The power of recommendations: Consumers ‘enjoy shared video ads more’


Social recommendations have a positive effect on a consumer’s enjoyment and recall of video ads, according to a new study. The white paper, from social video advertising platform Unruly Media looked at social ad effectiveness. The study surveyed online video viewers aged 18-34 across four social video campaigns from Guinness,Coca-Cola, Unilever’s Cornetto, and Energizer Batteries to determine the impact of peer recommendations.


“Social video is a powerful format for engaging consumers. If a brand creates great video content and makes it easy to share, it will see impressive results across the entire purchase funnel,” said Unruly COO Sarah Wood.

The key findings of the white paper are listed below:

•Video enjoyment increased purchase intent by 97% and brand association by

•Enjoyment of the video rose by 14% among viewers who had viewed following a recommendation

•Brand recall and brand association rose 7% among viewers who had been recommended the video versus viewers who found it by browsing

There was a 14% increase in the number of people who enjoyed the video following a recommendation versus those who had discovered it by browsing. Moreover, a recommendation reduced the number of people who did not enjoy the video by 41%.

Viewer enjoyment of branded video is important because it has a direct impact on key brand metrics. Viewers who enjoyed the video they watched demonstrated 139% higher brand association, 97% higher purchase intent, higher brand favorability, and higher brand recall than their counterparts who did not enjoy the video.


68% of viewers who had browsed to the video correctly recalled the brand when prompted, compared to 73% of viewers who had arrived at the video following a recommendation. This 7% uplift suggests that video viewers are in a more receptive and attentive frame of mind following a recommendation, allowing brands that produce and distribute social content to benefit from closer communication with their audiences.


Recommendations caused a 7% increase in brand association. Agreement with key brand statements increased from 41% among viewers who had browsed to the video to 44% among viewers who seen the video following a recommendation.

This result reinforces the above suggestion that recommendations make viewers more receptive to brand messaging. There was also a drop of more than one fifth in the number of respondents that disagreed with key brand statements. Recommendations have a large role to play for brands, says the report, in changing off-message perceptions among their audiences as well as in actively cultivating on-message perceptions.


Viewers of the social videos tested went on to perform a multitude of brand or video related actions. Notably, 49% of viewers purchased the advertised product within three days of the view. 38% of viewers spoke to someone in person about the video, showing a social video view to stimulate real life conversation. 9% of users searched for the brand, and 4% of users searched for products of that type. Social video viewing is having an effect across all aspects of the purchase funnel, concludes the report.


The report concludes by noting that the power of social video lies in the recommendation to view content. This recommendation comes from peers in social media environments, and from authoritative blogs and news sources covering advertiser content editorially.

The impact of the recommendation on consumers is considerable:

•Viewers are more likely to enjoy a video when it has been recommended than when encountered through browsing (14% higher enjoyment)

•Viewers are more likely to recall a brand name when the social video has been recommended than when encountered through browsing (7% higher recall)

•Viewers are more likely to engage with an ad’s messages when the social has been recommended than when encountered through browsing (10% higher brand association)

View the white paper in full here

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