The 10 most frequent questions about video advertising online

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The 10 most frequent questions about video advertising online

Dollar Shave Club, a company that launched in 2012 with a video that gathered over 22 million views since then, was bought by Unilever for 1 billion dollars!

They had to compete with giants such as Gillette who invest hundreds of millions of dollars in TV ads every year, and they did so with an online video campaign! They were able to grow massively and with great scalability their customer base, while staying in control of their costs. 

 

 

You’re probably wondering how you could replicate that, right? To help you figure it out, we gathered the 10 most frequent questions about video marketing.

1-How much does the production of a video cost?

2-How much does 1 million view cost on YouTube or Facebook?

3- Can a video campaign generate substantial money?

4- How profitable is a video campaign?

5- How long can I run my video campaign for?

6- What should I do to make sure my video campaign works well?

7- If my video does not perform how I want to, what should I do?

8- How long should my video be?

9- What KPIs are important?

10- What should I do to get the best campaign ever?

Bonus question: what are the chances of my video going viral?

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A bit about us, so you know we’re not phonies: we specialize in video acquisition campaigns; we gathered tens of million of views; we are YouTube Certified and we spend our days watching and analysing videos!

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1- How much does the production of a video cost?

  • For a video with actors for an internet distribution, budget mostly range between £25k and £80k, but it can be a lot more expensive. It depends on the concept and the media used (for instance, the average production budget for a TV ad is 280k€ according to the  APFP).
  • If you don’t have that type of budget, you could do a presentation in motion design or with a simple setting, which budgets range from £2k to £15k depending on the concept and the artistic direction. We created a service called Right Video for that where you can order your video directly online and we’ll produce it in 2 weeks!
  • For a creative ad, the most important thing is finding the right idea. To do so, we start with a concept phase. You fill in a creative brief with about 20 questions and we get back to you with 3 great ideas. We charge this £950, not an expensive budget but which filters out the companies that are not interested.

2-How much does 1 million view cost on YouTube or Facebook?

The price varies a lot depending on your target, your country and your video. Here is a general ballpark:

  • 1 million targeted views on YouTube: about £40k-60k but only pay for views above 30s, all the others are free.
  • 1 million targeted views on Facebook: between £2k and £10k for views above 3s.

The beauty behind video marketing is that you adapt your spending based on the performance of your campaign. You don’t have to engage great amounts of money. And in the end, you can get a great ROI and Reach as you’ll see below.

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3- Can a video campaign generate substantial money?

  • To give you an example, we helped launched a menstrual cup, the Claricup, that achieved €1 million in turnover the first year. They only used a video campaign as their communication tool. The product needed some explanation and we came up with a very striking concept (an eco-friendly vampire talks about period and urges ladies to use the Claricup), we pushed the video in front of the right audience and people started buying!
  • Dollar Shave Club achieved $4 million their first year. 4 years later, they say they will hit $240m.
  • The Girls don’t poop Poo-pourri campaign, which was directed by one of our directors, helped the company triple its revenues in a year.

More generally, our clients use our creations on Youtube, Facebook but also on TV, Radio, Cinema, over several territories, etc. Once you have your campaign, it is particularly profitable to expand on it.

 

4- How profitable is a video campaign?

  • Video is not the most cost cost-effective media, but it is the one that can increase your reach and your acquisition in the most massive scale. Ultimately, video is one of the most efficient tools to build your brand.
  • For  an average basket of about £21, we have had  cost-per-acquisition of £10 for instance. For higher carts (£40), we’ve had acquisition costs between £15 and £25 depending on the market. But  that’s for first time customers that will come back and buy again. If you take into account the Customer Lifetime Value (i.e all of the benefits they will generate), video acquisition can be very profitable.
  • Moreover, a video has a general impact that makes your marketing efforts more competitive. For example, on a beauty app called Balinea, we reduced by 35% the cost-per-acquisition.
  • At first, you should aim to get a direct return on investment between 1 and 2 (i.e. £1 to £2 in added turnover for every pound invested in media buy). Once you get that, you can scale your investment to grow your reach, and that’s where your video will be mostly effective: to get you new customers on a massive scale.

5- How long can I run my video campaign for?

You can use your video for as long as a year or even more (we have clients that use one of our video every year during Spring, for instance)!

6- What should I do to make sure my video campaign works well?

The truth is that you can’t be certain your video campaign will be profitable, but you can stack the odds in your favour. Here is how:

  • Concept: make an ad and don't try to make a "buzz"! Try to find a concept that will actually sell your product, but have fun with it and try to strike your audience with a great idea that could get viral.
  • Production: then, produce many different version of your ads (different introductions, call-to-actions, lengths, etc).
  • Test: then test those versions online on Facebook and YouTube to see which one performs best, and optimize your video. 
  • Distribution: you can then scale your investment on the winning version.
  • Expand: you can then expand your campaign over several countries, on TV, Radio, etc

7- If my video does not perform how I want to, what should I do?

  • That’s where the test phase is really helpful. If the video campaign does not achieve what is wanted, the goal is to work on the conversion pipeline and on the video campaign again.
  • You can always modify your campaign and optimise it.

8- How long should my video be?

  • We shoot enough content to be able to make different versions of 90s, 30s, 20s and even 6s.
  • In the end, it’s the performance of the different versions that will tell you which length your video should be.
  • 90s versions are great to convince people to buy, whereas, 30s, 20s and 6s are great to get people to know your brand.

9- What KPIs are important?

  • We analyse conversion rates, viewing rates, click-through-rate, the number of shares, comments, etc.
  • Basically, everything about the video that will help us understand how to optimise the campaign.

10- What should I do to get the best campaign ever?

It’s a wide topic worthy of a standalone article, but here are the 2 most important things:

  • Dare and test: most of our clients come to us because they are searching for something “different”, something that will make people talk, something unique in their industry. They want to show that they can go further than anyone else. They want to shake their world. But that means taking risks and that can be a bit scary! But when you actually test different versions online, you can dare and make versions that can be shocking, original, and different. Take advantage of that and don’t be afraid. You’ll always have a more consensual version available as back up.
  • Don’t miss out on the distribution part: distributing a video is very specific, you’ll end up saving money working with a company that know how to make the most out of your video.

Bonus question: what are the chances of my video going viral?

  • To be honest, it most certainly won’t, even the Dollar Shave Club video was heavily promoted. If you do focus on virality, you will have to talk about something else than your product and if your video ends up going viral, well, you will hardly generate sales.
  • What you can do, though, is give the impression that your video is getting viral, which will give even more impact to your campaign. For that, we advise to go fast to the 1 million views mark.
  • More generally, you should focus on sales and acquisition. You will then be able to control your campaign and invest in media buy knowing it will generate money.

Should you want any additional information (or a video campaign ☺), don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Augustin de Belloy, Left Productions' co-founder

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