How to create efficient videos – IAB Video Conference report

Éva Szántai

Director, Product & Technology

Thanks to our partner, Celtra I have not been anywhere other than London at the Video Conference organized by IAB.

The event took place at the Riverfront Bar & Restaurant Southbank, and the professional organising was palpable at first. After leaving the registration desk I found myself in a hall for welcoming the guests where the sponsors had separated stands: Aol, TubeMogul and Celtra. At the Partner studio by Aol stand I had tested augmented reality glasses which allowed me to bomb the conference venue, blast a hole in the wall through which a spaceship came in. Meanwhile I saw clearly the people talking around me.

The presentations had begun punctually at 10.30 in a room similar to a cinema hall: it was comfortable and everything was visible. The projections truly appeared in the size of big screen movies. The presentation lineup gave us a 360-degree insight on the industry: there were speakers from the client, the agency, the producer and advertiser side as well. Amongst the presenters were such companies as The Guardian, Facebook, Twitter, Doubleclick, Hotels.com, Yahoo, MediaCom or Celtra.

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It was made clear that on the client side how much extra effort it requires to squeeze the shooting of a video for mobile into the production process – however it’s indispensable to start a video campaign without it. Hotels.com showed examples how they managed to fit into a tight budget and used the specialties of the platform: turned the mute mobile videos and the skip button into their own benefits.

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Not so later Ian Crocombe from Facebook held a thought provoking presentation. At Madhouse we have strongly cultivated the belief that shorter videos are more effective on mobile. But Crocombe had highlighted that effectiveness does not depend on the length of the video. He had shown a couple of videos 1-2 minutes long which contributed all the major elements. And the matter is:

  • The brand has to appear in the video every few seconds, so bounce between the brand and the story.
  • The story should start with the end. Viewers don’t wait for the punch line but decides instantly whether they will watch the video or not.
  • The users’ attentions should be raised over and over again to watch the video till the end (either with humour or spectacular images)

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Johnathan Milne, the CRO chief of Celtra had shown that besides the above mentioned how the vertical cut could provide a more comprehensive experience in contrast to horizontal cut videos that only prevail if the mobile is rotated. However, only a small amount of users makes this movement, because they don’t like if the device forces them to act.

If I had to mention one more presentation (but all of them were superficially informative), then I would choose Widespace’s. Even the presenting style was nothing like any other we saw before, because there were two of them on stage, and presented the latest UK and global mobile video watching statistics like a show. It turned out only 1% of the viewers turn on the sound on auto played, mute mobile videos. We also saw a very interesting statistics about the attention of user: they decide within 3 seconds whether the video is interesting for them or not, if not they scroll further immediately. Thus, the attention has to be caught and the punch has to be revealed within that period of time.

I have only enlisted a few, but possibly the most important segments of the workshop that are great prints of how exciting the event was. Besides that, every presentation was filled with interesting news, benchmark data and other surprising things. Finally, I felt I got a real insight into the western world’s progressive thinking on advertising.

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