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Best Practices for Online Video Advertisers Revealed

Comprehensive Analysis of Consumer’s Online Behavior Sets New Benchmarks for Placement, Length and Frequency of Online Video Advertising

PodZinger (, the world’s most powerful audio and video search engine and online advertising network, today announced the results of its proprietary research into consumer behavior and online video advertising viewing preferences. The study’s key findings reveal that not only will consumers tolerate advertisements that appear during their search for online audio and video content, they willingly accept that short 10 to 15 seconds ads are “part of doing business” on the Web. PodZinger’s research findings underscore the need for brands and marketers to view online advertising as a new and distinct initiative, not merely as an extension of paid text advertising or television advertising. This research was conducted prior to the recent launch of PodZinger’s video advertising platform to ensure consumers would be receptive to advertisements on the popular search engine’s site.

PodZinger’s research examined consumers’ attitudes, usage and acceptance of online video advertising. To gauge viewer reaction to the length and format of video ads, PodZinger commissioned market research firm Pathfinder Innovation to conduct one-on-one interviews in three major U.S. markets including Cambridge, Mass., Chicago and Los Angeles. In addition to featuring a comprehensive set of in-depth questions, consumers were presented demonstration sites to gauge their reaction to the length and format of video ads. The research revealed that consumers prefer 10 to 15 second ads in comparison to the typical 30 second television commercial. However, many expressed concern about the frequency of video ads, which, unlike banner ads, were considered “annoying” if repeated too often. Almost three-quarters of respondents viewed search-relevant advertisements positively and many viewed this as a unique level of Web-site personalization.

These results, in combination with aggregated consumer behavior statistics for online content, further emphasize the importance of streamlined, targeted, non-intrusive video advertisements. By recording what audio and video content is played most frequently and examining the vast library of searchable content on PodZinger, the company captures unprecedented information, providing advertisers an in-depth view of what content consumers are interested in most. PodZinger also examined behavior patterns of consumers on to set the baseline for consumer behavior, discovering that:

  • Consumers typically play only 15 percent of an entire online video or audio, which are 7.5 minutes and 22 minutes in length, respectively.
  • Consumer attention span for online video is much shorter than audio – one minute vs. three minutes on average.
  • Consumers are more likely to play content online than they are to download it by a factor of almost 6 to 1 (5.7 to 1).
  • Of all the categories tracked by PodZinger, five of these, including entertainment, technology, news and politics, music and sports, represent approximately 85 percent of all online activity (Table 1). Additionally, online activity does not track to the volume of content available, e.g. entertainment represents 36 percent of all online video play, but only 6 percent of available video.

Most Played Categories of Online Content, Sept. 2006 – Table 1

Audio % of Total Plays Avg. Play Time (min) Video % of Total Plays Avg. Play Time (min)
Technology 24% 3.16 Entertainment 36% 0.92
Music 18% 1.93 Technology 24% 1.29
Entertainment 18% 4.55 News & Politics 15% 1.05
News & Politics 15% 2.70 Music 8% 1.52
Sports 8% 31.6 Sports 5% 0.85

Through speech-to-text technology, PodZinger automatically classifies all audio and video content and is able to tailor advertising based on this information. By recording the length and frequency that audio and video content is played, PodZinger is able to identify which content is more valuable based on the actual usage aggregated from consumers. Through the combination of data analysis algorithms of video advertisers and PodZinger’s classification technology, advertisers, for the first time, are able to deliver relevant brand messaging in online video and audio content.

“With Internet video consumption surging, advertisers are clamoring for a best-in-class solution for delivering branded and relevant online messages,” said Alex Laats, CEO of PodZinger. “To accomplish that, it is essential to develop a deeper understanding of what consumers are watching and listening. Our technology uniquely allows PodZinger to connect advertisers to consumers based on consumer intent, and the response in the marketplace has been overwhelming.”

About PodZinger
PodZinger is the leading audio and video search engine and advertising network for brands, content providers and consumers. With PodZinger, consumers are able to find the most relevant content, content creators can monetize their online audio and video assets and advertisers can more effectively deliver their brand messages.

PodZinger, based in Cambridge, Mass., was recognized as the Best Web 2.0 Application in 2006 by the Massachusetts Innovation and Technology Exchange. PodZinger can be found at and through its network of affiliates.

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