Online Video Advertising Vs. Online Video Marketing

The terms online video advertising and online video marketing, like the broader terms advertising and marketing themselves, are often used interchangeably. According to online dictionary, advertising and marketing are defined as follows: 

Advertising: The action of calling something to the attention of the public especially by paid announcements. 

Marketing: An aggregate of functions involved in moving goods from producer to consumer. 

Online video advertising approaches the goal of increasing sales in a more direct fashion, announcing a product, service or special offer and encouraging the consumer to act on the announcement in the form of a direct inquiry or immediate purchase. Just as advertising involves paying for access to a large, targeted audience, online video advertising allows brands and products to drill down even further and reach an even more targeted audience, sorted by interests. Often, the same verticals established for an online video ad campaign can be carried through to online video marketing.

By contrast, online video marketing tends to be concerned with elements like brand lift, product awareness and engagement. In addition to ultimately leading consumers toward purchasing decisions, the call to action associated with video marketing is typically presented in a less aggressive and longer-lasting way. 

Reach and Frequency

Video advertising, being a paid medium, will offer whatever reach and frequency a brand or business' budget can afford. Typical video ad units include pre-roll, mid-roll, post-roll, repurposed TV ads, video banner ads and more. These ads can reach millions of viewers but often lack either the creative or share functionality to further propel the message once the advertising budget has run out. Often, the creative is not developed with the intention of the video being shared (not being particularly funny, unexpected, shocking or evoking emotion), and the units are often displayed without the social media sharing buttons requisite in video marketing campaigns.

Video marketing, on the other hand, includes branded entertainment, viral videos, informational and educational videos, and relies on viewers to share video content whereby the brand message and call to action are passed voluntarily from one potential consumer to another. As with the broader definition of marketing, this approach typically involves an aggregate of functions including creative, production, advertising, social media and PR all working together to promote a campaign that will eventually take on a life of its own beyond any paid components.

The role of creative and production

Online video creative and production are important in giving viewers content that is more shareable,  while creative and production in advertising serve to make the message more memorable and in many cases, more tolerable. All are important, but in video marketing, shareability is essential.

The role of advertising in online video marketing

Video advertising serves to give the campaign a jumpstart and is valuable in hitting a targeted demographic at the start. The key is including share functionality so that viewers and fans can easily pass the message along.

The role of social media in online video marketing

Video marketing strategy, social networking, bookmarking, discussion boards and contests all play an important role in perpetuating the flow and direction of the marketing campaign. This is where adjustments can be made.

The role of PR in online video marketing

Traditional PR approaches are invaluable in seeding video marketing campaigns and include blog and publication outreach and news releases.

Just as TV advertising seldom operates independently of overall marketing strategy, video advertising should, wherever possible, be integrated into the overall online video marketing strategy, which should be integrated with the overall marketing strategy.
11 comments about "Online Video Advertising Vs. Online Video Marketing".
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  1. Terry Verhaar from Twenty Ten Media, March 1, 2011 at 5:16 p.m.

    Actually, it is a little annoying that the concepts of marketing and advertising are so often interchanged, since they are completely different. To more clearly understand what "marketing" is, go back to the 4 p's; product, place, price and promotion. Marketing encompasses the process all the way back to product design - meeting the customers wants and needs, not through some sort of persuasion or information, but from actually creating a product that addresses these things. From there, marketing also covers pricing and distribution. Advertising really only deals with the promotion piece. And, often when people do make a distinction between marketing and advertising, they describe as marketing what would be better termed "branding." But even branding activity often falls more into the category of advertising than it does the larger picture of marketing.

  2. Lance Trachtenberg, March 1, 2011 at 8:04 p.m.

    Solid post. Just featured it on our Facebook wall.

  3. Jimm Fox from One Market Media, March 1, 2011 at 11:08 p.m.

    David, I agree that there is often confusion over the difference between advertising and marketing - both online and off, but I don't agree that sharability is essential in online video marketing in the same way that memorability is in traditional advertising.

    If your advertising is not memorable it has failed, no question. But your online video marketing doesn't have to be sharable to succeed. Video testimonials, product demo's and event videos (as an example) are all forms of online video marketing but they are all are built with specific and different marketing objectives. Being sharable may be desirable but it isn't necessarily the primary objective, and it isn't always essential.

  4. Darcie King from E Video Productions, March 2, 2011 at 7:11 a.m.

    I agree with Jimm - the article is excellent, but I don't believe sharability is always a key to success in video marketing. There is a time & place for sharability -that is true. But if the main reason for video marketing is to increase brand awareness, and engagement, it doesn't necessarily have to be shared to achieve those results. An educational video might help inform me of the ins & outs of a specific company that I am considering and my help me decide to go with that company over their competition. It worked, but I have no need to share it with others.

    Otherwise, great article. I intend on sharing it with all of my social networks! Too many people think advertising & marketing are one in the same & don't quite understand what our "video marketing solutions" are all about. :) Thanks!

  5. Darcie King from E Video Productions, March 2, 2011 at 7:12 a.m.

    FYI - your twitter link above doesn't work.

  6. Renny Fidlon from Poptent, March 2, 2011 at 10:55 a.m.

    The premise of the article seems incorrect. I think Terry had it right. Advertising is not just getting consumers to act. Branding is a part of advertising and customer engagement is part of branding. That is the point of sharing. Marketing encompasses so much more than what you are describing as either online video advertising or online video marketing. You can't talk about marketing and narrow it to one channel and one medium of promotion. The concept of online video marketing itself just doesn't make sense.

  7. Scott Broomfield from Veeple, Inc., March 2, 2011 at 11:59 a.m.

    Terry has it about right. Marketing consists, among other things including strategy, the 4 Ps. Therefore, video advertising addresses the P of promotion.

    Now, here is another conceptual way to think about it: video advertising is about monetizing video directly, where video marketing is about using video to monetize a business, an idea, a cause, etc.

  8. David Murdico from Supercool Creative, March 2, 2011 at 1:41 p.m.

    Thanks for all the good points. Darcie, thanks for the Twitter alert, I've let MediaPost know.

  9. Tim Avirett from AvirettCreativeEnterprises, March 2, 2011 at 4:43 p.m.

    The concepts of marketing & advertising do overlap but aren't interchangeable. I think David does a good job of differentiating the goals of marketing vs. advertising. One other difference is cost. Online video advertising costs can add up. Online video marketing can b done on a much smaller budget. Jimm u listed some good examples of online video marketing where sharing may not be essential, but in general the Holy Grail of online video marketing is to produce a video that spreads virally. Sharing & social networking r essential components of that strategy.

  10. Jimm Fox from One Market Media, March 2, 2011 at 9:58 p.m.

    This is a great discussion because I believe it reveals two large misconceptions. The first being that marketing and advertising are the same thing. The second being that viral (sharable) video and marketing video are the same thing.

    Advertising is a subset of Marketing. Viral Video is a subset of Marketing Video. Yes, it would be wonderful if the video you created was so powerful that everyone wanted to share it with the rest of the world. 'Viral' however, is a specific marketing objective, not a generic desire. 95% of BtoB marketing videos are not designed to be viral, nor should they be. has created over 1,000 marketing videos. None of them are 'viral' although a few of them are quite popular.

    You can't add 'viral' as an afterthought or a tertiary objective to the creation of a video. Successful viral videos are purpose-built to be viral - shocking, outrageous, funny... whatever. Something so clever that people want to share it with the world... and calling a video 'viral' doesn't make it viral (or sharable). An amazing concept, a million plus views and lot's of notoriety - that's viral, and that's also really, really hard to do well. Too often 'viral' is a promise that videos never live up to. And as for 'sharable', aside from adding an embed code to the video player it's impossible to even begin to define what 'sharable' means.

    I'm often asked by clients if the videos I am creating for them can also have a 'viral component' like that is something you can just add in. You can't.

    I absolutely agree that being 'viral' or 'sharable' is an important marketing objective but it's not necessarily the right one or the only one.

  11. Yaniv Axen, March 4, 2011 at 10:35 a.m.

    Not all sharable video is automatically 'viral'.
    Same as not every cough is a virus outbreak.
    Different types of videos answer different needs in the buying funnel.
    Starting from awareness and down to the last minute before adding to the cart.
    There are how-to videos, product showcase videos, user generated videos, brand awareness and so on. Each plays a different role.


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