Viewership for branded video was at an all-time high during Q2 2014 as the lure of a certain sporting event forced the likes of Nike and Samsung to up their multimedia game.

New research from Visible Measures, a provider of video measurement solutions for online advertisers, shows that branded clips racked up a staggering 2.8 billion views over the second quarter as World Cup fever rolled into town.

The company states that advertisers are currently witnessing “record-breaking numbers” for their videos, with the total number of views growing by over 50% compared to the same period last year. As for the trailblazers in this niche, Nike, Samsung and Dove are all way out on top.

Big hitters

With billions of people expected to tune in to watch the World Cup unfold, online marketers were tasked with the responsibility of ensuring that plenty of anticipation was built up over the web.

Nike certainly bagged a brace with its two football-themed video campaigns during Q2. ‘Risk Everything’, released a month before the tournament and featuring big-name players such as Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Brazil icon Neymar in their international strips, topped the viewing figures with more than 117 million hits over the quarter.

Other World Cup-themed efforts led to campaigns designed for the tournament contributing 19% towards Q2’s total views for branded video.  

Another Nike campaign, ‘The last Game’, launched three days before World Cup 2014 kicked off and featuring a similar cast of international stars, placed second with just short of 84 million views.  

Samsung also recruited Ronaldo to feature in its video for ‘The Training’, which sees a number of high-profile players put through their paces by a team of robots. The themed approach paid off, as Samsung placed third on 73,069,395 views – one position higher than Dove’s non football-related ‘Patches’ commercial in fourth (58,352,036 views).

Also going with the football focus, Adidas completed the top five campaigns with 42,748,495 views for its World Cup-themed spot ‘The Dream’.

Raising the bar

Commenting on the findings, Brian Shin, CEO and founder of Visible Measures, said the fact that companies are breaking records with their branded video is a sign of the platform truly taking flight.

“This quarter, we saw the top campaign reach more than 100 million views, making it one of only 18 campaigns to ever surpass that milestone,” he commented.

“The growing viewership of branded campaigns is a testament to the importance of video as a tool for marketers to engage consumers.”

Adidas is one of the many global companies taking advantage of this trend, and the popularity of its video efforts during Q2 meant the company was the third-biggest brand in terms of online video reach.

Nike predictably finished top, with Samsung, Google and Dove filling the remaining gaps.