As the worlds of television and online video continue on their collision course, marketers face numerous obstacles. Here are the challenges that Tremor Media is tackling on behalf of the industry.
There are multiple forces driving the convergence of television and online video in both directions: from TV to PC, and from PC to TV. When the dust from this convergence inevitably settles, there will be no more distinctions between TV and online video -- there will instead be a continuum of video that flows freely between platforms. In short, says Shane Steele, vice president of marketing for Tremor Media, content will become liquid.
The integrated future of video looks bright for marketers, but we're not there yet. And the barriers to the eventual liquidation of content are many. Here are the top six obstacles, as identified by Steele, as well as a look at how companies such as Tremor are working toward solutions:
Cable companies and online video sites continue to struggle to understand the value chain when it comes to translating TV to online video, and back to TV again. And indeed, the business model that ensures no money is being left on the table has yet to emerge. However, many companies are actively engaged in exploring profitable models through which content can flow freely. And rest assured, Steele says, the future will not require marketers to sacrificed analog dollars for digital pennies.
There's no shortage of video content on the web, Steele notes. The challenge is achieving quality and scale when content is as fragmented as it is. Indeed, that's precisely the challenge being tackled by online video ad networks such as Tremor Media. And as sufficient levels of aggregation are achieved, content will begin to move more freely.
There's no lack of available formats when it comes to video advertising, and the complexity of such options has been enough to keep some companies out of the online video space altogether. However, Steele notes, technology partners and industry standards are emerging in the marketplace and increasingly bringing order to the chaos. Such developments promise to ease the headaches of marketers who are overwhelmed by the seemingly limitless options within the online video advertising world.
In recent months, there has been a growing call within the online world for a creative renaissance. Indeed, Steele says, an overemphasis on measurement is holding back the development of online video advertising. It's time for digital to get its fair share of creative execution, and branded video content will likely be a key driver in this regard.
"Just because it can be measured doesn't mean it matters," Steele says. In fact, she adds, it's time for marketers to rethink their obsession with clicks.
"Can you tell how much someone weighs with a yardstick?" Steele asks. Of course not. In the same way, she notes, in the online video world, there is no coordination between clicks and brand metrics. Thus, companies like Tremor Media are reevaluating the way that marketers measure the impact of their campaigns.
At present, the video buying process is a tremendously complex one. But as industry players begin to sort out some of the aforementioned barriers, the process promises to become simpler. And as online video continues to overcome these hurdles, dollars will begin to flow more freely -- just like the content.
Lori Luechtefeld is editor of iMedia Connection.