Posted November 7, 2011 8:38 am by with 0 comments

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There is plenty of talk of how the younger generation that has grown up in this hyper digital age. Those who are selling advertising talk about the sheer numbers. How many young people watch video online, how many hours of video they consume and on and on.

That’s fine but advertisers need to know if people respond to ads. A new study shows that the younger the video watcher the less likely they are to be interested in ads.

The study done by Burst Media and reported by eMarketer shows just how people respond to online video ads by age group.

It is important to note that the audience for younger viewers of online video is a much larger percentage of the total number of people in that age group. eMarketer reports

The older web users who are more likely to respond to video ads are less likely overall to watch online video, however. eMarketer estimates that this year, for example, 49% of 55- to 64-year-olds and 30% of those ages 65 and older will watch online video at least monthly. That compares to 87% of 18- to 24-year-olds and 81% of those ages 25 to 34.

So what does this tell marketers? A few things of note.

Despite the larger numbers the younger the viewer the more blind they are to your ad – Everyone is anamored with the behavior of younger Internet users. They are online all the time blah, blah, blah. That’s interesting but as marketers we need to know how they respond to online messaging. Right now, if this study’s numbers have any truth to them it’s not real great. If they are already jaded to you think that will get any less so with age? Not likely.

There is room for growth in the online video area amongst older age groups – With more than 8 out of ten younger demographics already watching online video there is not as much room for growth. It is likely that larger percentages of older people will be viewing online video more since not even half of those 55-64 and about one third of those older are currently watching there is room for bringing new folks on board and maybe even helping mold their online video viewing habits as they do.

Older video viewers are more a marketer’s dream, maybe – If the numbers are truly growing for older folks and their online video viewing then those with products to target them should be chomping at the bit to get in front of them. The numbers especially favor those targeting older men.

Unfortunately, one has to wonder just how much of that response is to ads in the Viagra and Cialis etc category as there is the perception of anonymity amongst these online users (whether anonymity is real is another argument for another post). If they click on that but don’t give a rip about deodorant ads or whatever, then the groups may not be any more valuable than younger folks who ignore the ads completely.

If people are watching videos maybe marketers should be producing them and not just advertising in them – If people are going to be inconsistent in how they respond to advertising in videos then maybe marketers need to get wise and concentrate on making videos that are watchable thus REALLY having the attention of their target.

No matter how you look at online video it is becoming more and more critical to the online marketing mix. No longer is it a luxury or a bonus play. It really needs to be used to its utmost to make sure that there is something with your message out there for everyone. And it looks like nearly everyone wants more video.

Are you using video to its fullest? Are you making sure that you are in front of your audience the way that they want to see you?