Home On TV & Video Marketers Are Outgrowing Video Completion Rate. Here’s Why

Marketers Are Outgrowing Video Completion Rate. Here’s Why


On TV & Video” is a column exploring opportunities and challenges in advanced TV and video. 

Today’s column is by Katie Cladis, VP of product at Digital Remedy.

For years, video completion rate (VCR) has been a top metric for digital marketers. The metric held media accountable for delivering impressions that brought value to a campaign, while giving marketers a pricing model they could get behind.

Even today, over 60% of marketers still consider views or plays their most important metric. And yet, there’s so much more that marketers can measure to get a clearer understanding of video performance against more nuanced, campaign-specific goals.

Marketers’ evolving needs

Today, viewability, ad fraud and brand safety are all important considerations. We’ve also seen a push toward transacting on outcomes and actions – marketers have come to think of video for its performance marketing potential.

Meanwhile, audience consumption habits have evolved, too. Higher-quality content on CTV and more time at home have driven growth, accelerated by the rise of native digital TV platforms.

More than a third of streaming viewers subscribe to four or more services, a rapidly growing share. This has led to advertising saturation in the viewing experience. And when the volume of exposure to ads is greater, that decreases the likelihood the viewer will retain or take action because of the ad. 

What’s more, marketers right now are facing uncertainty about how a coming recession would affect their budgets. With tighter budgets, CPMs would need to work harder to deliver results, which means video ad spend must be more accountable to action. 

But all of these changes bring fresh opportunities.

Better measurement opportunities


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Consumers had previously expected premium ad experiences in linear TV only. Now, they expect those experiences in CTV and OTT, where they’re typically more cost-effective. CTV and OTT also hold great appeal to DTC brands, whose businesses rely on consumers making purchases via digital channels.

Technological changes since the adoption of VCR have concurrently cracked open marketers’ ability to measure a video campaign’s performance. Marketers can track an audience’s exposure to an ad and link that exposure to an action. 

We’ve seen increased sophistication in incrementality measurement to attribute lift to exposure. Attribution models have evolved, allowing marketers to find models suitable for their goals and optimize toward incremental lift. And marketers can take advantage of real-time optimization using AI, which can allocate spend toward the ad units, channels and audiences that are likely to deliver the best performance.

VCR’s evolving role

VCR doesn’t cut it anymore. While it can illuminate aspects of advertising’s performance, it just shouldn’t be at the very center of a modern video ad campaign.

Instead, marketers in video can augment and enhance their measurement methodologies by exploring and implementing more nuanced metrics and tools already at their disposal. In digital media, performance metrics reign supreme. And now they’re measurable in video, including OTT/CTV. Attribution tools can measure campaign impact across all channels, and incremental measurement allows marketers to directly attribute actions. 

Familiarity for familiarity’s sake isn’t enough of a reason to hold VCR above other metrics. There’s great value in a successful digital video campaign. Marketers need to explore the metrics and tools that can deliver the value they’re due.

Follow Digital Remedy (@cpxi) and AdExchanger (@adexchanger) on Twitter.

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