The web is not like television. It also not TV with Internet access. The web is more than the sum of its parts. Unlike the television, the web is not merely a tool to access videos. It’s a place; a virtual place where a personalized video viewing experience happens along with conversations, social sharing, and content creation.
Therefore, what the web expects from advertising and vice versa should also be different from what we expect from TV.
Smaller audience, greater engagement.
Video advertising on the web offers greater targeting than TV commercials. The sophistication of behavioral targeting allows marketers to target their videos to a niche market. From branded videos posted on Facebook to commercials on video services like Hulu, the web ensures that they reach the people that find these messages relevant. Often that means fewer eyes, but it also means greater engagement and even conversions.
Bigger ideas, smaller production values.
TV demands great production value and big spending when it comes to commercials. The web, on the other hand, expects more original ideas and less bling. This means that online video advertising gives an equal playing field to big and small brands alike. Take the Old Spice campaign, for instance; the dying brand was hyperblasted into advertising glory after their Old Spice videos went viral. There were no crazy stunts and no high production costs, just a brilliant idea. The web is a great place to test drive out-of-the-box ideas that may be too risky for television audiences. Often the best web videos make great commercials, but not always the other way around.
Less broadcasting, more conversing.
Unlike the television, the web lets you talk to your audience. There can be a back-and-forth between a brand and its audience. Videos do not exist simply to be watched; they can be talked about, passed along to friends, and even become part of the news. Viewers can and will tell you what they like or dislike about an ad, viral video, or even a TV commercial. Brands can learn, adjust, and repackage their video messages according to the moods, attitudes, and social landscapes that their audiences are in.
While the web has a lot to offer when it comes to video advertising, it needs to be qualified that it is not a replacement for a TV campaign. TV has its place when it comes to reaching a broad audience, establishing a brand image, and simply making a statement. Brands should consider web video advertising concurrently with TV campaigns to reinforce their message and image successfully.