Users who watch an online video ad show greater interest in brand pages than those who arrive at the page by click, making completion rates a better success metric than click-through rates (CTR), says Vindico [pdf] in an April 2012 report. Based on an analysis of 30 billion video ad impressions it served in 2011, the company found that of viewers who navigated past the brands’ landing pages, 96% had previously completed the brands’ video ads without clicking, compared to just 4% who had clicked on the ads. And of those navigating to a checkout page, 98% had completed the brands’ video ads without clicking. This is despite the proportion of viewers who arrived at the landing page being relatively evenly split between both groups.
Advertisers looking to capitalize on this finding may want to consider placing their ads during long form content (typically lasting longer than 10 minutes). Ads placed during long-form content had an 88% completion rate, 16% higher than the 76% completion rate for ads placed during short-form content (videos lasting less than 10 minutes).
The high completion rate for ads served during long-form content might be a reflection of viewers’ propensity to complete these longer videos. According to February 2012 results from Freewheel, completion rates for videos longer than 20 minutes rose to 88% from 82% in Q3, despite a rise in the number of ads placed in this content, from 5.02 to 6.92.
Meanwhile, data from Vindico’s “Year in Review” insights report indicates that mid-roll ads had the best completion rate of all ad positions in 2011, at 94%, outpacing pre-roll (71%), post-roll (58%), and in-banner (26%) ads. Completion rates generally declined the lengthier the ad: 0-15 second ads had the highest completion rates, at 78%, ahead of 16-30 second ads (74%), 31-60 second ads (61%), and ads longer than 1 minute (54%).
Overall, 96% of the ads delivered were either 15-second (47%) or 30-second (49%) ads.