The time for publishers to derive new revenue from popular content formats has come. You may ask, why at this moment? What has changed? First off, visual formats - in particular video content - has exploded in popularity. Second, consumers are wholly embracing the online revolution and are purchasing more products online than ever before. Third, consumers are ready to purchase on whatever platform or site that is easily accessible for them. These introduce brand new and fruitful revenue streams for video publishers and their affiliate networks - and this works in three main ways
1. Incorporate More Videos
It is imperative to understand what a video is worth and ultimately use more of it if publishers want to get ahead of their competitors. In a study done by Cisco, it was found that by 2019, 80% of all IP traffic will be video. Another research done by Aberdeen showed that sites that contained video content garnered an average of 4.7% conversion rate as compared to 2.9% for sites that did not. Consumers want content that are easily and conveniently digested and interactive. Videos do just that as they are intrinsically more interesting and interactive than content that’s static. A good example is BuzzFeed’s “Tasty” videos; in April 2017, they had gathered a billion hits.
This was just simply by providing consumers with a visual guide as to how to cook up a dish, making it more engaging and encourages action. Videos, especially interactive and shoppable videos, have become indispensable as they provide a more immediate and real-world experience for shoppers. Videos tell a story; and when this story is connected to sophisticated search tools such as visual recognition search, products in the video be found easily and thus purchased more easily as well. This is where artificial intelligence has played a large role in the video industry, because it has allowed retailers to become more searchable, and publishers to monetize content that users would prefer to consume. By integrating machine learning abilities with the browsing experience, it brings a brand new world of opportunity for publishers and retailers; and this splendid opportunities represent only the beginning of this bright chapter for retailers.
2. Understand new buying patterns and methods to increase reach to consumers
More than ever, Americans are increasingly turning to the online world to do their shopping. Further, they are also buying a bigger range of products across a wide range of channels. For this reason, publishers and retailers have to comprehend their audience so as to get the right products in front of the right people and to deliver a fantastic user experience with videos that are engaging, relevant, and entertaining.
Business Insider is one of the more recent publishers using video to drive commerce by utilizing Facebook video to increase their reach and therefore make more sales. Video strategies such as this one facilitates an unimaginable amount of data that can assist publishers in having a better understanding of their audience - and it can also be made available as a value-add to retailers. Moreover, they can impart incremental revenue for publishers that are able to provide formats such as in-video advertising and in-video purchasing to their advertisers.
3. Capture moments of inspiration and make them shoppable
Moments of inspiration are crucial sparks of the beginning of a customer journey. Publishers such as Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, and Vogue are experts in generating “moments of inspiration” with their content. They recognize that sales are lost when there are just way too many clicks between inspiration and purchase, and that whenever consumers pinpoint something they want, they are looking to buy it right there and then. At this point, shoppable videos come into the picture because this particular kind of videos provide instant gratification and a sense of engagement during those important moments. Take for instance being able to shop from Vogue online to buy that bodysuit or furniture featured in Kourtney Kardashian’s home in Calabasas - just how much easier and interactive would that be for the user!
Even large media giants such as Google are contemplating brand new methods of monetizing the attraction of popular events - Google made trending new looks that were first seen in 2016’s New York Fashion week event instantly shoppable . The tech giant saw the unprecedented demand for items seen on the New York runway and took the opportunity to become the one-stop shop that delivered these demands, as opposed to Pinterest.
The benefits of these videos and sites in addition to the clothes was that they inspired shoppers with a story to tell, powerful visuals and music, and more. They construct a perfect moment of inspiration and then deliver a great seamless experience that brings about instant gratification. All users have to do is to click a few times without having to leave the site or video to purchase what they just saw and loved.
So, what’s next?
The prospect for video content across all devices is bright and exciting. It is not long that we will see online shopping experiences that are as interactive as the real world. And it is beginning right now with video content that is more accessible, interactive, and shoppable on publishers’ sites. Publishers are in a special position to monetize this video boom. Why? For starters, they will get a new revenue stream. Second, they have what it takes and relevant experience to produce video at scale - a win situation for retailers as it means that these videos can augment their products and capture consumers’ moments of inspiration. The opportunities for brand exposure and sales gathered from video content are only going to keep increasing; and it is up to publishers to grasp this opportunity and make the best out of it.