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Online Video by the Numbers

As marketers think about where to invest their resources and consider the ROI of different media outlets it's important to consider and understand viewership and adoption patterns online. Recent statistics coming from viewer metric giants Nielsen and comScore reveal some interesting implications for those considering using online video for marketing.

Time Spent on the Internet

Americans continue to spend more time on the internet on their computers, both at work and at home. The month to month increase is around 3% in June 2010, according to Nielsen. While the average total monthly time spent online might not sound like a lot at 56 hours and 37 minutes, that breaks out to nearly 2 hours a day of internet usage on average.

Implications: More and more time spent on the computer means greater potential for exposure and impressions to be made, especially if that translates to more time spent streaming video online.

Number of Videos

Last month, more than 10.2 billion videos were streamed in the US, which represents a 1.3% increase over the month last year, and a 4% jump over the previous month, based on Nielsen's data. If you break that out into the US total population, that ends up amounting to about 33.2 videos per person in the US per month - which is basically a video a day. But taking a closer look at Nielsen's numbers we see that of the 200 million people the online US population, over 144 million people are watching online video, which accounts for nearly three-quarters (72%) of the total US online population. That means US internet video viewers are streaming about 71 videos per month, breaking out to a little over 2 videos a day.

And to put the US data in context with the rest of the world, comScore data suggests that video viewers in Japan watched an average of 158.3 videos in May 2010. That breaks out to about 5 videos per day

Implications: Regardless of how you parse the numbers by month, day, or geography, you have to admit that's a lot of online video streaming each month! What's stopping you from including your videos in that pool of potential content for a ready and willing audience?

Demographics for Video

And it's not just 20-somethings that are watching video online. Nielsen states that Boomers born between 1946-1964 are watching the most video of any demographic category in the United States

Implications: Marketers can't continue assuming that online video appeals only to a very specific, younger demographic. The stats bear out that every target market in the existing internet population is consuming video.

By now you might already be convinced of the power of online video, but your boss might not be. Think about using these figures help back your case about why you need an online video strategy or need to invest in your video marketing efforts.

Sara Marie Watson is Brightcove's Online Video Platform Evangelist. She tweets @smwat