A Crash Course in Video Monetization for Publishers

A Crash Course in Video Monetization for Publishers

With all the focus on video as the key to social and online strategy, one question often lingers for publishers and media companies: where’s the money? Thankfully, there are a variety of ways to pursue monetization on the backs of your video efforts, both on social and elsewhere. Let’s take a look at the basics of four proven ways to craft a revenue source from all those hours of video.

Ads tied to social video

There are many options for tying ads to social video content. But while these types of ads are very common, they are also present the most convoluted options for publishers. Depending on your network of choice, pre-roll, post-roll, and even mid-roll ads may be available.

YouTube easily has the most robust ad options, allowing not only for pre-, post-, and mid-roll ads, but also built-in features for pop-up advertisements and clickthroughs. If you have a healthy viewership on your YouTube channel, you should be investigating these options to increase your revenue stream.

Options on other networks are more hit and miss. Facebook has strict rules about tying ads to videos, but is rolling out mid-roll ads for videos longer than 90 seconds. Twitter offers options for pre-roll ads, but no pop-up, post-, or mid-roll ads tied to videos.

The rules and offerings on social are also constantly shifting, alongside viewer habits and desires. Pay attention to what new ad options develop and how they might fit into your revenue strategy.

Branded social content

Branded video (sponsored content) presents the opportunity to monetize video content through partnerships with brands and marketers. These videos aren’t ads for a particular brand, product, or service, but are rather sponsored by (and my feature) them.

The root of the partnership is your own audience and content-style. The partnering entity must have an interest in reaching the same folks you reach and the partnership must be sensibly on-brand (for you, as well as them!)

Remember that branded content is still your content. It should on-brand, on-message, and tailored to your audience. There’s just a sponsored interest behind it and it is through that sponsorship that your revenue comes.

On-site ads

Most publishers and media companies, of course, don’t see social as the exclusive outlet for their video content. Instead, social presence drives traffic to their own sites, where video continues to play a crucial role. On-site ads can be one of the best sources of revenue for publishers with high traffic sites.

Whether hosting your own videos on-site or utilizing a third-party player, there are robust options for attaching ads. Pre-roll, post-roll, mid-roll and pop-ups are all on the table.

Additionally, video drives SEO, meaning pages with video show up higher in search results. That means even ads outside of your videos on the same page – such as banner and display ads – will show a higher return when placed alongside video content.

Syndicate your content

Finally, you might consider syndication. For publishers who are creating a lot of video, this can be a great opportunity to get your content seen by more people and to create a revenue stream.

Syndication requires engaging with a third-party distributor who pushes your content out to all manner of places, from media sites to social networks. They sell ad-space in the video stream and split the revenue with you.

The key is to find a distributor whose target outlets align with your ideal audience and work with them to zero in on that audience.

Need more information?

Download the Publisher’s Guide to Video Monetization to find more ways publishers pull revenue from online video. The guide also includes the results of an industry-wide survey on the ways publishers are tackling video monetization in 2017, including their plans for the future and the challenges they wrestle with. Download the guide today.

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