YuMe Adds 'Triple Play' Ads
Video ad network YuMe has introduced a new unit that lets advertisers present up to three options for viewers to get more product information at the end of pre-roll ads. The new Triple Play format, for example, could allow users to watch more related videos, connect to a branded Facebook page or sign up for promotional offers.
The Triple Play unit reflects YuMe's broader efforts to encourage marketers to experiment with different formats and features in video advertising. It also provides them with additional metrics to gauge ad effectiveness beyond impressions. "One of the key things we've figured out is to let advertisers basically run whatever creative they'd like and change it very quickly without days or weeks of publishing tests," said YuMe co-founder and President Jayant Kadambi.
The company offers about 20 different ad units spanning different types of pre-, mid- and post-rolls, overlays and page takeovers that advertisers can customize further by choosing different features.
With the Triple Play ad, for instance, Kadambi said marketers can add whatever calls-to-action fit with a particular campaign, from attempting to send traffic back to corporate sites to online coupon offers to specific local information. The company says custom video ads on its network typically have a click-through rate of 1.6%, much higher than standard banner ads.
But pre-roll ads already are already considered an annoyance at best to many Web video watchers. How will prolonging ads by posting links for related videos or follow-up information at the end improve the experience?
Kadambi said that for one thing, advertisers can shorten the length of a standard 15-second pre-roll by a couple of seconds to allow for the calls-to-action presented in Triple Play ads. They can also add a "continue to content" button that lets viewers continue directly to the desired video. Such steps would help to "minimize the irritation factor," he said.
On board as the first advertiser using the Triple Play format is Livescribe, which makes the Pulse smartpen. The ad, developed with Horizon Interactive, links to a longer version of the ad for the pen-based recording system, its Facebook page and its home page. Kadambi said YuMe will charge a premium for the Triple Play ads over standard pre-rolls on its network, which typically carry CPMs from over $10 to the high $20 range.
If the ads don't end up performing better, then pricing will be adjusted accordingly, he added. But the company doesn't expect that to be the case.
YuMe ranked as the third-largest U.S. video ad network in November, with 73.4 million unique viewers and a potential reach of 43% of online video viewers, according to comScore. YuMe said it served more than 2.5 billion in-stream ads in the fourth quarter of 2009, its highest quarterly total to date.