6 Best Practices For Monetizing Mobile Video

Video viewing on mobile devices is exploding.  Smartphones are becoming the prevalent channel to discover content and explore products before purchasing  As a result, a growing percentage of ad budgets are being directed toward mobile video ads.

According to the IAB, advertisers are spending more than $10 million annually on digital video on average, representing an 85% increase from two years ago. 

Revenues from mobile video ads are expected to grow from $3.54 billion in 2015 to $13.3 billion in 2020, a 30% compound annual growth rate (CAGR), according to PwC's annual Global Entertainment and Media Outlook report. 

Still, there are still several challenges to successfully creating, delivering and measuring the performance of mobile video ads. Here are six best practices that can help mobile publishers monetize mobile video more effectively:

Sell Audiences, Not Real Estate – Publishers are taking control of their data and investing in understanding their users to provide buyers with audience buying at scale, across screens, with packages based on specific audiences’ characteristics, tastes and preferences.

A publisher’s own first-party data combined with exchange data and data management platforms (DMPs), such as Nielsen, provide a high level of granularity that can be used for more precise targeted advertising.

Optimize Around Best Performing Ad Units – The battle among mobile ad sizes and types continues along with the birth of nonconventional ad formats.  The best strategy is to experiment – try out different ad formats, sizes and placements on your mobile property. Then all that’s left if to track and measure results for each one thus identifying the best fit for your environment and user base.

With so many different types of ad units available, it can take some time until you find the perfect mix of mobile ad units for your audiences and platforms, but it will surely be worth the investment.

Measure and Track Viewability – Advertisers are looking to buy inventory that’s measurable, and will have greater confidence paying for mobile video ads that are actually seen. Some buyers may actually turn inventory down if it does not offer viewability measurement.

There are different viewability standards in the market proposed by Facebook, MRC (Media Rating Council) and IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau), and there is some debate over the minimum number of seconds for view time, but one thing is for certain - measuring viewability is bringing more trust and accountability to measurements of mobile video effectiveness and are becoming the norm.

Invest in Quality Delivery – What publisher wants users complaining that a favorite video or app crashed because of a mobile ad?  Providing a seamless experience for users is key for any mobile publisher monetizing via ads. There are several advanced tools in the market today which provide smooth, reliable, guaranteed video ad delivery across multiple screens, players, formats and environments that will be sure to sustain a positive user experience.

Explore Performance-Based Pricing Models – Buyers that are used to buying TV ads still have difficulties quantifying the value of online video. Providing access to performance-based pricing models that guarantee a high level of engagement will help build trust with buyers and shift more dollars into the mobile video environment.

Pricing models such as cost per completed view (CPCV) provides a more stringent measurement of video ad effectiveness. CPCV is the (higher) price paid by an advertiser to the publisher once a video has been seen viewed all the way through the end which provides the advertiser with assurances that the ad had a higher level of impact.

Leverage Mobile – The mobile environment is different than its desktop counterpart. Enabling ad units that are tailored for the mobile experience will provide a more enticing, natural, and less disruptive user experience and is more likely to command higher engagement (and thus justify higher prices). 

Ad units that take advantage of inherent mobile phone capabilities have higher impact including vertical video and various rich media ads that include support for swipe, shake and tilt. 

Video advertising enables brands to build stronger connections with consumers. By leveraging first-party data to create audience packages, embracing the industry’s keenness for more trustworthy viewability and performance measurements and ensuring a seamless user experience, video will become an even more lucrative ad unit for publishers.  


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