While many US publishers are pivoting to video in large numbers, the same cannot be said of UK publishers who site various reasons including smaller market, fewer VC-backed publishers and comparatively less reliance on Facebook as some of the reasons they haven’t completely crossed over to video.
“Pivot to video” is a term that was coined to show shift from text based creators to video specialists. This catch phrase particularly started taking hold last year with popular publishing houses including MTV News, Fox Sports, Mic, Vocativ and Mashable laying off their writers in order to focus their ad spend on video. They argued that people want to watch more video, and with display advertising stagnating, they stood a better chance of making revenue from video’s higher CPMs.
Meanwhile in the UK, while video is a growing format, its popularity is not at the expense of other formats. Key reasons for this is for one, UK has fewer venture-backed media companies that are looking to corner themselves into inflated media expectations, on the other hand there is relatively less dependence on Facebook and a smaller video ad market.
“The structure and the mentality for VC-backed companies is different. VCs can hedge their bets and invest in many companies on the next big thing, knowing that only a small fraction will succeed,” said Jamie Bolding, founder of Jungle Creations. “VCs talk about making money in five years time. In the U.K., it’s about survival: With less funding, there’s more requirement to earn revenue now.”
The U.K. video ad spend, which includes programmatically traded video, branded content and video-on-demand formats, will account for 13 percent of total digital ad spend in 2017, according to eMarketer forecasts. In comparison, eMarketer forecasts this figure in the U.S. to be 16 percent.