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Branded video campaigns for the holiday season

Branded video campaigns for the holiday season Brian Shin

In November, the emergence of branded holiday videos and the release of noteworthy viral campaigns allowed both new and old brands to make their way onto the chart. Both Symbio Wildlife (with the help of Australia.com) and Western Union are new to the chart with high viewership for two video campaigns that pull at the heartstrings.

Symbio Wildlife Park, a small zoo in southeastern Australia, released a video of an adorable baby koala named Imogen in mid-November that went viral. The video was posted onto Australia.com's Facebook page, and it is here that most views and social interactions took place. Australia.com and Symbio Wildlife Park have shared a series of videos of the baby koala, also called a joey, and the "Raising Imogen" campaign totals over 30 million views.

Western Union, in an attempt to encourage social entrepreneurship, has launched a video campaign to promote their "Chain of Betters" program. This program supplies innovators with funds to solve a social issue in their native country. The most highly viewed video highlights three projects in Mexico, Ghana, and India: a community worker who designed a portable mill for corn farmers, a family who created a backup generator for a local hospital, and a boat that was built for children to cross a large river to get to school. The videos are powerful both cinematically and narratively. The videos also direct viewers to submit their own proposal for a project on chainofbetters.com. Released in early November, the campaign gained over 29 million views in November.
Holiday-themed retail campaigns released in November have brought some brands to the top of the list. John Lewis, a department store chain based in the U.K., released their much-anticipated Christmas video that has the internet buzzing. Titled "#ManOnTheMoon" this emotional video follows a little girl named Lily as she attempts to send gifts to an old man who lives on the moon. In one of her final attempts on Christmas Day, she attaches balloons to a gift that successfully floats to the moon and is received by the man. He opens the gift to find a telescope, which he uses to look at Earth and see Lily waving back at him. The poignant ad, similar to the brand's previous Christmas campaigns, focuses on giving thoughtful gifts in order to connect with people who might otherwise be alone during the holidays. The campaign was responsible for over 31 million of the brand's 35 million views in November and, due to the brand's successful holiday campaigns each year, this is the third year in a row John Lewis has made the top ten brands in November.

AT&T also released seasonal videos that helped the brand make it back on the chart in November. In order to showcase their special holiday deals, AT&T released three animated videos featuring Rudolph, Santa, and Bumble Mumble the Snow Monster from the classic stop-motion Rankin/Bass Christmas special. The videos' light-hearted humor and Christmas-themed nostalgia helped the "Holiday Deals" campaign garner over 4 million views in November.

Technology brands had a large presence among the top brands in November and holiday content helped many of these brands make it in the top 10. In a humorous and light-hearted endeavor, Samsung's "Happy Accidents" holiday campaign was responsible for 25 percent of the brand's views for the month. This campaign showcases the amusing antics of people who ignore or encourage accidents that will break their TV to give them an excuse to buy the new Samsung SUHD television. In one scenario, a father hanging Christmas lights sees his son hitting their TV with a toy hammer and then rushes over to switch the fake hammer for a real one. Next, a woman watches her husband wrap a vacuum cord around a wobbly table that holds their TV and directs him to pull the cord further in an attempt to knock the table and the TV over. In another scenario a man purposefully throws a ball for his dog to fetch under the table a TV rests on, and the dog goes right for it. The ad later cuts to the dog sitting in the bed of a truck standing next to the broken TV as the car drives past a billboard for the new Samsung SUHD TV with the tagline, "Any Excuse."

Another retailer, Walmart, took a humorous approach with their holiday campaign "As Sung by Craig Robinson" which garnered over 21 million views for the brand in November. The holiday videos feature the hilarious Craig Robinson singing about holiday gift ideas and deals shoppers can get at Walmart.

Facebook moved up a few spots this month due in part to the brand's "What's On Your Mind?" campaign. Facebook released a Thanksgiving themed video in November about a couple going home for the holiday as part of "What's On Your Mind?" and as a whole, the campaign was responsible for more than half of the brand's over 38 million views in November.
Brands started gearing up for the holiday season in November and began launching this year's holiday video campaigns. Many of the top brands in November gained a large part of their viewership from holiday content and as the holiday season continues we expect December to follow the same trend, with even more brands releasing holiday-themed videos as the season comes to an end.

Brian Shin is CEO and founder at Visible Measures

iMedia's Brands in Video chart, powered by Visible Measures, focuses on aggregated brand view counts across related social video ad campaigns. Each brand and campaign is measured on a True Reach basis, which includes viewership of both brand-syndicated and audience-driven video clips. The data are compiled using the patented Visible Measures platform, a constantly growing repository of analytic data on close to 400 million videos tracked across more than 300 online video destinations.

Note: This analysis does not include Visible Measures' paid-placement (e.g., overlays; pre-, mid-, and post-roll) performance data or video views on private sites. This chart does not include movie trailers, video game campaigns, TV show, or media network promotions. View counts are incremental by month.

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Brian Shin is the founder and CEO of Visible Measures. He has more than 15 years experience starting and building innovative early stage technology companies. Brian has co-founded several successful Internet startups, including web-based...

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