Video advertising is rapidly becoming the next hot area. It is an interesting place because of the massive numbers of videos now being viewed on the web. But how will it work? I can think of at least five models.
- Do you go pre-roll? A 10s clip shown before the video sounds like a good idea, but might be enough to stop people starting to watch videos. People surf YouTube and pre-rolls might make the whole process too stilted.
- Or, do you go post-roll? A clip (or maybe a link) afterwards. But people might just not bother to watch them. I’d love to know the percentage of YouTube videos that are watched to the end anyway – it may not be that high. Certainly I often don’t get to the end when I’m on there. Val reported last week that PostRoller has raised some money on this model. Revver is also based on this model.
- Another option is sub-site video advertising. This is where the video gets fired up in the background and when you close your browser it is there waiting for you. This sounds a bit spam-like but is apparently getting good traction. There is at least one interesting UK play here.
- Fourthly you can have click throughs from videos by tagging objects and placing links on them. This is technically difficult and I’ve yet to see much of it happening, but Coull in the UK have a neat solution.
- Finally there is advertising on the real-estate around the video player. The challenge here (and this applies to a certain extent to post-roll too) is that people will be watching the video and not paying attention to the surroundings, so you had better find a way to make it contextually relevant.
This is a critically important question for all the sites that are succeeding in getting millions of videos viewed from their sites. I am thinking 4 and 5 will be the models at the end of the day, but that there will be a lot of different experiments in the short term, some of which will doubtless feature headline grabbing high CPMs.
The good news is that I hear that there isn’t enough video advertising inventory out there at the moment to satisfy demand.