So you’ve sold all your pre-roll inventory. Or maybe your viewers are tired of pre-rolls. What’s a Web publisher to do?
Be like AdSense.
Make the content the ads, and don’t charge unless someone is into you.
That’s the premise of a new video monetization platform from analytics firm Visible Measures that the company has been quietly rolling out for a year, but just officially announced last week. Already, early results are promising in terms of brand lift and new revenue, and the system is a good example of how online video technologists are innovating their video offerings to stay ahead of this growing market.
Dubbed VidWorks, the system is similar to Ad Sense in that it serves up branded content but doesn’t charge the advertiser unless a viewer actually watches the video, said Visible Measures General Manager for Analytics and Senior VP of Business Development Paul Botto. When someone chooses to watch branded content, the advertiser pays Visible Measures, which then shares the revenue with the publisher. VidWorks does not require new ad space, and the branded videos live among video playlists on publishers’ sites.
“On a site, you might see recommended videos and see sponsored content and within that we will place our branded content. So you’re not forced to watch that, but when we place these videos they are contextually relevant, so the brand gets a lot of brand equity, the consumer gets the experience of content and the publisher gets paid for it,” he said.
Based on brand studies Visible Measures has conducted, marketers have seen brand lift in the four times to six times range above the norm with these tools, while publishers are realizing new revenue growth in the six and seven figures, Botto said. Visible Measures is working with Conde Nast, Rodale, Deca, Kiplinger’s, RealClearPolitics, IB Times and other publishers as well as brands including P&G, Microsoft, Ford, Goldman Sachs, Unilever, and others.
The key is to connect the sponsored content to the context of the site. If a mom is looking at information on car seats, that might be the place to deliver an ad for the Ford Escape that highlights safety features, Botto said. “It’s clearly coming from Ford and the viewer knows it’s branded content, but she wants to see it nonetheless because it’s relevant,” he explained.
Visible Measures relies on its analytics on consumers, sites and videos to match up publishers to brands and then to the viewers. “We have this massive database of video viewership, so I can look at metadata on videos and apply it to my cache of branded content and find matches,” Botto said.
VidWorks is free for publishers.