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3 Essential Tips to Optimize Video Performance

Focus on the right video performance stats to drive your campaigns and better connect with audiences.


The success of a video campaign ultimately depends on your goals and how well you are able to stick to those goals throughout production. Measuring that success is the purpose of video analytics; the views and play rates, clickthroughs, and share rates that reveal how your audience engages with your videos.

These numbers can be used to refine existing video campaigns and help you fine-tune how you share your next piece of video content. 

1. Defining Your Video KPIs

Like optimizing a piece of blog content, optimizing a video or video campaign comes with a lot of review and iterations. What works for one video may not work the same way for another, and many times, the reason why isn’t clear. However, you’ll be able to better understand your video performance if you know what to look for in your video analytics.

Regardless of the video hosting or platform you use (such as YouTube, Vimeo, Wistia, or HubSpot Video), the core KPIs are the same: views/plays, play rate, and actions (clicks, form submissions, etc.). 

Beyond these metrics, and depending on the platform you’re using to share your videos, you may be able to access more revealing figures such as engagement, replays, and viewer “drop-off” points—the actual points or segments where viewers lose interest in your video.

In a perfect world, paying fine attention to every KPI and making real-time iterations based on those insights is ideal. That said, it’s best to create videos with a specific action or intent in mind. This will also help determine which KPIs you should give the most attention to. Clear goals lead to clear, measurable results.

Note: It’s perfectly fine to focus a video—or even an entire video campaign—on one action or KPI. Content for sales-ready viewers should look a lot different than content for new audiences, and the metrics you follow should reflect that.

2. Measuring Video Performance: Real-World Examples

Consider a middle-of-the-funnel video that highlights a core service you provide, or pain point you address. For this video, your goal would be to influence viewers to learn more about the service and how it can resolve a problem or need. It is Consideration Stage content. With this in mind, your video goals should revolve around engagement and action. KPIs that you should pay close attention to for this video include:

  • Clickthrough Rate (video CTAs, links in descriptions, annotations/external links)
  • Form submissions (video form fields, landing page conversion rates)
  • Sources
  • Conversion Rate

Conversely, if your goal is to build your broad audience and interest first-time viewers, you should pay attention to your video’s plays, sources, and most importantly, play rate. Play rate represents the number of plays a video has compared to the number of times the video was loaded. 

Your new marketing video can have 10x as many plays as your other video content. However, if the play rate is poor, and the video is still failing to attract or interest your audience, it’s probably time to A/B test some new thumbnails or embed locations.

3. Rinse and Repeat

Digital marketing, just as a practice, requires constant fixing, tweaking, testing, and revising to truly work. Your audience’s behaviors and expectations change every day, which directly affects how well they respond to online visual content. 

Even the devices and apps that viewers use to consume video content change with time. There’s still no perfect way to share video over email, with most businesses linking video thumbnails to website pages. When it happens, it’s going to be huge for video marketing and introduce an entirely new category of video analytics. 

Overall, video is always changing. The ways video content is accessed, shared, and enjoyed depends on the industry and audience as a whole, and reviewing what’s working and what isn’t should be standard procedure for all video marketers.

Not sure what video metrics to pay attention to, or want to ramp up production on your next video project? Reach out to us today!

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