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How a News Site Used CrowdTangle to Improve Video Monetization Through Ad Breaks

Chiman Ng

News Partnerships

Janie Octia

CrowdTangle Partnerships


Create a new revenue stream through monetizeable video.


Use CrowdTangle to identify high-performing videos and insert ad breaks.


Revenue from ad breaks increased 66% month-over-month.
ETtoday is a digital-first news publisher in Taiwan that wanted to develop a new stream of revenue through ads on their Facebook videos. To help monetize their video content through ad breaks, they turned to CrowdTangle to help identify which videos would perform best.
ETtoday’s story
ETtoday is a digital first publisher with 26 different pages on Facebook. They have become one of the largest digital publishers in Taiwan by building their pages around a diverse set of content that includes news, entertainment, politics, finance, pets, sports, tourism, technology, video games, food, and more. They emphasize building video for social platforms and average 180 videos per day across their 26 Facebook pages.
ETtoday’s Goal
ETtoday wanted a way to directly monetize their video content on Facebook and maintain their high engagement and retention numbers.
ETtoday’s Strategy
  1. Build video content that users will spend time with and watch until the end.
  2. Utilize CrowdTangle to identify well-performing longer videos that could be monetized.
  3. Edit and lengthen videos identified through CrowdTangle to be at least 3 minutes, so they can be monetized.
  4. Monetize videos by automatically inserting ad breaks into eligible videos.
  5. Identify which types of videos perform best with ad breaks.
Prior to monetizing videos through ad breaks, ETtoday’s videos were typically less than 3 minutes in length. They put significant focus on creating an engaging first three seconds to capture a viewer’s attention. In ETtoday’s experience, once you get a viewer’s attention in the first 3 seconds, they keep watching so long as the narrative is powerful.
Once ETtoday was able to monetize videos through ad breaks in November of 2018, the publisher began focusing on increasing the output of monetization-eligible, 3-minute videos. To help inform this strategy, the publisher turned to CrowdTangle.
The ETtoday newsroom had always used CrowdTangle to measure interaction rate and observe how their competition was performing. A feature available to all users was introduced in early 2019: the ability to sort by video length. It opened up a new opportunity for ETtoday to identify videos with potential for monetization. This CrowdTangle feature let ETtoday look granularly at which of their videos under 3 minutes were performing well and then decide if they should expand them to 3 minutes in order to monetize them.
Chart graphic
We are now able to directly monetize our videos on Facebook with ad breaks, and we're seeing no drop off in terms of viewer numbers or interaction rate. We're very pleased with ad breaks.
Fifi LinSenior Deputy Editor-in-ChiefETtoday
This provided a new revenue opportunity for ETtoday, and gave them learnings on what types of videos to focus more on. As a result, they have found that videos around spreading positivity, human interest, music, and entertainment news perform especially strong.
“CrowdTangle is a great measurement tool that can quickly see the effectiveness of post interaction. CrowdTangle solved our problem of trying to measure performance of our monetizeable videos. In the CT dashboard, we can use “Video Length” option. We can now see which videos are between 2:30 to 3:00, and could be lengthened in order to be monetized. We review these videos, analyze which videos’ interaction rate is high, and decide based on this tool if we can monetize this content. We then try to understand why some of the longer videos don’t perform as well, and see how we can improve.” — Fifi Lin, Senior Deputy Editor-in-Chief
ETtoday’s Results*
After utilizing CrowdTangle’s video length feature to identify videos with potential for monetization, ETtoday found:
  • Revenue from ad breaks increased 66% month-over-month
  • 3min+ videos increased by 84.38% month-over-month
  • Video views increased by 6.36% month-over-month
Some top performing videos for ETtoday include:
Re-edited user-generated content (UGC) on two heart-warming stories about Taiwan community:
“We are now able to directly monetize our videos on Facebook with ad breaks, and we’re seeing no drop off in terms of viewer numbers or interaction rate. We’re very pleased with ad breaks. Together, ad breaks, Creator Studio and CrowdTangle help us observe and act on the market’s video trends. ” — Fifi Lin, Senior Deputy Editor-in-Chief
*All results were provided by the news publisher
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