How to Market Your Film to VOD With Smart Ad Targeting

September 8, 2017 9:00 am | Published by

Karen Abram, svp of entertainment at one2one, saw a problem. There was a ton of data on how movie marketing campaigns drove audiences to theater releases and box office sales. But when it came to VOD (video on demand), she told AdWeek, there was no industry report to be found.

So, Abram and her team set out to discover it for themselves. The data they uncovered, which focuses exclusively on rental VOD sales (those that you might buy via your cable or satellite set-up box – not via Vudu, iTunes, Amazon, etc.), makes for an interesting study.

These rentals accounted for 112 million movie rentals last year – a huge market. As Jamie Power, COO of one2one says, “There’s so much more data out there for studios to use in order to optimize their spend.”

They just don’t know about it.

Until now.

Marketing Your Movie to VOD

Researchers found…

  • 70% of RVOD transactions occur Friday-Sunday
  • Most holidays see a +10% transactional lift (compared to average daily), with some holidays like Labor Day and New Year’s Eve garnering a +100% lift.

Who Is the Typical RVOD Consumer?

one2one named the typical RVOD consumer, “Jennifer.” She is a female aged 25 to 54.

  • She is married – 58% of VOD purchases are married
    • She goes to the movie theater – all movie-going segments over-index; highest being 2-3 times a month.
  • She has Comcast – Comcast has the highest subscriber count and represents the highest transaction share.
  • She will rent a movie within 5 ad exposures – Buy rate doesn’t statistically fluctuate between 1-5 exposures, and an average 90%+ rentals occur by 5 exposures.
  • She rents movies at 8 p.m. on Saturday – 27% of VOD rentals are on Saturday, and 15% of Saturday rentals are at 8 p.m.
  • She rents movies in summer – 30% of 2016’s transactions occurred in June and July.

Applying the Data to Facebook Ads

Pretty interesting, huh? Now, let’s see how that information might apply in a real-world scenario to a Facebook advertising campaign. We could use the data provided in this report/infographic to create an audience set for an ad campaign.

We could target:

  • Females
  • Married
  • Age 25-54
  • Living in the U.S.
  • Watches/buys cable TV

This is a basic audience set that we could modify and test as we observe ad performance and learn more about who’s engaging with the ads.

What else do we know? Well, we find in the report that more than 90% of all rentals will occur by the time the target sees five ads. So, we can pretty much decide that once we’ve shown the person five ads, if they haven’t bought yet, then they’re probably not going to and we’re just wasting our budget. (This is very different from other products, especially bigger ticket purchase items, which might take dozens of ad exposures in order to sell.)

We also know to turn up the volume on our campaigns in the week leading up to a holiday.

Since 27% of VOD rentals occur on Saturday (the majority of those at night), we might want to start running our ads on Wednesday. Consider this sample timeline for our ad campaign:

  • Wednesday: Exposure 1
  • Thursday: Exposure 2
  • Friday a.m.: Exposure 3
  • Friday p.m.: Exposure 4
  • Saturday: Exposure 5

If our target doesn’t buy after the fifth exposure on Saturday, then we can be fairly confident they won’t buy. So, beginning next Wednesday, we start the ad campaign over, excluding all of the audience that’s previously been exposed to our ads, and adjusting the copy, images, and targeting in the coming week based on the top performing ad sets of the previous week.

Pretty cool, right? If you’ve never explored Facebook’s ad targeting options, you might be shocked at how detailed they can get. Check out this post to learn more about all of Facebook’s ad targeting options!

Of course, this idea, while especially relevant to movie marketers interested in the VOD space, can be applied to any business of any size. Check out this post to discover the five easy steps to creating your own Facebook ads. If you aren’t using Facebook ads, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity! We’d love to show you more!

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