Are you confused about the difference between video marketing and advertising? Don’t worry about it, most people are. Despite being involved with broadcast and video production for over eleven years I still get confused and need to think about it. There are still grey areas and huge overlaps and these are only becoming less clear as the digital amalgamation continues to strengthen. I wrote a 35,000-word thesis during my Masters year at University about digital convergence and it’s one of the proudest pieces of work I have created because most of my predictions back in 2005 have come to fruition.

Back in 2005 the internet and television/video were two separate entities, as were cell phones. Now the three are intertwined like the roots of a vine tree. Funnily enough, and I didn’t know this at the time, YouTube was registered as a trademark on Valentine’s Day that very year. As digital bandwidth was freed up, 3G, and then 4G, came to prominence allowing, eventually, for the internet to become a reality on our phones. Who would have thought back then when we only had Snake on our phones and the ability to store only ten text messages that we would soon be able to stream live TV. I am slightly digressing here but it was this blurring of lines that greatly affected the more defined lines of advertising and marketing.

Back then video advertising was 100% all about commercials, the ones we see on TV. There would have been very defined entries in advertisers budgets for TV COMMERCIALS. Now given advertising is part of marketing, a company’s drip down budget would look like this:

Marketing->Avertising->TV Commercials/Print/Radio

Imagine a big circle labeled MARKETING. Then within that a smaller circle labeled ADVERTISING. Then within that three smaller circle labeled TV COMMERCIALS, PRINT, RADIO.

Now with the phenomenal rise to prominence of the internet it has resulted in streaming, social media, video sharing, photo sharing, apps, downloading (both legal and illegal) etc. Blend this with digital video production and you have a very integrated and undefined industry for advertising and marketing videos. Before moving on to answer the original question posited in this article, Video Marketing Vs Video Advertising, let me give, in my opinion, a definition of each.

Video Advertising is a video which explicitly highlights a product or service in order to sell it using paid for space, whether it be on terrestrial TV, cable, the gateway to a YouTube video or an electronic billboard.

Video Marketing is any type of video which promotes a brand in any way, shape or form. It might not even sell a product. For example, a video testimonial doesn’t sell anything but it improves a company’s PR (talking about PR as it relates to advertising and marketing is a whole other article).

A great example of a marketing video is the P&G Thank You Mom- Strong: Rio 2016 Olympic Games, I dare you to watch this one and not feel emotional. It is a prime example of branded content. It tells several stories about Olympic athletes and their relationships with their mothers. It does this without any product endorsement until the story has concluded. It’s a genius bit of promotional video production.

So what’s better video advertising or video marketing? It all depends on your companies intent. It’s like asking what’s better, a spoon or a fork? Generally speaking, explicit product or service promotion is better done through video advertising, for everything else video marketing is better. It also depends on budget. Small budget? Then video marketing is better for you. Another consideration is your audience. If you are looking to target teenagers they are more likely to be reached through indirect video marketing.

In conclusion, there are more instances in today’s media saturated and digitally converged world where video marketing works better.

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