The Rise of Interactive Video


TWEED GUEST EXPERT is a series of posts authored by industry experts to introduce various perspectives on the branded entertainment industry.


Ever since groups of shoppers crowded around shop windows to catch a glimpse of the first television set, video has been a staple of advertising.   And why not?  Television was the advertiser’s first opportunity to combine the power of visual imagery that was found in print with the persuasive selling power of radio…

Fast forward seventy or so odd years to the present, and video has been given an online renaissance – thanks in no small part to the popularity of online video sharing sites like YouTube.   However, while video is excellent at conveying an idea or highlighting a product, advertisers today need to directly tie their efforts not only to impressions, but to action – something that’s significantly harder to do with video.

Enter interactive video.  Just as television gave advertisers the combined power of print and radio, interactive video joins the narrative capacity of online video with the clickable and trackable elements of an interactive site or ad unit.  Integrate that into an e-commerce platform, and suddenly brands can combine the shareable nature of video with the drive to make purchases at an online retail store. No matter where the video is hosted, one click will drive the viewer back to the store to find out more information, buy a product or browse a related page.

E-commerce is a huge industry, but think of the last time you saw more than a simple product photo on an online retailer’s site.  Some have dipped their toes into online video, but few have taken the plunge and integrated a full-blown video push to highlight their wares and persuade buyers.  Taken even further, this symbiosis allows agencies to be smarter than their competition and provide their clients with a breakdown of the actions taken by the viewers of their viral videos rather than just a headcount. 

There’s no question that video is a powerful selling tool, and has been since Uncle Milty first brought the Texaco Star Theater into living rooms across the country.  The web has allowed for a new evolution of video – one that can help us understand more about consumer behavior and to instantly answer users’ questions – the most important of which being, “Where can I buy this?”

Overlay.TV for Retail allows online merchants to seamlessly create dynamic brand experience pages with interactive video:





About the Author:

Kevin Barwin is VP of Business development for Overlay.TV.  Their interactive video commerce platform, Overlay.TV for Retail enables online retailers to seamlessly integrate interactive video into their product database, and allows the creation of UGC testimonials and brand experience pages.   For more information, visit









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