Corporate Eye

Research Shows Consumers Want Online Video from Brands

online video brandNew research from Digitas and Harris Interactive reveals that 46% of U.S. online video viewers are at least somewhat likely to look up a brand or product when it’s mentioned in an online video they’re viewing. Similarly, 49% of people who follow brands on social networks are at least somewhat likely to watch videos published by those brands to learn more.

According to Stephanie Sarofian, managing director of Digitas’ brand content unit, Third Act, “Investing in online video is no longer optional. Consumers are hungry for online content and ready to take this journey with brands. Today’s viewer isn’t just passively sitting and watching — they’re sharing, talking, clicking, and testing.”

The March 2012 survey of 2,211 Americans 18 years and older also revealed that 63% of respondents have viewed online content while they’re watching television. However, just 27% have actually looked at online content related to a show they were watching while they were watching it.

Still, that’s nearly one out of every three respondents and reflects a growing trend in viewing diverse content on multiple screens simultaneously. For example, consumers watch television while using their smartphones or tablet devices. Just last week, I published an article here on the Corporate Eye blog that discussed results from a recent Nielsen study that showed just how far this trend has already grown in terms of stealing eyes from television commercials.

Despite the willingness to watch online video from brands that consumers have demonstrated, brands are still struggling to create the right kind of video content. The Digitas survey found that consumers are looking for entertaining and informative online video content. One out of two respondents to the survey claimed that they usually share online videos that they like with at least three of their friends and online connections. This is a powerful word-of-mouth marketing opportunity that brands which are creating online video content that adds value to consumers’ lives are seizing.

The study also found that while online video viewing and sharing is still more common among younger audiences, the 55+ audience is not lagging as far behind as you might think. However, women in the 55+ demographic are far more likely to watch and share branded online video content then men in the same age range.

It’s safe to assume that these statistics will continue to increase. Has your brand leveraged online video content to connect with consumers yet? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.

Image: Digitas Photos

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.