Nikki Wicks
Jul 16, 2015

Online video surges in APAC but fails to engage audiences: Unruly

SINGAPORE – Brands in Southeast Asia created almost double the number of online video ads in the past 12 months compared to last year, but a drop in engagement has raised questions about the quality of the content.

Low share rates suggest a lack of emotional connection with video content
Low share rates suggest a lack of emotional connection with video content

The findings from video ad tech firm Unruly revealed that advertisers in Southeast Asia have released almost twice (+80.9 per cent) as many video ads as the previous year. However, share rates have dropped by 25.4 per cent as content has failed to engage audiences deeply.

Among markets in Southeast Asia, video ads from Thailand boasted the highest number of shares (14m) and views (963m), the research found. Thailand also has the best share rates (1.6 per cent) across APAC, in contrast to Singapore, which has the lowest shares (0.5 per cent).

“The surprising thing is the increase in sheer volume of video content created year-on-year,” said Phil Townend, managing director, APAC at Unruly. “This suggests that brands are really adopting online video as a platform, but the reduction in engagement/share rates is indicative of content quality.”

While share rates aren't everything when it comes to online video, they are an important proxy for engagement, Townend added. “Better content leads to a range of improved performance metrics across completion rates, interaction rates and share rates.”

Unruly says its ShareRank can to help marketers predict video ‘shareability’

Earlier this month, Unruly launched its virality prediction tool for video ads in the Australian market. The firm first launched its ShareRank in January 2013 to help marketers in the US and UK predict the ‘shareability’ of their video content. Versions tailored for other markets, including Brazil, Southeast Asia, France and Germany, have since been released.

“We use share-rate as a measure because it can't be bought, and there is a direct correlation between share rate and the emotional intensity of the video. Emotions are linked closely with memorability, recall, as well as on and offline sales. So brands simply should be making more emotionally resonant content, which is bespoke for purpose.

“If brands are using passive TV content for an interactive medium, then naturally engagement will take a hit. We're seeing a big rise in the amount of bespoke, emotionally driven engaging video being created so over the next few years hopefully we'll see content quality increase.”

Unruly’s latest research also found that FMCG brands in the region created the most shared videos, while revealing a big opportunity for automotive and entertainment brands to create better video content.

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