How Social Data Can Inform Video Storytelling

Leverage audience intelligence to make smarter business decisions

An estimated 80% of all internet traffic will be video by 2019.

Users are both creating and consuming more video than ever before. The social channels are taking note, with each of the major-player social channels making changes to prioritize video in their feeds. This changing atmosphere provides the opportunity and creates the need for brands to be sharing dynamic video. But social video, like all social endeavors, relies on authenticity for success. And the best way to create branded video with the authenticity that is worthy of engagement and discussion is to listen to your audience.

Brands are drawn to video storytelling because consumers are and this trend is on the rise. According to Nielsen, U.S. consumers watched nearly three hours of video weekly between desktop and mobile in Q2 2017, which is up more than 30 mins from Q2 of the previous year. If that rate of increase holds year over year, consumers should be watching nearly 5 hours of video each week by 2021.

The gigantic user bases of social platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram paired with the channels’ prioritization of video content and an increase in video capabilities have stoked the consumer interest in video. That, in turn, has fueled heightened interest among brands and media companies. As mobile data prices decrease, the ability to view high-quality video from anywhere means that more people are consuming more video.

There are more than 500 million hours of video watched on YouTube each day. With that much video consumption, it can be hard to cut through the noise. Historically video content production has been an expensive and time-consuming process for brands. And, since consumers are demanding more video, brands can’t afford to not deliver.

Creating the right video, for the right platforms at the rate necessary to engage consumers is a complex conundrum. This complexity drives inefficiencies and could deter a brand from engaging more so with the format.

Video Intelligence, through machine learning and AI, can help brands make quick decisions and remove this layer of complexity. Through understanding their audience interests and what else those viewers watch online, brands can eliminate the guesswork around creating video content. Having confidence that a concept will be appealing to viewers before the creative process or budget allocation begins will shorten the video ideation time and alleviate the risks.

Data can validate your creative approaches and provide nuance or structure to the soul of your branded content. It can be very hard to predict an audience’s reaction to a piece of creative content but using data at the outset will allow you to make smarter bets. Furthermore, understanding your audience’s interests can help uncover opportunities for your brand to differentiate from the competition.

Audience intelligence can not only help inform your decisions about what to create, but it can also help you find the right partners to get the ball rolling and in real-time.

Data can also help ensure that the talent you select will be the best fit for your project. Understanding their content expertise, past endeavors, and their owned social audience will reassure you that your creator aligns strongly with your brand’s goals.

Data can inform so much about your creative direction. Imagine what this audience intelligence can do in broader applications such as your corporate strategy or media buying strategy.

In its most traditional application, data helps brands understand if something worked, how well it worked, and then use that information to inform future content. But data should not be relegated to hindsight. Employing smart data at the outset of a project helps remove the complexity, keep up with the increasing demand for engaging video content and get ahead of cultural trends.

Parbinder Dhariwal

Senior Vice President Sales at ICX Media

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