Geoff-RamseyI interviewed Geoff Ramsey, CEO an co-Founder of the Internet research firm eMarketer to ask his opinion: what has been the effect of video on the search experience and search marketing? Usually you don’t expect someone the head of an major research and analytics firm to answer with the adjective of “magical,” but read the article and you can understand his enthusiasm.

The Great Video Convergence

Last week, Ooyala co-sponsored a webinar with eMarketer titled, “The Great Video Convergence.”  The stated purpose of the webinar was to share an understanding of the evolving state of video and how revenue models and reach are “shaping up”.

The “integral” connection between video and search

“There’s a ton of data of data people who see online video that are more likely to take some kind of action, like doing a search.”

Says Geoff, who suggestions that such data should present a revelation to brand marketers.

Improving the search experience, and search marketing, with video

Geoff went on to say that brand marketers have spent way too much time focusing on search and search marketing (SEO/PPC) as solely a text model. “What drives people to search is brand advertising.” And, “with online video, brands can do a much better jog of story-telling.” Thus, Geoff concludes that a much better platform than text for delivering the brand marketers message is online video.

“People who have been exposed to online video are going to be more likely to take certain action, and that would definitely include search. That’s the integral connection.” He says.

Geoff added that search engines’ gravitation to showing more video links (including in-stream video) in search results will lead to much more involvement and engagement by the consumer, which is exactly what brand marketers need to achieve. For that reason, “video and search are a magical combination.” Says Geoff.

Video stats

  • Increased penetration ­– Around 3/4ths of all Internet users today are watching video. eMarketer’s own research shows online video users averages around 72% for 2009, with the figure growing to 75% in 2010, and 85% by 2013. “No area today is growing as fast as online video” says Geoff.
  • Short form dominates – according to Nielsen Networks, 83% of online video viewers watch short form videos. (“Short form” is a subjective term, but Geoff believes it to include videos topping off around 10-11 minutes.)
  • Increased business deployment – according to several research reports from 2008-2009 (below), about half of all US companies are deploying some form of online video for their business.


  • Budget shift – According to a survey by the American Advertising Federation, 43% of U.S. marketers expect to shift 20% or more of their TV budgets to online video by 2010. (The AAF survey attributes the spending growth of online video to more professional content, larger increase in viewing hours, improved technology, improved targeting, and better formats and creative.)
  • Higher engagement – online video viewers are more engaged versus those watching television. To take a quote from BBDO America’s David Lubars: “The way the world is headed is voluntary engagement. The work has to be a magnet.”

Presentation resources

emarketer-logoYou can download slides of the presentation, or watch the webinar online above. (Note: the online recording cuts off after the first 47 minutes, so most of the Q&A is unavailable for listening to.)