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Social Video Seeding Vs. Video Ad Networks. Do your homework.

So you’re looking for a video seeding or syndication partner… Unlike people (though this is also debatable) not all video seeding companies are created equal, and a number of brands have been asking the difference. Why is there such a jump in cost per view between video seeding or syndication vendors?

Seeding typically falls under two camps: social video seeding and video ad networks. Considering social media is moving in the direction of video for 2011 this is a really important question to answer. In the coming months it will be extremely imperative for brands dipping their feet into branded entertainment video to have an acute understanding of the difference between the two when deciding the best fit for a campaign.

Social Video Seeding:

A social video seeding company is social marketing for brand videos. Strategies focus on earned placements for blogs and social media (Facebook, Twitter, Forums) leveraging influencers, communities, and individuals. Earned placement refers to publicity gained through promotional efforts other than advertising, as opposed to paid media, which refers to publicity gained through advertising (pre-roll, post-roll, auto-play) source. Social video becomes important when your clients end goal is brand sentiment, user-sharing, and viewer engagement. In a perfect world videos best suited for this type of seeding have light and clever branding, entertaining hooks, and leverage a meme or online influencer/web personality. A great example of this would be 2010’s Levis Walk Across America campaign.


Video Ad Networks:

This is the online banner ad of video, the equivalent to a billboard on the internet (for you display media people). Often the video shows up in form of an auto-play, pre-roll, or post-roll for existing online content. This is a good fit for videos with overt branding, not supported by compelling content- a very commercial/television feel. Often times these networks post the campaign videos on proprietary players and views counted are not limited to the front-facing counters on video sites (Youtube, Vimeo)-Front-facing meaning you can physically *see* the number of views in the counter. This is very much a rich, promoted effort opposed to a highly engaged, user initiated view. Something to be weary of when working with a video ad network: they often try to portray themselves as “social,” however they’re not. A good rule of thumb to avoid this is, “you get what you pay for”- If it sounds to good to be true chances are, it is.

Tip! Ask smart questions:

+ Are views guaranteed?

+ Where are views counted? (Front-facing Youtube or behind the scenes/proprietary player)

+ Are views auto-play or user-initiated? (forced vs. voluntary views)

+ What metrics are included in reporting?

+ How is seeding campaign tracked? Third-party listening platforms or human eyes and ears?

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3 Responses to Social Video Seeding Vs. Video Ad Networks. Do your homework.

  1. Jason Keath
    - March 26, 2011

    Do you have examples of the companies/vendors that are doing both of these?I am more interested in those focused on video seeding.

  2. Loren Rochelle
    - August 6, 2011

    Hey Jason! I apologize for the radio silence! My site has been neglected as of late. To answer your question, companies that are doing distribution (or seeding) would be first and foremost the one I work with, Giant Media 😉
    We specialize in distribution of branded entertainment across web publishers in an in-story environment married with editorial (essentially digital PR). Other companies that do similar work (and own their technology) would be Sharethrough and Jun Group… it’s a very small market. Then there are companies that sell distribution services but outsource delivery: Unruly Media, Feed Company, Blog Stand to name a few…

    Examples of video ad networks: Tremor Media, YuMe, Brightroll. These companies typically sell preroll and autoplay across specific networks that they have exclusives with. This can be ok if you’re looking for blatant ad placements they’re not a good option if you’re looking for sharing and engagement. You also have to be careful of where the content is being placed. Because these companies are limited to exclusive network relationships they can put content at risk by placing it in environments that are not necessarily brand safe and are not the correct content fit if that makes sense.

    I hope this is helpful – thanks for taking an interest!

  3. Simon J Green
    Twitter: thexgeneagency
    - November 13, 2014

    Hi Loren, THis post is gold. I linked to it from our blog. We’re a video agency, and we’ve been pushing our clients to be more proactive with their content once we’ve finished making it for them. Gotta have a strategy behind it! And utilising these methods can give them the boost they need to raise organic views.
    Of course, then they need to know what they want after that view!
    Below is the blog post with your link inside.

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