You’ve probably heard it said that video ROI is impossible to calculate. Since content marketing is inbound marketing rather than direct sales, this is mostly true from a traditional marketing standpoint. However, that doesn’t mean that the effectiveness of your video can’t be measured.

What’s the goal of a successful video? That’s right – engagement from your target viewers. That’s something that can be measured. Here’s 5 ways you can gauge video effectiveness:

1. A/B test your thumbnail

A very simple, turnkey way to measure the effectiveness of your video is simply by A/B testing your thumbnail. Many marketers put a whole lot of effort into crafting a great video, but forget that the thumbnail plays a HUGE role in whether the video is click-worthy to begin with. This is especially important for bigger-budget “Hero” videos (as opposed to small-budget “Home” videos) that you want to achieve a measure of virality.

2. Include linkbacks wherever you can

Linkbacks to your target landing page should be deftly inserted into the video. On Youtube, for example, you can add linkbacks on your official channel page, through annotations that pop up during key parts of the video, with advertising overlays, or with naked urls inserted directly into the video description.

3. Measure call-to-action timemark engagement

Every successful video script includes a call-to-action that comes somewhere near the end of the video. As a rule of thumb, the shorter the video is, the longer you can delay the call-to-action. But the longer the video, the sooner it should show up. Viewer retention is not something to be taken lightly. With this in mind, knowing the exact timemark when your call-to-action appeares in the video can be very useful in measuring viewer engagement.

4. Pay attention to those rewatches

Many video platforms, including Youtube, have a built-in counter for rewatches from specific viewers. The number of rewatches as a percentage of total viewers is indicative of the marketing strength of your video (more on this further down), but is also useful to determine the percentage of viewers you can take to the next phase of the funnel. Re-watchers can even be invited to join your newsletter, for example.

5. Engaged views matter, not total views

One of the biggest issues with total view count is that it doesn’t really tell you anything. It’s sort of like having a billboard with a counter that adds one each time a car passes by a motion sensor. It’s much more useful to measure engaged views:

Engaged views = Total Views x Average Percentage Viewed x Demographic Viewer Percent

Where “Average Percentage Viewed” can be taken directly from Youtube’s analytics report, and “Demographic Viewer Percent” can be chalked up from your target countries, genders, and age groups. Engaged views tells you how many of your target viewers actually engaged with your video, and gives you a much more reasonable assessment of your video’s effectiveness.