Understanding Video Metrics and Analytics: A Marketer’s Guide

So you want to understand how your video content is performing. But with so many different metrics and insights available at your fingertips, where do you start? And what do all these different metrics mean, anyway?

Getting to grips with video metrics will allow you to track the success of your video content. This in turn can help empower you to improve your video strategy. At Blueprint Film, we’re experienced in measuring our videos’ performances and advising clients in measuring theirs.

In this guide, we explain the different video metrics and how they relate to different goals (with tips on meeting these goals). We then break down the video metrics available on different video and social media platforms.

DEFINING KEY VIDEO METRICS:

  • Views/view count: how many views your video has received
  • Impressions: number of times your video has loaded or appeared on a page
  • Play rate: rate of page viewers who play your video (views divided by impressions)
  • Video watch time: average time users have spent watching your video
  • Video completion rate: rate of viewers who completed watching a video
  • Clicks/Click-Through Rate: number of clicks/percentage of viewers that click on the CTA in your video
  • Engagements: interactions (likes, comments, shares, etc)

WHICH METRICS MATTER TO YOU?

Now that you understand what the main video metrics mean, let’s look at deciding which video metrics you should focus on. Keeping track of every video metric available to you can take up a lot of time. Instead, prioritise the metrics that align the most to your video marketing goals. After all, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to measuring your success.

IMPRESSIONS (VISIBILITY & TARGETING)

Impressions might not seem like a useful metric by itself. But if your video is getting considerably fewer impressions than expected, this can be a sign to change your keyword or targeting strategy. You should also ensure that your video meets the platform requirements. For instance, look out for any copyright issues or prohibited content.

VIEW COUNT & PLAY RATE (AWARENESS)

View count is a metric that all video platforms provide. However, there is no internet-wide standard for how views are counted. This makes it difficult to compare views across platforms. So make sure that you are aware of how views are counted differently on different platforms (see guide).

Play rate sometimes gets confused with views. But play rate is the rate of page visitors who play a video. Platforms calculate it by dividing the number of views by the number of impressions. As a result, it is useful for measuring the performance of videos embedded on websites and landing pages.

One general tip for awareness metrics like views and play rate is to use eye-catching thumbnails and descriptive titles. Also, be sure to distribute/share your video across different channels (social media, relevant webpages, email campaigns). And direct users to watch your video using a clear CTA

WATCH TIME & COMPLETION RATE (CONSIDERATION)

Video watch time and completion rate reflect whether your video content can hold your audience’s attention. As such, it is an important metric for brand consideration and audience retention. It also features as a ranking factor for many algorithms, including YouTube.

To improve watch time and completion rates, be sure to set and fulfil viewer expectations. So keep your videos relevant and on-topic. This means cutting out any unnecessary or overly-long parts. Also, avoid overloading viewers with too much information, as this can cause them to lose focus and stop watching.

ENGAGEMENTS — LIKES, COMMENTS (SENTIMENT)

Why might you choose to measure video engagements (likes/reactions, comments, etc.)? Because these metrics reflect clear audience feedback on your content. If a video is getting more likes than usual, that reflects a positive sentiment from your audience. The number of comments you attract shows how much your content is engaging your audience and building a community. Also, engagements are also used as ranking factors in online algorithms.

VIDEO METRICS BY PLATFORM:

YOUTUBE VIDEO METRICS

Out of all the platforms listed here, YouTube offers the most in-depth video analytics you can access without paying. Here’s a breakdown of some of the analytics available to you:

  • Reach: impressions, CTR, views, unique viewers, traffic sources (external, search, suggested videos, playlists)
  • Engagement: watch time, average view duration, audience retention (intro, top moments, spikes, dips)
  • Audience: returning viewers, unique viewers, subscribers, audience demographics (age & gender)

You can find individual video metrics by going to your video page and pressing the ‘ANALYTICS’ button (underneath the like bar). To see the metrics for your whole channel, head to YouTube Studio, then select the ‘Analytics’ tab from the menu on the left. (If using mobile, download the YouTube Studio app.)

FACEBOOK VIDEO METRICS

Facebook is not a platform dedicated solely to video content like Youtube. But it still provides users with an advanced array of video analytics. This makes sense, given that over 500 million people watch videos on Facebook every day.

To see overall performance metrics, head to the video section of insights on Facebook Creator Studio. (This is the middle tab on the Facebook Creator Studio app) For individual video stats, scroll down to find a list of your published videos and select one of them. (On the app, go to the ‘Posts’ tab and filter by ‘Videos’.)

Individual video performance:

  • Video views (3 seconds or more)
  • Total reach
  • Average engagement
  • Post clicks
  • Likes, comments and shares
  • 30-second views
  • Audience retention

Overall page performance:

  • Minutes viewed
  • 1-minute/3-second video views
  • Video engagement
  • Top videos
  • Net followers
  • Returning viewers
  • Complete views
  • Where views are coming from
  • Average watch time

INSTAGRAM VIDEO METRICS

Compared to platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo, the video metrics provided by Instagram are rather basic. Also, you can only access these metrics via the Instagram app. Hopefully, as video becomes more of a focal point of their platform, Instagram will start providing more detailed metrics. But for now, it does a good job of providing the basics.

For individual video insights, go to your post and tap the ‘View Insights’ button underneath it. For an overview of your video content, go to your profile, tap ‘Insights’ and scroll down to ‘Videos’. From there, you can view and sort your video content by the different metrics.

Instagram video metrics:

  • Video views (3 seconds or more)
  • Content interactions (likes, comments, saves, shares)
  • Number of accounts reached (and how many are followers/non-followers)
  • Profile activity (visits, follows, call button taps, email button taps)
  • Audience retention & average % watched
  • Number of impressions (and from where — home, hashtags, profile, other)

TWITTER VIDEO METRICS

Twitter provides a similar level of video analytics to Instagram. But unlike Instagram, a lot of these metrics can be accessed on desktop devices. To view video metrics for individual tweets, go to your Tweet, scroll down and select the ‘View Tweet activity’ button.

Twitter also provides metrics for overall video activity for your profile. To access this from your desktop, first, go to analytics.twitter.com. Then find the ‘More’ tab and select ‘Videos’. (Twitter analytics currently are not available from the mobile app.)

Individual Tweet video metrics:

  • Impressions
  • Media views (video is watched in 50% view for 2 seconds or more, or is clicked/expanded/muted)
  • Engagements — likes, retweets, replies, clicks
  • Detail expands (times people viewed Tweet details)
  • New followers
  • Profile visits
  • Link clicks

Overall video activity metrics:

  • Total number of video views
  • Total minutes viewed
  • Average minutes viewed per day
  • Viewer retention
  • Total engagements
  • Video completion rate

LINKEDIN VIDEO MARKETING

LinkedIn differs from the other platforms mentioned here in that it does not provide overall account/page video metrics. So if you want to know this, you will have to work it out yourself. Another thing to consider is that it offers different metrics for profile videos and company page videos. But LinkedIn does provide a metric not offered by any other platform: the job titles of viewers.

Profile video metrics:

  • Minutes watched
  • Video views (3 seconds or more)
  • Reactions, comments, shares
  • Number of viewers
  • Titles of viewers
  • Locations of viewers

Company page video metrics:

  • Video views
  • Impressions
  • Clicks & Click-Through-Rate
  • Reactions, comments, shares
  • Engagement rate
  • Follows (sponsored only)

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Blueprint Film

Film Production Company | London + Lincoln Studios | Commercial, Charity and Event Video Production Services | Feature Films