Google brought a 360-degree view to video ad campaigns Wednesday through TrueView in AdWords, known for its pay-per-click search advertising model.
Bud Light became the first advertiser in the United States to launch the 360-degree video running in TrueView ads. The company’s ads for its "Whatever USA" campaign focus on three events that took place during a takeover of Catalina Island off the coast of southern California.
Bud Light's immersive ads drop you right in the middle of the action, including a performance by Diplo, the welcome parade, and the "Turn of An Era" 1920s themed party.
There are opportunities in this video content tool for a variety of brands. Realtors, for example, can use the format to highlight the interior of a home. Car manufacturers can show off the inside of an automobile. Advertisers like Coca-Cola, Nike and Bud Light can create memorable and immersive branded experiences.
Google said the 360-degree video ads have a much higher view-through rate than standard videos, with Coca-Cola's hundredth anniversary 360 degree video outperforming standard videos by 36% in view-through rates. Nike also tested the platform with help from Cardboard, Google's virtual reality experience.
Chrome, Android and iOS support the feature, which originally gained support from Google in March. Users can navigate through the 360-degree video by clicking on the wheel at the top left of the image with their mouse if on a desktop, as well as tilting their mobile phone up, down, left, and right.
The technology is compatible with YouTube HTML5 Rich Media Mastheads and now TrueView in-stream and in-display units, but content creators will need a 360 degree camera from manufacturers like Ricoh Theta, Kodak SP360, Giroptic 360cam, or IC Real Tech Allie.