In 2014 there were on average 300 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, according to Reelseo. That’s 18 000 hours of video, every hour – it would take you 49 years just to binge-watch every video that was uploaded on YouTube yesterday! With stats like these, it’s no wonder that online video advertising is on the rise globally, and South Africa is no exception.
Online video is growing faster than any other advertising medium aside from mobile, according to BI Intelligence. Video ad revenue will increase at a three-year compound annual growth rate of 19.5% through 2016. Contributing to this staggering estimated growth rate is that online video ads have the highest CTR of all digital ad formats (1.84%). Digital will account for more than 25% of total ad expenditures this year according to E-marketer, while mobile will make up 6.7% of the total.
South Africa has officially recognised the value of online advertising as a brand builder. The PwC entertainment and media outlook 2013-2017 study showed that the internet advertising industry in SA will have an average annual growth of 25.4% over the projected period reaching an estimated R3.7 billion in 2017.
South Africa is certainly taking notice and following the international trends in the growth of online video. While we are still a little slow in terms of measuring up to international standards in terms of adoption of online advertising, 2014 saw a definite growth in incorporating digital into the marketing mix in a more meaningful way.
By and large, South Africa still heavily relies on television commercials, and most marketers feel that they suffice for campaigns. However, if we look at international trends, linear TV is on the decline. Consumers today are inundated with content; they are choosing the content they wish to consume and even more importantly, when they wish to consume it. Gone are the days of waiting for the weekly dose of your favourite series, consumers prefer to stream their favourite shows from various online platforms, and this trend includes consumption of news and current affairs.
In addition, television ads don’t have the ability to go viral and are not usually created with online strategy in mind. Enter the online video advert. They are targeted, allowing advertisers to speak to niche (and interested) target audiences online. According to Unruly, the percentage of shares a brand video attracts online within its first three days has almost doubled in last year – from 25% in 2013 to 42% in 2014. And while two-thirds of all brand video shares occur within the first week of launch the cyclical nature of social media means that in a year or two, the same campaign can go viral all over again. And that’s the beauty of integrating online video advertising into our campaigns – their life expectancy is unparalleled.
According to Elastic Media, in South Africa, there are six million users in SA spending hours upon hours watching online videos that advertisers can target and test, without a huge television budget. In SA, the largest age group using these online platforms are between the ages of 18-24 totalling almost two million users. With the decrease in costs of production, increased availability of creative facilities and more affordable technology, the cost barrier for marketers to deploy digital video ads is reduced.
Essentially, video production is becoming more affordable, accessible and less intimidating. Add to this the increasing broadband speed and accessibility of the internet, and more and more South Africans are accessing online video and passing it on to their friends and networks. And marketers are starting to recognise the value.
If we look at 24.com’s recent investment and roll-out of News24LIVE, we can see that readers have an appetite for bespoke video. News24LIVE currently produces just less than two hours of video content per day, specifically curated for the various niche channels within the 24.com stable. With a varied content offering of viral video reports, social media reactions and in-depth expert analysis in studio, it’s no surprise that the site measured over 3.2 million page views in November, with 36% of this video being viewed on mobile phones.
News24LIVE viewership stats prove that readers want to consume news and info in video format, and as such the team are working towards increasing the video output month on month to provide readers with informative content in the format that they wish to consume it in.
Advertisers with tailored digital strategies should consider video as a new approach to better their campaign results. So whether it’s a pre-roll, videotorial, video banner, in stream or prepackaged short form video content, online video advertising is a very powerful tool, which the South African industry is only just beginning to realise. It’s going to be very interesting to see the growth this time next year.
Gustav Goosen is CEO of The SpaceStation.
Want to continue this conversation on The Media Online platforms? Comment on Twitter @MediaTMO or on our Facebook page. Send us your suggestions, comments, contributions or tip-offs via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.