Here at Ember Television, a challenge we face with clients is the demand for the Return of Investment (ROI) on video marketing strategies. To be blunt, how is investing in video going to increase their bottom line?
It is a question that marketers regularly attempt to explain, with varying degrees of success. A common view is that as brands live in the digital space, the link between a customer seeing an advert for a product and choosing to spend their money on it no longer exists. Instead, it's about nuanced factors such as how users engage with brands online. This has led to a plethora of measurement strategies, with various metrics and detailed analytics. In this example, Susan Gunelius describes marketing as having at least four other metrics including return on impression, opportunity and objectives. If the bottom line is all you're tracking, she writes, "then you need to catch up to the 21st century because you're missing a big part of the picture."
Whilst this may be fine for marketers to say to each other, telling clients that they need to catch up and get with the times isn't a positive message, particularly in the start-up and SME sector, or in businesses with older decision makers that aren't savvy digital natives. It doesn't matter how it's achieved but with tight marketing budgets, these players need to see online video as a commercially viable option.
Video marketing can benefit organisations working in a diverse range of settings, and this study by CopyPress shows that marketers believe video creates the best ROI in content marketing strategies behind feature articles. So how can we tackle the question of ROI without offering an unsatisfactory answer that sounds like a politician trying to justify closing down the local youth centre?
In response to this debate, Ember Television has commissioned a group of postgraduates at the University of Warwick to research into the link between ROI and online video marketing. The conclusions will be reported back next week. We're not expecting the answer to be as definitive as 42, in the style of the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything. However, it will hopefully provide a useful contribution to a debate that is by no means over. Watch this space.