Aimlessly browsing the internet? You’ll most likely fall under the spell of attractive and engaging videos. Our curiosity is easily piqued by the wide array of content that’s too enticing to ignore.
Digital video continues to outmaneuver the growth of other media. There’s a need for quality content. The state of videos in Southeast Asia is now more accessible, relatable, and entertaining to consumers.
Predictions about digital videos to present
Let’s rewind for a bit. In 2016, Facebook’s operation head predicted it “will be definitely mobile, it will be probably all video” in the next five years. Also, 82% of global internet traffic is expected from businesses and consumers by 2022.
Presently, the downstream traffic caused by videos alone is around 58% on the internet. Facebook is catching up on YouTube as a video platform while Instagram and Twitter also integrated videos on their platform.
How is Southeast Asia catching up?
According to Consumer Barometer with Google, television is still predominant in Southeast Asian countries like the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, and Thailand. However, the rise of different devices and content types fundamentally changed the video consumption habits in the region.
Audiences now have more control over videos they watch. No need to patiently wait for hours for their favorite programs to start; Exciting and interesting content is available via online streaming sites and social media instantly.
Video consumption trends in Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia is a mobile-first region. Google-Temasek reported 90% of digital users access the internet through mobile and the mobile connectivity in the region got 129% in We Are Social’s Digital 2019 report.
Multi-screen viewing is a big part of the viewing experience, and the region even ranked highest globally among viewers watching movies on tablet in 2015 due to strong digital following for video like movies, how-to shows, comedies, dramas, news, and sports.
The succeeding years proved that there’s no stopping the rise of digital video. Asia Video Industry Report (AVIA) states the growing trend in video consumption in Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand.
- Myanmar: 67% (2016) to 88% (2018) watch video content on mobile. Users watch videos for more than three hours increased from 3% in 2016 to 22% in 2018.
- Vietnam: Online subscription services gained 21% of the audience due to a large mix of content and good quality video. Women are watching online content for more than 3 hours than men (11% vs 3%).
- Thailand: Online video consumption in 2017 from mobile devices increased from 90% to 98%, with 42% of respondents saying they watched for over one hour in 2018 compared to 33% in 2017.
Digital videos accelerated in the region due to constant connectivity, convenience, and control over video consumption. Paid subscriptions are advancing but people still prefer searching for alternative free and quality content. Viewers from a number of Asian countries even visit piracy websites to access video content despite malware risks.
Video Marketing in Southeast Asia
The age of abundant information increased the value of videos.
A video manages to include tons of information in a short time, stays longer in our minds, and is more engaging compared to other media. Hence, video marketing is a smart strategy.
Use different channels to market to SEA audiences
Audiences’ dynamic viewing habits are opportunities for marketers to innovate and showcase creativity while giving valuable content. Various platforms are used in different ways:
- YouTube for video advertisements – Southeast Asian video marketing is leading the APACS most seen ads for 2017 and some SEA countries are still on the top in 2018. The videos have diverse lengths and styles. They also have distinctly local flavors: storytelling tactics, local languages, and tunes that are both entertaining and catchy.
- Real-time content in social media channels – Real-time content is prevalent in media channels like Periscope, Facebook live, and Instagram live stories. Adidas Indonesia used Periscope to search for the country’s most talented football player.
- Platforms with temporary content – Temporary content is gaining popularity. Indonesia ranked as the highest user of Instagram and IG story in Southeast Asia. Tokopedia an Indonesian marketplace, used IG story in Indonesia for their campaign and reached 11% larger audience, increased app installs by 54% and had a 35% lower cost per install.
- Mobile Friendly video ads – Mobile devices led marketers to create mobile-friendly video advertisements. Tokopedia created a six-second bumper ads which resulted in a massive 22M impression.
Types of videos
Various video types emerged over the years. But what’s next?
- Live streaming is gaining popularity because it engages and retains more audience on different social media channels like Facebook and Instagram.
- 1:1 video or personalized videos are also moving forward as marketers realize the value of lead nurturing and customer communication.
- Search-friendly videos through AI and the use of closed captions.
- 360-degree videos enable viewers to have control over the content, making it a more interactive experience for them.
- Vlogging or video vlogging makes the audience feel more connected to brands and to the vloggers because they see authenticity in it. It also builds a community for like-minded people.
- Internet-delivered or “Over the Top” platforms (OTT) is also gaining popularity among users. It is driven by subscription video on demand (SVOD) and advertising video on demand (AVOD) revenues.
How to leverage video for your business
The Southeast Asian market has diverse preferences. Experiment with your content but make sure you’re offering something valuable to your audiences.
Thinking of using videos for your business?
- Connect through mobile: Southeast Asia is a mobile-first region. Use this connectivity to engage and create accessible videos for your target market.
- Local content: It’s no secret that relevance is the key to gaining more audience. A taste of locality can spice up the marketing strategies of brands in Southeast Asia.
Pepsi’s campaign here was on point. Bursting the “digital bubble” to reconnect with family while enjoying Tết. The festival here is packaged in a more contemporary way, thus, fitting their target audience: digital natives.
- Research and understand diverse target audiences: Be responsible and sensitive to different audiences when creating ads. This ad from Burger King elicited mixed emotions from their target audience in Vietnam:
This faced backlash in Vietnam and Burger King was accused of racism. A similar situation happened to Dolce and Gabbana where they had issued an apology after showing an ad where a Chinese model eats Italian food using chopsticks.
- Video ads to engage your audience: Videos have the highest engagement rate in social media in Southeast Asia so use it to create an emotional bond to improve brand identity in the long run. Try creating videos for holidays and special events like Mother’s Day. Here’s a short but empowering ad from McDonald’s that tugs the heartstrings of the viewers:
- Utilize different channels to promote your video advertisements: Different channels has its own advantages and disadvantages. Know what your target market uses and make sure your strategy fits that platform.
Digital Fraud in Videos
Video content piracy and fake clicks for ads are prevalent in Southeast Asia. People either fall as victims or they intentionally breed piracy. Smitten with free content and cheaper fees, consumers become one of the propagators of piracy.
According to AVIA’s report, Singapore, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Thailand are top consumers of piracy and piracy sites:
- Singapore ranked 9th in the world for the most number of visits to piracy sites per capita
- 14% of Singaporeans admitted that they access content through piracy
- 28% of Philippine consumers use illicit Streaming Devices or ISDs and 13% of them cancelled their subscription to legal services
- 45% in Thailand uses ISDs and 21% cancelled legal subscriptions
- 25% of Malaysians use modified TV set-up boxes to watch pirated content
Action against frauds
Fighting fraud is essential for the video content industry to prosper and retain the trust of consumers. Online advertising has a higher degree of accountability compared to traditional advertising due to data gathered from users. The following ways can be effective in combating piracy:
- Enforcement in taking down live stream piracy in different channels. Facebook and Periscope used to take down pirated streams. These two sites ranked the highest for take down speed
- Embedding OTT watermark identifies the pirated video and its origin even if logos are removed. The stream can be taken down for copyright infringement once it’s identified.
- Site blocking is another solution for fighting fraud for live streaming videos and this includes piracy sites streaming videos.
- Third party tools may also be used to address the issue for video advertisements.
Where are videos heading?
Digital videos in Southeast Asia are firmly established especially now with easier access and more content to choose from. Fraud and piracy are frequent but the benefits consumers get from watching videos outweigh the risks for audience.
Marketers should utilize the preference of the human mind towards videos. We’re more receptive to it because it requires less time and effort to consume in comparison with other media. Since brands are intangible, engaging audiences through videos helps the audience to retain more information and have longer brand recall.
Looking forward to what’s next? It’s exciting to see how marketers will explore various video types in the following years. But whatever’s in store for videos, it’s best to find a way to sustain the demand for videos and to give consumers a flexible viewing options that fits their needs.