Need-to-Know Web Video Metrics


Driven by the inability of page views to properly measure people’s use of sites with streaming video and AJAX, Nielsen/NetRatings is switching to ranking websites by time spent. Now, how’s about those offsite widgets… (Associated Press)

“What constitutes a view?” we asked a couple weeks ago, noting disparities between various video hosting sites as researched by TubeMogul. Now the Interactive Advertising Bureau is looking to create guidelines to figure out how a stream compares to an episode to a click on the play button, according to TVWeek.

Meanwhile, Mark Cuban is elaborating on his argument that simultaneous and immediate throngs of viewers to an online video are most valuable. I still think this is a bit off-base, watching the swells of popularity wash up newly discovered video gems.

Total global ad spend is projected to grow 13 percent through 2009, while the portion of that devoted to the web grows 82 percent to $47.4 billion (9.4 percent of total estimated ad spending that year), with a key driver being online video, according to Zenith Optimedia. (Online Media Daily)

An eMarketer report we’ve already had quoted back to us by a source said last week user-generated content was set to be a $4.3 billion business in the U.S. by 2011. The global figure is expected to be $8.2 billion by then.

20-52.jpgWe read the full report over the weekend, which mentions two differing points of view on video-specific revenue expectations. eMarketer sees U.S. video (not just user-generated) advertising reaching $4.1 billion, quoting a Screen Digest estimate that user-generated video will account for $956 million of that. On the other hand, eMarketer admits, JupiterResearch was more conservative last summer when it said it saw U.S. video advertising reaching only $1.3 billion by 2011.

21-18.jpgInterestingly, eMarketer expects to see very similar numbers of content creators and user-generated content users; the 2011 U.S. projections are 95.1 million creators and 101.4 million users, growing from a similar ratio today. That’s not in alignment with the oft-quoted 80-20 rule.

Lastly, an Ipsos Insight report from last week (again, already quoted at us; bet all these folks are selling a lot of reports these days) said online video and social networking are big. Thirty-four percent of us active global internet users are estimated to have watched video online, and 13 to 14 percent of us have downloaded and/or burned movies and TV shows.



Mark Rotblat

This is a great aggregation of what’s going on with the drive for better measurement and expectations for ad revenue in the space. I’m guessing these expectations assume standards are in place.
I want to thank Frank for his input on what he wants to see in the way of metrics, and comment that at TubeMogul ( we do offer more than views (comments and ratings) and are driving towards much more.

Mark Rotblat
mark at tubemogul dot com


These are all really interesting reports, and video metrics are very important to advertisers.

However, I’d like to see more video metrics that focus on what is important to the content creators. Views and subscribers is obvious. But what about:
– # Active Users (commenting, video responses, subscribing to a feed)
– Repeat Viewers (more than just a repeat visitor – but someone who has come back to view a 2nd, 3rd, etc. video of yours)
– # of Comments
– # video responses

UGC can be very powerful – powerful enough to get people typing, sending in video – becoming active versus just being a viewer.

These metrics will continue to be more and more useful to advertisers as well, as advertisers begin to understand the UGC medium better. Interactivity with a brand can be a very powerful – just look at all of the pictures, blogs, and video that were produced with the iPhone launch. I want an iPhone now and didn’t want one a week ago just b/c of all of the cool video that i’ve seen:


Frank Sinton

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