February 23, 2016

How and why you should be measuring share-to-view ratios

KPIs! AVE! RTs! Balanced scorecards! Unique pageviews! Percent possession in the opponent’s final third! Everybody loves a ‘success metric’. (Or, let’s be honest, what many of these things end up being in reality: a vanity number.)

But, for all the disingenuous ‘just find something with lots of zeroes on the end’ reporting out there, there is at least one stat we think you should care about. We keep tabs on this on all our films, as should anyone wanting to make the most of social video. It’s a simple but effective metric: the share-to-view ratio.

Here’s a quick lowdown in case you’re not familiar with the concept:

What is it?

Just the number of views divided by the number of shares. A 100:1 ratio would mean that 1 person out of every 100 who watched your film thought it was worth sharing. Told you it was easy! But it quickly gives you an indication of how ‘shareable’ your video is – how much it’s risen above being merely ‘watchable’.

Why does it matter?

  1. Engagement: in a world where we’re accustomed to expressing ourselves and entertaining our friends by the content we share, this ratio tells you something about the quality of engagement you are (or aren’t) generating. If your film has to be seen by 5,000 people before you stumble across one who’s willing to pass it on to someone else, it’s probably fair to say you’re not really connecting with your intended audience. Conversely, if every 10th viewer is sharing the film, it’s pretty clear it speaks to people.
  2. Value for money: no reason to be embarrassed about it – a good share-to-view ratio fairly straightforwardly increases your return on investment. Every share means more ‘earned’ views from the same initial outlay. And, because they come from a friend’s recommendation, high quality views at that. These aren’t people accidentally stumbling across an embedded autoplaying hidden video, counting as a ‘view’ because they can’t find the stop button in time. A share shows you’re aligning your brand sufficiently closely with people’s interests and identity that they’re happy to make it part of their self-expression – and your content is becoming source material in groups of friends’ conversations with each other.

To illustrate the power of a good share-to-view ratio: it’s one of the reasons the percentage of organic uplift on our videos achieve is typically so strong. Branded video content normally achieves around 10-20% uplift on any paid media (so 80:20 uplift:paid), whereas we tend to flip that on its head – getting 80% earned/organic take-up, with only 20% coming from paid media. We can get remarkable numbers like that because we know how to make content that people love to share.

What’s a good benchmark?

As ever, this will depend on your particular campaign. Things like your overall aim for the content, whether you’re targeting a broad audience or a very niche one, whether you’re hoping for a quick hit or a slow-burn etc etc will all affect what success looks like.

But let’s give some really general parameters (we’re not cop-outs!) Usually, 1000:1 would be…not great. 100:1, nudging down to double digits is pretty, pretty, pretty good. 20:1 is spectacular. And every point you can drop it lower is more impressive than the last (remember, 1:1 would effectively mean every single person who watched your video had shared it with someone else – it would be an astonishing statistic).

A quick warning: you might do the maths on some of your past campaigns and find that you’re nowhere near these numbers. That’s the case for plenty of people. That’s OK, you can always talk to us and we’ll see if we can help (we frequently get share-to-view ratios of 40:1 and better).

A couple of examples

Have a look through our portfolio to see a heap of videos with strong share-to-view ratios. Here’s just a couple – mostly picked just because we like them and haven’t mentioned them for a while!

Hackett F1 | 30:1 share-to-view



During pre-season testing at Circuito De Jerez, Spain, we made the “Coolest Pitstop Ever”. Swapping Williams Martini F1 pitcrew suits for the effortless elegance of Hackett London tailoring we filmed the team in action and in glorious ultra-slo-mo. The film smashed all expectations online and has been used in Hackett London’s flagship store and as a projections this season’s F1 Grand Prix races.

Little Thor | 8:1 share-to-view



Paramount Films & Marvel approached us to help them raise awareness of the upcoming movie of one of the (at the time) lesser known hero’s in their portfolio – Thor. Due to the mildly humorous Kenneth-Branagh-directed tone of the film, they wanted to reach a broader audience than the comic book aficionados who knew the character already.

We created this deft parody of the trending VW “The Force” commercial , resulting in a huge amount of coverage in top media sites worldwide, and achieving over 2.9 million views, 2.5 million of them in the first few weeks before the movie’s launch.

Want to make a social video campaign for your brand that gets great share-to-view ratio? That’s like our specialism! You can always give us a call.