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PixTV 29- Mythbusting: Engineering a Viral Video
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PixTV 29- Mythbusting: Engineering a Viral Video


No matter how you do the math, there's no ROI on a video that doesn't get any views. So you just have to make your video go 'viral', right? But counting on a video to go viral effortlessly is not so …

No matter how you do the math, there's no ROI on a video that doesn't get any views. So you just have to make your video go 'viral', right? But counting on a video to go viral effortlessly is not so different from planning your income from the returns of lottery scratch tickets. Virality on YouTube is often misunderstood and myths abound. When a video is engineered properly, it will drive views, amplify content sharing, and turn on widespread community interaction. In this nuts-and-bolts session we'll offer a look behind the scenes of recent video hits, plus a discussion covering the manageable (and unmanageable) variables of the viral video equation. Critical issues discussed include content planning, digital strategy, metadata, seeding, humor, production, community, social, analytics and YouTube.

Pixability is regarded as one of the top YouTube marketing companies in the world. Please join us as we share our experience of over 10,000 YouTube channels and millions of business videos. Nobody knows online video better than Pixability.

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  • This is NOT actually a viral videoHeineken paid for these views
  • In the real world, most marketers have to earn their audience. You can still get a ‘viral’ effect or free views if you produce content that people care about. This is a really small online building materials company from Canada that is giving Lowes and The Home Depot a run for their money.No, a simple video that caters EXACTLY to the needs of your audience is much more important. Kevin Doohan from Machinima will tell you more:Machinima may not have the largest audience, but they know their young male audience better than anyone.
  • Free exposure to the right audience: Slow burners are better than spiking and then crashing and burning
  • A Coca-Cola video about Overseas Foreign Workers from the Philippines. It has ‘only’ 1.3M views – but look at this: It was shared on Facebook 500k times. So when you’re evaluating how viral a video really is, look at these metrics, NOT JUST VIEWS
  • For example, haul channels frequently do give-aways of productsAnswer relevant questions: how to apply certain make-up, how to solve home improvement quandries
  • What is seeding?
  • One of our customers sprang for a seeding campaign. Any they got lots of views: almost 300k but only 17 clicked through to their site. The average YT ad campaign gets you 3.5% click-through.Beware when someone tells you that they’ll get this done for youMany operators pay people to blog about your video and include the video in the postsIs social sharing an end in itself? Even if those shares are happening in Hungary?
  • Read quotesThese sites pay people that are desperate to earn a few bucks to watch you videos. Is this really the kind of audience that you want?Mention Facebook games – in game advertising might work if you are advertising snack food or a new game. Just be watchful about the demographics.
  • So how
  • How many people are watching?How are people finding your content?Who is watching?How in-depth is the content that they are watching?
  • Go slower here….How do I find out what the right content for my audience is? You don’t necessarily have day-long creative forest retreats to find out what works, you can look at audience data (like our Caffeine software) to find out what people are watching
  • So earlier I dissed certain types of paid views. Does that mean you shouldn’t pay for views? NOOO. But if you do it, YouTube is a unique ecosystemItallows for marketers to do precise targetingIt allows you to use your paid media spend to very deliberately increase the organic part of a brand’s video strategy.Promoted views fuel your earned media views by making these videos rank higher under ‘recommended videos’Those views drive more viewers to your channel, thereby increasing your views even more
  • Example: beer ad at 6 am?
  • Mentos
  • Add Mentos
  • Incredible and on-brand message
  • Does it have to be Gangnam Style to be successful?


  • 1. 1PixTV29 WebinarApril 18, 2013
  • 2. 5Questions? Twitter: @pixability #pixtv29 webinar@pixability.com Speakers: @bettinahein & @robciampa
  • 3. 6PixabilityWe solve YouTube for marketers and agenciesAdvertisingSolutionsDrive targeted traffic quicklyContent MarketingSolutionsBuild a long-term audienceOn
  • 4. 7What is a viral video?Wikipedia:"A viral video is a video that becomes popular throughthe process of Internet sharing, typically through videosharing websites, social media and email.”Why should marketers care?FREE Awareness?FREE Views?
  • 5. 8The Whole Hog of A Viral VideoUnderbellyHeartBrain RibsTail
  • 6. 9AgendaThe whole hog of a viral video• Heart: creating good content• Ribs: social outreach and sharing• Underbelly: robots and incentivized views• Brain: engineering it with data• Right Feed: paid YouTube ads• Tail: luck
  • 7. 10Brilliant commercial that went viral?84% of views from paid views
  • 8. 11Brilliant commercial that went viral?59% of views from advertising
  • 9. 12The Heart: Good ContentUnderbellyHeartBrain RibsTail
  • 10. 13Sometimes things just come together3,243,299 timesshared onFacebook
  • 11. 14Good content is often a steady view earner• Know your targets intimately• Example: Build Direct from Canada
  • 12. 15Steady view earners deliver better ROI• Know your targets intimately• Example: Build Direct from Canada
  • 13. 16Questions? Twitter: @pixability #pixtv29 webinar@pixability.com Speakers: @bettinahein & @robciampa
  • 14. 17The Ribs: Social Outreach and SharingUnderbellyHeartBrain RibsTail
  • 15. 18Real virality is often smaller541,296 timesshared onFacebook
  • 16. 19The ribs: social outreach and sharingConnecting to your real target audience Make relevant content Lobby tastemakers and find passionate enthusiasts Build subscribership Encourage participation Use cross-pollination of email, FB, Twitter, Pinterest, G+RelevancePassionateEnthusiastsSubscribers ParticipationCross-pollination
  • 17. 20Seeding promises“Get your video seen by the right people.”“We generate millions of monthly opt-in views onsocial networks, mobile devices and YouTube.”“We use proprietary technology to turn targetaudiences into engaged viewers and engagedviewers into customers.”
  • 18. 21Caveat emptor: Seeding can be seedyA supposedly “organic”blog post generated by aseeding campaign.“…XYZ — the viralvideo house behindthis clip. XYZ knows.Shop at XYZ.”
  • 19. 22What are you getting when you seed?Click-through rates fora seeded campaign:Views: 284,894Click-throughs: 17CTR: 0.006%Compare to averageYouTube adCTR: 3.5%
  • 20. 23The Underbelly: Bots and „Incentivized‟UnderbellyHeartBrainRibsTail
  • 21. 24Buying robot views: 1M views for $800
  • 22. 25Why this is a bad idea: Google will catch you
  • 23. 26Slightly better cuts: incentivized views
  • 24. 27The Brain: How to Engineer ItUnderbellyHeartBrain RibsTail
  • 25. 28How many people are watching? What?
  • 26. 29What is your target audience watching?
  • 27. 30Understand the audience and competitionLook at metrics on:• Audience size• Most popular contenttypes and sub topics• Social mediareactions• Viewer sentiment• Traffic Sources
  • 28. 31Metadata: what matters and why• Titles• Tags• Descriptions• Target links• Annotations
  • 29. 32Track YouTube search and social rankings
  • 30. 33The Right Feed: Paid AdsUnderbellyHeartBrain RibsTailFeed
  • 31. 34Paid, owned and earned media work togetherPromotedVideo AdSocial SharingBuild a communityaround your videocontentYouTube AdsMuch more cost-effective than TV andonline display adsYouTube ChannelA video channelthat you own andcontrol fullyWebsiteDriving conversionsthrough highly qualifiedwebsite traffic
  • 32. 35YouTube ad placements: Choose carefullyBest practices:1. Use varying formats (search,in-display, pre-roll)2. No need to stick to 30-second spots3. Use time of day according totarget4. Geographic focus ifnecessary5. Don’t always optimize fordirect website clicks
  • 33. 36The TailUnderbellyHeartBrain RibsTail
  • 34. 37LUCK
  • 35. 38Serendipity can happen
  • 36. 39Engineering results: It all works togetherChannel subscriber growthOrganic YouTube TrafficPre-campaign CampaignPre-campaign Campaign
  • 37. 40Summary• Heart: Know your audience before you create• Ribs: Share the passion and seed carefully• Underbelly: Don’t do it• Brain: Track and clone yourself to success• Right Feed: YouTube ads done right areworth it• Tail: Be ready when luck happens
  • 38. 41Get this presentation?• Bettina Hein, Founder and CEO Email: hein@pixability.com Phone: (617) 395 1461 @bettinahein• Rob Ciampa, VP Sales & Marketing Email: rob@pixability.com Phone: (617) 774-9600 @robciampaGo to http://pixvid.tv/sxviral
  • 39. 42YouTube Advertising: How It Works1. Select:Choose one orseveral of your YouTubevideos as ads.2. Place:Put ads whereyour target audiencealready is.3. Call to Action:Users can click throughto your website for moreinformation. Value for money: Charged per engaged video view, not per click orimpression Extremely flexible: Various cost per view (CPV) ranges availabledepending on format and targeting
  • 40. 43Does it have to be Gangnam Style?
  • 41. 44When should you buy incentivized views?• Never to inflateviews• Awareness only– do not expectany action• When there is agood match ofdemographic• Example:promotion ofvideo gamelaunch ongaming site
  • 42. 45ConclusionThe whole hog of a viral video• Heart: creating good content• Ribs: social outreach and sharing• Underbelly: robots and incentivized views• Brain: engineering it with data• Right Feed: paid YouTube ads• Tail: luck
  • 43. 46Questions? Twitter: @pixability #pixtv29 webinar@pixability.com Speakers: @bettinahein & @robciampa
  • 44. www.pixability.com888-PIX-VIDEO888-749-8433Thank You!