SINGAPORE: Brands need to rethink their approach to mobile video as Asia's content landscape changes, a regional expert believes.

According to Ratan Malli, head of strategy and analytics for J. Walter Thompson Asia-Pacific, the sea-change in consumption habits will require brands to reassess their video strategies.

In an exclusive piece for Warc, Six tips to optimize video for mobile viewing in Asia, Malli reveals that more than half of all video content is now being viewed online in Asia, and particularly on mobile devices – a conclusion which reflects findings from the recently released Warc Asian Strategy Report , where online video was found to be among the fastest growing content mediums for advertisers in the region.

Though investment is increasing, brands are still lagging behind when it comes to optimizing their content. Despite mobile emerging as the dominant platform for viewing video, content formats have not evolved at the same pace.

According to TubeMogul, completion rates for pre-roll videos on mobile are significantly lower (45%) than for desktop (79%), and South East Asia's emerging markets provide particular issues around slow loading times and expensive mobile data plans which sees many consumers reluctant to view content.

Malli recommends six key ways in which brands can optimize their video content for Asia's mobile first landscape, and includes strategies to combat high rates of dropout and sluggish bandwidth speeds.

The piece also recommends a way forward on vertical content formats and achieving an audio-visual balance.

In Asia, mobile content is often consumed on the move and in public situations – while commuting or in public wifi hotspots, for example – where ambient noise can make it more difficult to hear an ad's voiceover. This requires a different approach to how a brand may communicate its message visually, as opposed to in a soundtrack.

Malli also recommends that integrating mobile video with phones' other features such as location, click to call, GPS/maps or other specialized apps can help increase viewer engagement and conversion.

Warc subscribers can read more here on optimizing mobile video content in Asia. They can also read about wider regional trends in What to expect in South and South East Asia in 2016.

Data sourced from Warc