Sequential Video Advertising Across Devices

By on February 14, 2015

Uploading a Video to Youtube is No Longer Enough

It’s no longer enough to upload a short video to YouTube and hope that prospective customers watch it, engage with it, and visit your company’s website to learn more about a specific product or service. While that tactic may have worked years ago when e-commerce and online video were in their infancy, today’s consumers are savvier. They want to be courted, finessed, and educated on the finer points of an offering before being convinced to take the next step in the buying process.

A New Recipe for Better Engagement to Transaction Experience

As marketers struggle to figure out the best recipe for making that happen, some are tapping into a tactic known as “sequential video advertising.” This type of messaging allows marketers to follow a user’s engagement across multiple devices (smartphone, tablet, laptop) and optimize the advertisement (a DRTV commercial, for example) in real time during the campaign. Using this method, DRTV marketers are able to target higher-quality leads and usher users from initial engagement through to transaction. TV attribution contributes to these strategies to make sure they are keeping competitive with traditional media because TV isn’t out of the marketing sphere yet – it is still going strong.

Progressive Pitch Building

Using sequential video advertising, marketers can place targeted ads in front of customers who click through on their mobile devices. Based on what’s clicked and the specific message or product, companies can then follow up with similar messaging as consumers switch from one device to another. Reaching potential clients also becomes possible when some people take it upon themselves to check google serp software, which can help them monitor their business’s success and get a better understanding of the traffic going towards the site.

This progression allows marketers to build up their pitches as a consumer moves from one video to the next, ideally beginning with a “starter” pitch commercial and ending the engagement with an irresistible offer designed to close the sale.

Better Control over Messaging

In theory, sequential video advertising lets DRTV marketers gain better control over their messaging by jumping from screen to screen along with the average user. Calling sequential advertising the “next leap” in advertising, AdWeek’s Garett Sloane painted a picture of a multi-part brand story beginning on a tablet and ending on a smartphone:

“Sequential messaging is digital advertising’s next act, and software, device, and ad-tech firms are scrambling to build the infrastructure to make it happen,”

Facebook is Into It

Facebook recently jumped into the sequential advertising game, according to VentureBeat, with its purchase of video advertising firm LiveRail. In “Coming Soon to Facebook: Video ads that follow you from device to device,” the publication highlights how advertisers on Facebook see the emerging method of sequential mobile advertising as a way to better control their branding messages on social media. Facebook advertising has proved truly beneficial to many businesses across a range of industries. Assisted Living Facebook Ads have shown to be effective in targeting the over 60s when it comes to living options in retirement.

“Sequential video advertising allows marketers to place targeted video ads in front of a user when they click an ad on their mobile device. Based on what the person clicks, and what the product or message is, marketers are then able to follow up with similar video ads as they hop from one device to another.”Richard Byrne Reilly, VentureBeat contributor

Greater Control Over Delivery

Sequential video is especially appeal­ing to DRTV marketers because it allows companies to place different messages that not only build upon one another, but also offer greater control over delivery. “It lets companies extend customer conversations to online channels using digital video”, says Jared Lake, Hawthorne Direct’s director of Digital Media, and more effectively engage consumers who are using multiple devices:

“When you develop creative and messaging that speaks to multiple stages within the conversion funnel (i.e., awareness, consideration, purchase, etc.), you effectively expand the touchpoints and connections that you have with your customers. Much like the proven, creative DRTV tactics that marketers are already using, sequential video advertising is tailored to a consumer’s previous interactions with the brand. This results in increased relevancy and subsequently, conversion.”

Tim Hawthorne is author of over 200 published articles. He is founder and former CEO of Hawthorne Direct, a full service DRTV and New Media ad agency founded in 1986 and producer of over 800 Direct Response TV campaigns


About Tim Hawthorne

Author of over 200 published articles, Tim Hawthorne is Founder and former CEO of Hawthorne Direct, a full service DRTV and New Media ad agency founded in 1986. Since then, Hawthorne has produced or managed over 800 Direct Response TV campaigns for clients such as Apple, Braun, Discover Card, Time-Life, Nissan, Lawn Boy, Nikon, Oreck, Bose, and Heifer International. Tim is a co-founder of the Electronic Retailing Association, has delivered over 100 speeches worldwide and is the author of the definitive DRTV book The Complete Guide to Infomercial Marketing. A cum laude graduate of Harvard, Tim was honored with the prestigious "Lifetime Achievement Award" by the Electronic Retailing Association (ERA) in 2006 and inducted into the Direct Response Hall of Fame in 2014. He can be reached via email at

One Comment



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