What to Expect When You’re Explaining, Part 4: A Brief Introduction to Video Analytics

By July 24, 2014 No Comments

This blog post is Part 4 of the series “What To Expect When You’re Explaining.” Be sure to check out Parts “How Much Does an Animated Explainer Video Cost?“, “What to Look For in An Animated Explainer Video Producer“, and “The Animated Explainer Video Production Process“! 

So, you’ve got a really great online explainer video. You even know how to promote it so that your audience is watching it. But how do you know how well your video is actually doing? Where are those measurable results? The answer: video analytics.

Related: Three Easy Ways to Increase Video Marketing Exposure

Online Video: Art…

Making animated explainer videos is much more of an art than a science. There’s a reason we call the writers, illustrators, animators, and designers who produce these videos “creatives.” Of, course, when we make our explainer videos, we perform deep, detailed analysis of a business or company in order to synthesize it’s core message. The intellectual rigor that goes into developing the right messaging for a 60-90 second video is outstanding.

But at the end of the day, the video itself is a work of art – from the Latin, a work of “skill or craftsmanship”. And that’s important. In order for a video to ring true – to really engage audiences in a meaningful way – the excellence of craft wins out over statistics and engineered slogans.

…and Science

So, from a production standpoint, video = art. However, if you’re a marketer looking to prove that an explainer video actually works – that people are watching and responding to it – it won’t do to simply stop there. You need to know the facts about this work of art and it’s impact on your sales, conversion rate, and brand equity.

That’s where video analytics come in. Video analytics are the data that tell you how many people are watching your video, how they’re watching it, and how much of it they’re watching. This information allows you to hone in on the sorts of messages, visuals, and storytelling that really stick with your audience, and refine your video marketing strategy for the future.

There are tons of great tools for measuring video analytics. In fact, YouTube and Vimeo now offer analytics for people hosting videos through their platform. However, at Explainify we prefer the Wistia video hosting platform. There are lots of really, really good reasons for hosting your videos through Wistia, but one of the biggest reasons is their great analytics tools.

Related: 10 Reasons Why You Should Host Your Videos On Wistia

5 Analytics You Should Be Looking At

So, what specific measurements should you be paying attention to? Well, the rabbit hole goes pretty deep here. With the right tools, you can find out just about anything you could want to know about how people are experiencing your video – even how many times they’re minimizing your video while completing other tasks.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves! For now, we’ll take a look at five basic video analytics that can help improve your video marketing efforts.

1. Unique Viewers

The first thing you’ll want to know, of course, is how many individual people are actually watching your explainer video. This tells you just how wide your reach is – how many people are actually hearing your message. This is important because you of course want your site visitors to engage with your video and hear your story.

But this stat can also tell you how many people are not unique visitors. Some of your viewers may be returning to watch your video multiple times. If you’re getting enough repeat views, that may mean you’ve got some seriously dedicated viewers who love what you’re doing. If that’s the case, you need to think about making more video to provide these folks with even more great content.

2. Play Rate

Another great bit of data you should know, the play rate of your video, is simply the percentage of people visiting your site (or wherever the video is located) who actually choose to watch your video. This is huge, because you want people to watch. When people watch your video, they stay on your site longer, and they’re significantly more likely to make a purchase afterward. So if people aren’t clicking “play,” that’s a problem.

Related: 3 Ways to Make a Video Your Customers Will Actually Care About

If your play rate is low, there are a couple of simple solutions. First, you may need to change your video’s thumbnail, the still-frame image that people see before they watch your video. If this thumbnail isn’t enticing enough, people will find something more interesting to do.

Secondly, you may be dealing with placement issues. Where is your video located? Is it at the bottom of your landing page? Or is it at the top of your landing page, but so small you can hardly see it? Make sure that your video window is front and center of your webpage, and people will watch.

3. Time Spent

Once you know how many people are noticing and watching your video, you want to know how much of the video people are actually watching. On Wistia, this is your video engagement. How is the average viewer interacting with your explainer video? Are they watching the whole thing? Are they only watching 30% of your video?

This one is important because it can tell you some really vital information. For one thing, it let’s you know whether or not people are actually interested in your video once it starts playing, or if it’s just failing to hold their attention. If the average time spent on your video is low, you’re probably not reaching your audience in a meaningful way. This could also be a sign that your video is too long, and you need to find ways to condense your message into a shorter format.

4. Drop-Off Point

Related to time spent, the drop-off point is a place in your video where viewership plummets significantly. Again, this could be because your video is too long, but it’s also possible that you’ve either a) said enough for your audience to get your message, or b) confused the heck out of them. Look at these points carefully to determine why you’ve lost so much of your audience at one spot, and adjust accordingly.

Related: Why You’re Not Educating Your Audience Right (and 4 Ways to Start)

5. Completion Rate

And last, but certainly not least, is your video’s completion rate. This number represents the percentage of viewers who not only click on and watch your video, but do so from beginning to end. Naturally, you’ll want to know how many people are sticking around to see the end of your video, because this is generally the point at which you offer your audience a call to action, where they will hopefully heed the call, take the next step, and move further down the sales funnel.

Like I said earlier, there are countless more analytics to study to better understand your audience’s experience with your video. But these five are a great place to start. Take the time to learn how people are watching your video, and you’ll be able to refine your message, develop your explainer video strategy, and ultimately tell a story that sticks.

Now, hop to it!

Ready for Great Video Marketing? Click Here.