Blended Approach to Pre-Roll / Auto Play Video ads

By Sandeep Casi

In the last blog article, I talked about the format wars between pre-roll skip video and auto play video and how neither will reign supreme. I also concluded that iterations on existing ad roll format are required to find one that could be more effective.

My own article got me to thinking about what how our technology could be used to innovate. We are already seeing agencies use Videogram to serve video into skyscraper banner ad units. I wondered what we could do additionally at smaller sizes to deliver more powerfully the benefits of a Videogram. What follows is an innovation and an iteration of existing ad formats to bring balance to the consumer as well as the advertiser.

I present to you a blended ad card . This Videogram ad card incorporates key aspects of auto play as well as pre-roll video. In order to produce the Videogram ad card, the video is indexed at the signal level and clips that are of importance based on color, motion, image similarity, and clip duration are extracted.

In the above  example, the summary of the video is presented in 5 frames. The top frame is the summary of the video in an 8 second animated gif format. Clicking on the top frame will play the video from the beginning. The next four frames under the animated frame are important events in the video extracted via our patented algorithm and clicking on them will stream the video from that segment. This provides the consumer two dimensions of discovery. The animated gif provides an overall summary of the video and the important frames provides direct access to stream from specific points in the video.

The blended Videogram ad card solves the following problems of pre-roll and auto play videos.

No Click Bait & No Negative Association

The user is able to understand the context of the video via the animated gif summary. What you see is what you get. The merit of the click-thru is now entirely based on the value of the content.   In fact, the consumer likely found the 3rd frame of the card or the 3rd second of the animated gif enticing enough to click through to consume the video. This does not happen when you have a single frame video embed as there is no choice for the consumer to sample the video. The fact that they choose to click into and were not baited means there is no negative association.

Managed Negative Disruption

Now that the consumer understands the value of the content, they would be willing to sit through a short pre-roll. Throw in a 10 second pre-roll instead of a 30 second skippable pre-roll.  Users are used to waiting for a 5 second skip button, but the fact they know a bit more about the video due to the Videogram ad card will in all likelihood have patience to endure the 10 second ad before they get to the content they like to see.    As such, negative disruption can be managed to a point that the user is willing to tolerate the ad-roll.

 Managed Mobile Cost Burden on Viewer

The Videogram card at best has to download (or stream) 15 gif frames.   The bandwidth needed would be less than what a user needs to render one html page on any site  on their mobile (Facebook for example).   Furthermore, the Videogram card will only load when the card is in view on the mobile screen and thus saving more bandwidth for the user.

The Videogram card is an iteration based on skippable pre-roll and auto play. In deployment with ad networks using Videogram in ad units, we have found its format to be more effective when compared to skippable pre-roll and auto play. This new ad card format we expect will boost performance even higher.  Please visit us at NAB booth in Las Vegas and we can share more info about Videogram and it’s effectiveness in the market.  You can get a free guest pass for the NAB show with code LV2455.

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