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7 Ways to Engage Your Customers with Mobile Video Ads

Written by: Laurie Cutts, Director of Marketing

It’s no secret that people love watching videos on their mobile devices. Mobile video views grew 300% in 2012 over the previous year and advertisers are seizing the opportunity. Budgets spent on mobile video advertising are forecast to grow fivefold in the U.S. alone from nearly $518 million in 2013 to $2,685 million in 2017.

With its combination of full-screen immersion, finely tuned targeting and the ability for people to take immediate action, mobile video ads have become one of the most effective advertising mediums ever. A Nanigans study revealed that Facebook’s mobile Page post video ads achieved a 77% video play rate and a 2x higher CTR than desktop video ads.

There’s no question that mobile video advertising has a bright future. Here are seven best practices to consider when planning your campaigns.

1. Create ads specifically for mobile.

Borrowing content from other media and reusing it for mobile ads doesn’t perform as well as content specifically designed for mobile. People aren’t inspired to watch commercials they’ve already seen on TV on their mobile devices. It’s important for advertisers to focus on quality and original content. As mobile content consumption continues to outpace other channels, more video content will be produced keeping mobile in mind, which will help to make mobile ads even more effective.

2. Consider the device and environment.

When planning your mobile video ad campaign it’s important to consider that video consumption habits vary by device. Tablets commonly see heavy usage on the weekends driven by TV shows, movies, and live sports. People are more likely to use their tablets at home on a WiFi connection. By comparison, people are using their smartphones when they are out and about. They are typically more comfortable consuming shorter segments of content such as news, weather and sports clips.

3. Ensure your ads are relevant.

They key to successful mobile video advertising is targeting. Casting too wide a net can diminish your ROI in the long run. It’s important for advertisers to focus in on a specific audience and determine what types of ad content will appeal to them the most. By taking into consideration a person’s known demographics interests, and browsing behaviors, advertisers are more likely to elicit a more engaged response from consumers. Mobile users are known to have shorter attention spans so video ads that tell a story and deliver meaningful content produce a stronger emotional response.

4. Make your ads location aware.

Mobile consumers are becoming increasingly comfortable with shopping and spending on their mobile devices. To drive purchases, leverage the user’s location to direct them to the nearest store and offer items that are relevant for where they live or work. Advertisers often embed Store Locator/View Map actions within their mobile video ad experiences to give shoppers the option of purchasing online or going to the store.

5. Fish where the fish are.

To engage your audience, you need to be where they are. Facebook, for example, revealed that 40% of its users’ time is spent in News Feed which is where they display their mobile ad units. By inserting a relevant message adjacent to the content people care about, advertisers can more easily attract eyeballs and increase notoriety of their call to action.

6. Include a clear call to action.

Don’t forget that it’s not just about getting your audience to watch the video – effective engagement inspires viewers to take action. By adding a call to action within the video, you can boost conversions by driving customers to sign up for an email list, buy a product or post on Facebook while they are emotionally invested.

7. Track metrics that matter.

When measuring the effectiveness of your mobile video ads some metrics to consider are video plays, play time, completions, and conversions.

Video plays
- Counts the number of initiated video plays. This is counted any time the video player loads the video.

Play time – Video play time metric refers to the time from when the video started playing to the time the video stopped playing.

Completions – The number of video plays that have been played from the beginning to the end.

Conversions – Measures whether the ad resulted in a conversion such as a registration or a purchase.

Mobile video advertising is clearly an ideal medium for brands looking to interact with mobile users. By understanding how to effectively engage consumers, advertisers can tap the potential of mobile video to drive awareness and most importantly conversions.

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