budget is allocated to one or two of the partners in the test pool that are consistently performing the best. If a test partner does well in a month or quarter, then they can participate in the top partner pool with their total spend incrementally increasing to ensure that they continue to drive similar performance at higher scale. The worst performing test partners should be rotated out and replaced by new partners. It is important to resist the temptation of reducing all spend to one or two top-performing partners. Although this may produce better short-term results, it reduces competition in the long-term, and does not provide a benchmark to constantly keep the top performers accountable and working hard to drive the best results.

I believe that the unusual requirement for supply-chain transparency in our industry is a result of agencies and marketers placing too much emphasis on efficiency. With a reduction in partners, marketers are unsure how to keep their partners accountable and hence, the need for transparency. Yet, does transparency equal accountability? Instead, marketers should singularly focus on driving end results, and can run a far more effective and accountable marketing strategy through leveraging a dynamic, competitive environment. If any partners are inefficient, serving too many impressions or non-viewable impressions to each consumer, or are taking too much margin, their performance will suffer relative to other partners. Competition is the most effective means to keep partners accountable, so why not leverage it to consistently drive the best results?

 

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