Game Changer: Mobile Video Advertising

Operators and service providers are tackling the video traffic clog with a variety of strategies including network upgrades, NFV, SDN and a variety of compression tools. However, on the upside, increased video traffic also presents a revenue opportunity.

Video, although costly to create and tricky to carry, now provides an opportunity for service providers to lure in customers. The Video Point is one innovative, no-muss and lightening fast way that service providers and carriers can launch their own video offering in a matter of days. The Video Point scours the internet for video, forges the necessary relationships with the content owners, and can package and brand that video to create an entire video platform designed to meet the individual needs of the provider.

For instance, ice fishing content and video is a big-time draw for Nordic customers. The Video Point will go out and aggregate all of the available ice fishing content online, rank it according to popularity and viewership, and package that content in a branded service provider environment...all in a matter of days. Looking to lure in Indonesian customers? The Video Point can create an entire channel dedicated to Indonesian cricket.

“In two to three weeks we can give our customers 20-30 channels,” Jacob Vind, co-founder and CTO of The Video Point says. “I am amazed at how easy it really is to make a deal with small video producers.”

SingTel and Globe Philippines are just two major operators already using The Video Point's solution.

Native video advertising

Native advertising, or the practice of presenting an advertising message in the context of the content a user is searching for, is critical to the future of e-Commerce and the service provider. Amazon, in Sept. 2013, introduced native video and the opportunity for brands and advertisers to embed interactive how-to and demo videos based on the personalized searches of the user. So if a shopper is shopping for a toothbrush on Amazon, for instance, an advertiser can embed a video educating a shopper about oral hygiene. The video can be click-able and viewed across many devices, leading to a sticky, attractive opportunity for brands to be seen as friendly and empowering of the customer rather than just another logo choice. Even stalwart The New York Times latest redesign, launched in Jan. 2014, features native advertising.

Service providers, with their access to limitless analytics and capacity, need to capitalize on the opportunity native video advertising provides. According to a case study conducted by Neilsen and Sharethrough, an online native video advertising distributor, native ads generated 82 percent brand lift among users exposed to the ads.

One of the first moves in the personalized video direction for service providers is AT&T's implementation of the video bill solution developed by SundaySky. Video is an entertaining and effective educational tool for service providers to explain complicated services and offerings.Now service providers are also implementing personalized video ads which offer an average of seven times the return on ad spend, according to SundaySky's Vice President of Marketing Kelly Ford.  

Ford offers the example of a local cable provider: A customer visits the provider’s site and views a specific product or searches for specific plans, but leaves the site without signing up. With SundaySky’s SmartVideo ads, when the customer visits YouTube, for instance, a pre-roll video commercial will air with an ad showcasing the specific product or plan that the particular customer was previously viewing. It's a smart, targeted, and automatic way to convert lookey-loos to bona fide customers in an instant. Retailers are already using the SmartVideo tool for advertising, according to Ford. She adds that both T-Mobile and Cox are already using the SmartVideo solution.  

What's also important to remember is that, as the demand for native, personalized video increases, so will the demand for content that those ads can be wrapped around, offering a two-fold opportunity for service providers to carry and monetize both the increase in video content as well as the advertisements themselves.

The days of being crushed under the weight of video traffic are over. Video now presents all sorts of opportunities for service providers. The verdict is in: subscribers love online video and even the most staid and conservative members of the broadcast community, like Nielsen, have started to get in on the action. It doesn't have to be an enormously expensive undertaking and its not necessary to have access to the next "House of Cards." Niche, smart video plays are where the action is and service providers who get in will be in a position to replace the pain of video carriage with the pleasure of revenue generation.  


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