The Future of Video Advertising? Focus on the Present First
|by Eric Franchi, 2 minutes ago|
I’ve recently been participating in a number of thought-provoking conversations on the future of digital video advertising. It’s certainly a hot topic, and for good reason: eMarketer predicts that U.S. video ad spending online will reach $5.5 billion in 2014, up from $1.5 billion in 2010.
But we’re not there yet. With so much money on the line, a lot needs to happen before digital video can fulfill its potential and grow to the point where it’s competing with the likes of TV and even digital display advertising for ad dollars. Everyone’s placing their bets on what the future holds, but before doing so, it’s important to consider what needs to be done in the present to get us there.
A few things to consider:
The cross-channel metric system “silver bullet” is not in our immediate future. We want to believe a new and unique measurement system will be introduced to place all advertising channels on the same playing field. We are not there yet nor will we get there in the very near future. Comparing GRP to iGRP is like comparing iPad keyboards to traditional keyboards. The layout may be the same but they are fundamentally different. Right now, without a logical way to accurately compare digital video advertising to other advertising tactics, it needs to continue to be sold and measured on its own merits, not because it looks and feels like a TV commercial.
Digital video terminology must be uniform and identifiable. Before we can develop accurate metrics specifically for video advertising, the industry has to be on the same page with respect to what constitutes pre-roll, click-to-play, auto-play, and in-banner. Even the term “in-stream” doesn’t seem to have a universal definition, which causes lack of trust amongst buyers. If the industry can’t define and compare formats, why would media buyers controlling more than $60 billion in TV budgets shift billions of dollars online?
Premium video content needs to be defined right now. Many argue that only movie studios and TV producers can develop video content suitable for the label, “premium.” I disagree. In a world where news breaks on Twitter and videos caught on camera phones go viral, the definition of what constitutes premium needs to be broader. A TubeMogal study revealed that at least one in six viewers abandon content they sought out before a pre-roll ad completes, simply because they are not willing to wait through the video ad. To me, this makes defining premium video content simple. Premium online video content is any brand-safe content – whether professionally or user generated – that is compelling and relevant enough to drive nearly everyone to want to complete the in-stream ad views.
While the future of video is bright, we as an industry have some work to do. It’s our job to make the buying process easier and clearer. If we don’t, we’ll continue to fight over dollars instead of seeing a fundamental shift toward a multibillion-dollar online video advertising market.
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