Mediahub: The Completion Rate Is Still A Viable Video Performance Metric

TuneInMediahub, the planning and buying arm of Mullen Lowe, has partnered with cross-device platform Tapad to help identify viewers cross-screen.

In doing so, it hopes to help brands – as well as “tune-in” clients such as entertainment and media broadcasters PBS, VH1 and National Geographic Channel – drive audience viewership across all devices.

“Given the decline of TV viewership on linear platforms, getting in front of potential viewers in other places is getting increasingly important,” said Laurel Boyd, VP and group digital media director at Mediahub. “We need the ability to target people sequentially and with more personalized messaging based based on where they are and what device they’re using, since we’re seeing usage grow to 25% consumption throughout the day on mobile.”

Mediahub has already deployed Tapad for two cross-screen campaigns, including a promotion for “Ultimate Survival Alaska,” a NatGeo reality show documenting precarious treks across the tundra.

“For people who watch ‘Ultimate Survival Alaska,’ we looked at what else are they likely to watch on television,” said Boyd. Mediahub used banner ads and video pre-roll to sequentially target users around a custom audience it built with Tapad based on demographics and TV-viewing behavior.

Response rates lifted almost 40% for people exposed on two or three devices. “We were able to quantify what the additional exposure on each device was able to deliver on the back end,” Boyd said. 

With VH1, it drove incremental reach and tune-in among women 18-24 for the reality show “Walk of Shame Shuttle,” an unscripted series in the vein of HBO’s “Taxicab Confessions.” Mediahub and Tapad identified its target audience, women with an interest in nightlife, and drove an 81% completion rate for the video campaign.

Video completion rates are still useful to agencies and brands, despite increasing interest in engagement or viewability-based KPIs. Post-campaign analysis and conversions are important for retargeting users based on their additional interests, said Boyd, but completion rate is one of the most important metrics for TV clients.

“We’ve done some analysis to figure out if completion rates correlate to tune-in [on TV or other channels], but we’ve found that when you’re asking somebody to watch a video, sometimes they’re satisfied just by watching the video,” she said, which is particularly true for TV clients. “We find that if you’re measuring engagement rate, it might not look as compelling sometimes because the user already got what they needed from viewing the video.”

In terms of which platform is gaining most share in video activations, YouTube is great for short-form viewing while Facebook is the first place people go in the morning to check social media, so the agency has seen different success on each platform, Boyd said.

Despite eMarketer’s prediction that mobile video ad spend will increase 70% to $2.6 billion this year, there are still limitations. Desktop commands a lion’s share of total video ad spend and marketers have yet to shift demand dollars to mobile video in full. And, with governing bodies like the Digital Advertising Alliance pushing toward mobile opt-outs for behavioral advertising, the adoption curve could remain steep.

“There’s definitely a lot more concern and conversations about that with clients,” Boyd said. “We’re careful we work with partners who safeguard against any use of personally identifiable information. We really dig into what is the data, where is it coming from, how they get their data.”


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