Judging the success of online video

As part of our ongoing discussion of what makes online video different than what we see on TV, you might want to check out new research from Interpret, LLC.  The survey focused on more than 2,000 broadband Internet users between the ages 13- 54 who had watched a video online in the past 24 hours. 

Researchers found that most people watch online video during certain times of the day:  12 p.m. – 3 p.m. and 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. – the least amount of online viewing occurs during the dinner hour (6 p.m. – 9 p.m.).  The information may have some implications for Web producers trying to decide when to post compelling video content.  For example, a remote crew may have more incentive now to get video back to the newsroom before 3 p.m., in the hopes of capturing that early afternoon audience.

Also useful is the study’s model for measuring online video engagement – basically a method for judging the effectiveness of a video on the Web.

The new model for engagement is based on the following variables:

  • Completion of the video – Completion is a strong indicator of engagement because online videos are generally a self-selected experience where the viewer has to first decide to start watching a video and then decide to leave that page once they are done.
  • Attention to content – This variable refers to the amount of attention someone gives to a video experience, compared to the amount of attention they give to the other people or tasks in their environment at that moment. Attention paid is a strong indicator of passion and the potential opportunity to make an ad impression.
  • Actions taken – This variable refers to the actions viewers might have taken before, during, or after watching the streaming video (e.g. posting a comment, rating the video, sharing the video).

As newsrooms struggle to determine how much emphasis to put on Web video, as well as how to measure the success of its efforts, this model may provide another important measure beyond total number of views.


3 comments for “Judging the success of online video

  1. August 12, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    That’s some interesting research. It’s amazing how you can increase your sites hit rate by doing a bit of research into audience viewing habits.

    Having a hit on youtube doesn’t neccessarily mean the viewer has even watched the video all the way through!

  2. Deb Wenger
    August 12, 2009 at 4:19 pm

    You’re right – it reminds me of the early days of blogging when some folks – myself included – thought comments were the ultimate measure of success. Now, of course, we know that lots of things need to be taken into consideration when evaluating a blog’s impact and value.

    Thanks for reading! (And commenting!)


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