As the popularity of video explodes across Asia, video advertising is growing fast too – but marketers need to look beyond simple reach and consider whether viewers are emotionally engaged, an industry figure has warned.

“From a relatively slow start, we are now seeing video as a key medium for advertising,” Phil Townend, APAC chief commercial officer of video ad tech company Unruly, told the recent Video Marketing Strategies conference in Singapore.

“A lot of audiences are much more emotionally engaged with video advertising in Southeast Asia than they may be in other markets,” he reported, “so it really is a good medium for winning hearts and winning minds.”

But it matters where these ads are viewed, he added – whether on premium media with journalistic content, or on non-premium sites. (For more, read WARC’s report: Why premium media drives impact of video ads).

“It’s not just what you make in terms of your ad, it’s where you put it that has a really big impact,” he explained. “Even though Facebook and YouTube may deliver a lot of scale, they may or may not deliver as much consumer engagement.”

One of the reasons they might not is a lack of trust. Unruly’s own research has shown that 61% of people around the world think half of the information they see on social media is fake.

“Not all impressions are born equal,” Townend pointed out. “Audience targeting is important, but premium environments drive brand and business metrics.

“We need to evaluate the role of these different types of media to make the right decision as when we are thinking about our investments.”

Even then, a strategic mix of premium media for video ad campaigns can deliver reach – it’s a myth that this is only achievable on Facebook and Google, Townend said, listing some of the premium publishers that Unruly works with in the region – including Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post and Malaysia’s Star Media Group.

“There are some big names in here," Townend stated. "If you put these together, you can still get big reach.”

Sourced from WARC