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  • Writer's pictureLiz Hayes

Research: Video is local media's domain (Part 2 of 3)

Last week we learned all about which SMBs are using content marketing as a tool to connect meaningful storytelling with consumers (see part 1 here). This week, we've once again tapped into the expertise of Corey Elliott, EVP of Local Market Intelligence for Borrell Associates, to break down the latest content marketing research from the study the Meta Branded Content Project funded this spring. Part 2 of our series focuses on what local advertisers are thinking when it comes to video (check out the whole webinar here).

Corey breaks down online advertising in three waves: search engines, social media and finally, video. Media companies are very interested in all three, but nobody has really been dominating video thus far.

"That's important, especially for local media companies, because I think that's something that they can grab onto," Elliott said.

According to research from Borrell's 2021 advertiser survey, the SMBs that use content marketing are using the following kinds of videos:

  • Live videos - 43%

  • Broadcast TV - 39%

  • Digital/Streaming/OTT - 36%

  • Reels - 29%

  • Cable TV - 24%

Overall, local advertisers that use content marketing to connect with audiences use more video in general. The research also found that businesses that use content marketing prefer to distribute their videos on their own social media pages first, followed by their YouTube channel, website, traditional TV spots, as pre-roll ads within streaming apps and within emails.

"They're very interested in videos and they're distributing through their own channels for the most part, and they're coming up with content marketing ideas themselves," he said.

Of those polled, 59% said an internal person or their own team produced and created video. A TV station or media company produced 34%, followed by freelancers at 31% and an agency at 23%.

Of the local advertisers that use content marketing, 36% plan to increase spending over last year, while 42% will spend about the same. Only 10% plan to decrease what they spent on videos, while 12% aren't sure.

There's also been a huge focus from national brands to advertise on TikTok, a short-form video sharing app, while local advertisers have been slower to test the waters. Only 8% of local advertisers are using TikTok, while 41% of national brands are.

"It takes awhile for trends to hit local mainstream America. As far as advertising and marketing goes, this is a giant gravitational pull. Those local marketers understand what TikTok is, their kids are using it, they get it. I think you're going to see a big interest in at least short form video," Elliott said.

Next week we'll post Part 3 of our content marketing research breakdown, which lays out all of the great opportunities for local media to capitalize on from this study. Download the research here!


The Meta Branded Content Project is designed through a strategic partnership between the Meta Journalism Project, Local Media Association and the Local Media Consortium to help facilitate additional growth, engagement, and revenue success for more publishers of all shapes and sizes.

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