Posted October 1, 2008 10:10 am by with 17 comments

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As marketers, we often hear discussions about making a video "go viral." Some claim to be experts in viral marketing, while others debunk the concept claiming you can’t make a "viral video." Well, thanks to YouTube’s new Hot Spots, you can at least figure out which parts of your video are popular and which parts send viewers running for the exits.

Here’s how Google explains Hot Spots:

The Hot Spots tab in Insight plays your video alongside a graph that shows the ups-and-downs of viewership at different moments within the video. We determine "hot" and "cold" spots by comparing your video’s abandonment rate at that moment to other videos on YouTube of the same length, and incorporating data about rewinds and fast-forwards. So what does that mean? Well, when the graph goes up, your video is hot: few viewers are leaving, and many are even rewinding on the control bar to see that sequence again. When the graph goes down, your content’s gone cold: many viewers are moving to another part of the video or leaving the video entirely.

And here’s how it looks:

YouTube Hot Spots is an addition to the recent rollout of its Insight Dashboard. As marketers get to grips with it, expect to see more cute kittens, bikini-babes, and Soulja Boy–the perfect recipe for a "viral" video, right?

  • This is a cool addition to the Dashboard Insight in Youtube 🙂

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  • Adi

    It’s always good to get information on how campaigns are working so this should be a good tool for marketers to analyse the effectiveness of their videos.

    If nothing else it should provide more of a consensus on the kind of topics that prove popular and the most popular video lengths etc.

  • I think it’s a great idea for various people looking to track their campaigns on YouTube but what is the percentage of people that will truly benefit from this feature?

    Also I’d like to see more ideas of how they plan to monetize their site.

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  • I think the tool is just perfect. It is the very addition we need for the Dashboard Insight in You tube.

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  • YouTube seems to be a great way to get some serious traffic at the moment, I made a video a few weeks back and its got 50k views, and I;m not getting about 100UVs a day coming to my site (which I have in the description of my video). Have you made any money out of YouTube yet?

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  • This is a great addition to the youtube dash board, its always good to see the videos that go viral

  • Definitely love to see YouTube Insight data. It’s great for discovery and viralness to see the latest watch trends.

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  • Great way to analyze videos and will more than likely help marketers improve their messages. I can’t see it doing much for regular viewers, unless the video is long..but?

  • Thanks Andy for this insight I probably would not have noticed this feature in my dash board without you pointing it out I think its so needed knowing whats happening to a video you have put out there in cyberspace any tool thats show you the way to a home run is cool in my book its up to every user to utilize out of the Box Tools for Technical and Creative stats to use them or not I for one will be thats for sure…

    All my best to you and your YouTube Hot Spots
    Regards Phillip Skinner

  • the additional information’ll help, i’m sure. great way to get a better sense for how an audience responds to a particular video.

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  • PS3

    I’m on YouTube right now and hadn’t noticed it. I tend to focus on the video I am watching!

  • Wow, now that’s quite a great feature they’ve added there. It will definately help in setting the requirements of a good video as the producers will get to know exactly what it is that viewers want to see on a video of any kind, especially in the music industry. So I guess this is a Google and YouTube joint venture?

  • This is a great idea and am sure that the quality of what is on offer will improve.

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  • I agree, the analytics aspect of this is fantastic…now I just need to get over my video fear.

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  • Wont the starting of the website always be a hot spot ?

  • Sex Sells. Betcha Bikini Babes are one of the top hot spots….