The Digital Essentials, Part 3
Developing a robust digital strategy is both a challenge and an opportunity. Part 3 of the Digital Essentials guide series explores five of the essential technology-driven experiences customers expect, which you may be missing or not fully utilizing.
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Just as Paula Cole sang back in 1997, “Where have all of the cowboys gone?”, I wonder, where have all the video in-search ads gone? And while Paula was singing about John Wayne and gender stereotypes in a sarcastic, but oh-so-beautiful tone, I am seriously wondering – where are the videos in paid search results? The Google video search ad launched in 2011 within Google’s Search network and isn’t picking up steam the same way video pre-roll and in-banner ads have grown.
We know that the U.S. online audience loves video. According to eMarketer, an estimated 63.5% of the U.S. population and nearly 79% of internet users will watch digital video content regularly this year. And between 2015 and 2019, the U.S. will have close to 20 million new digital video viewers. That’s a lot of attention spans. You would think video in-search ads would be attractive to every consumer looking for the answer to their undying questions – who was the first drummer of Nirvana? what color was that dress on that one celebrity who fell on her way to accept her award? is yoga good for my dog?
Video tends to favor the upper funnel. Video in-search ads would seem to be the obvious complement for converting consumers to customers. But video in-search impressions are a fraction of the total impressions, which begs the question – why?
One reason may be because video often provides a brand experience rather than convincing them to click through to the brand site. Also, the instant visual gratification of a video in-search ad may have satisfied the consumer’s love of motion. So once the video ends, the consumer moves on to the next search result. Of course, a likely reason for the lack of video in-search ads may simply because they can take up too much time to load or a phone doesn’t have the right player.
Combining larger screens and growing memory space for mobile along with the significant increase in mobile search queries, I see the consumer expectation will be for a paid search ad to have a video option. Then, we could all watch the search result show us that John Wayne’s real name is Marion Morrison.