The Common Craft Video on - Effective?

As you may know, we worked with Dropbox on the video that appears on the front page (when not logged in).  Like most in the video business, we’re always looking for data or other evidence that a video has a positive impact.

Dropbox Common Craft Video

From time-to-time I check with Dropbox about the video and how it’s impacting their business.  Recently, I received an email from Albert Ni at DropBox that provides a look at the role the video plays and how it’s performing.  I’ve copied his points here:

- During the week, the video gets nearly 30k hits a day (that threshold should be crossed soon)

- In the past month, the video was viewed 750k times

- On the referral register page (the page people see when they are invited by a friend to join Dropbox), the conversion rate goes up from 30.0% to 33.2% when the video is viewed, this is probably an underestimate of the video's actual impact (see the next note)

- In general, measuring the absolute impact of the video is a little tricky, because there are always going to be people who already know they want to sign up for/install Dropbox, and thus won't bother to view a video. The video's true value lies in convincing someone who wouldn't have otherwise signed up to do so - thus I think the actual boost provided the video is even greater than the 33.2/30.0 that the previous stat might suggest, since a decent chunk of the 30% who didn't view the video but still signed up were probably already predisposed to do so

- Overall I'm positive the existence of the video increases conversions by a hefty margin, and probably gets us several thousand signups a day that we wouldn't have otherwise

- The video is definitely considered a core part if not the core part of our strategy for introducing people to Dropbox ... I've personally heard from plenty of friends who said that the video helped less tech-savvy people like their parents understand the basic concept of Dropbox much, much better.

So, the anecdotal evidence is there, but the actual impact is hard to quantify. Let’s take a closer look. It may seem like the conversion rate rise from 30.0% to 33.2% is minor, but it’s actually a more than 10% increase in the rate of conversions. And as Albert notes, that probably underestimates the value of the video overall.  

I’m also excited to know the video is getting 750k views a month, which is a factor of Dropbox’s incredible growth and popularity. The video has been on (and in their App) for over a year, which likely means (after adjusting for growth over that time) that the video has been viewed maybe 5-7 million times.  

Aside from the data, the video is doing what it was designed to do: introduce Dropbox to the less tech-savvy population - an audience who is often evaluating the technology vs. downloading it as fast as possible. If a video can prompt thousands of people a day to sign up, I think it’s a win.

The Dropbox video strategy is similar to that of BitTorrent:


BitTorrent Front Page

They both have very popular products and a lot of traffic.  The goal with a video was not viral marketing. It was not getting people to blog about it.  It was focused on providing an on-site resource for people to get turned onto the product.  

If you’re thinking about how to use video for your business, think about the difference between a video that markets and a video that educates.  If you have people coming to your website, but are having a hard time converting them, it may be worth your while to provide a short video that makes them feel confident that they’re going make an informed decision. Where you do that is important - and in the case of Dropbox, it was on the front page of the site, just above the download button.