Who your friends are says a lot about you, just as an ad's client say a lot about its quality, potential, and purpose. It's telling, then, that DreamWorks relied on Tremor Video's new "super pre-roll takeover" units to market its visually explosive blockbuster "Real Steel." The ads expand beyond the video player window to fill the majority of a viewer's screen, but only when the viewer engages with the creative.
Audience buying -- rather than paying for placement on Web sites that appeal to one demographic or another -- is winning over Madison Avenue. Same goes for audience-based video services, and Xaxis -- the recently launched data management platform (DMP) for all of WPP's agencies -- knows it. Beating similar services to market -- or so sources unrelated to Xaxis tell us -- the unit just debuted a video-buying solution for advertisers.
Pre-roll, mid-roll, post-roll? Overlaid streaming-all-the-way-through-the-video-roll? Backed by various findings, experts and experienced hands have gone back and forth over the best time to roll advertising into streaming video. Now, Vindico, the video ad-serving and tracking division of Broadband Enterprises (BBE), claims to have settled the debate once and for all. The best roll? Mid-roll, it finds -- at least within long-form video environments.
What happens when ads start appearing within ads? Does it inevitably lead to ads within ads within ads, and, ultimately, an M. C. Escher-like infinite loop of online adverting? More to the point, can this approach actually improve any single ad's performance? Jason Wilk, co-founder and CEO of Y Combinator-backed 140Fire, thinks it can -- at least when it's limited to a single, interactive banner ad layered over a related streaming video ad.
So much for Qwikster. Less than a month after detailing the DVD-only service, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings now plans to keep streaming and DVD deliveries under the one brand. "It is clear that for many of our members two websites would make things more difficult, so we are going to keep Netflix as one place to go for streaming and DVDs," Hastings wrote in a Monday blog post. "This means no change: one website, one account, one password... in other words, no Qwikster."
Though logical (from a seller's perspective), it always strikes us as sad (desperate?) to see companies continuing to innovate in the face of looming ownership shifts. Hulu is set to change hands any minute, but that didn't stop the video venture from doing a big distribution deal with Univision earlier this week.
What right-minded Web marketer wouldn't love something called a "click activator?" Also known as a "creative enhancement" (again, who could say no that that?!), activators are essentially creative units for online video, which attempt to drive a call-to-action.
It's a proud day for video advertising advocates everywhere. Like a medal of honor, the Interactive Advertising Bureau is crediting the channel's rapid rise with helping to counteract a worldwide advertising slump.
Do you put mobile video -- including the tablet kind -- in a different bucket than PC-based video? Usage behavior differs, and the buying may be separate, but, considering the way the world is going, it's best to factor these channels into your formula.
Last we checked, AOL was still hanging its hat on the whole "content company" thing. (Never mind that it's producing no notable fare -- of the genius or blockbuster variety; its largest acquisition to date is more aggregator than creator; and, with the flip of a switch, Facebook just established a far bigger reach for premium media.)