Things to Consider While Designing Advertisements for Video Content

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We're all familiar with general text and banner ads normally used with text-based content. But, advertisers often explore other content mediums to reach large number of targeted audience. One of such mediums is videos. Nowadays, we can see several popular video sites hosting in-video advertisements that run within the video player frame. These advertisements are very effective and generate high (CTR) click-through-rate. If you're planning to develop such kind of interactive media ads, you must consider some important things to get most out of your in-video ad. The precautions and general guidelines mentioned here will help you create an effective and performing interactive media ad for video-based content. Let's see some of these important measures that may help us in designing great in-video ads.

Rich media ads report

Decide the Ad Type

The first important thing that must be decided is the type of advertisement you intend to develop. Interactive media ads come in various formats, especially those which are directly hosted or played within a running video. Following are some of the popular ad formats related to video content.
  • Companion Ads - These ads are primarily wrapped around the video content in various forms. These formats can be text, video, rich media or a custom skin for the video player. Designing these ads is much simpler compared to the other two ad formats discussed in the following sections.
  • Linear Ads - This is one of the most popular ad formats you can see on YouTube too. These ads are shown within the video player frame either before the actual video starts, or during the mid of video or at the end of the video. While these advertisements are played, the actual video stream is halted until the ad is not finished.
  • Non-linear Ads - This is yet another popular format of in-video ads which are played concurrently with the video stream. In simple words, the viewer can see both the actual video content as well as the ad within the video player frame simultaneously.
According to the capabilities of your technical team and your budget, you can decide for the appropriate ad format that can deliver the best possible results for your campaign. Linear ads are the preferred choice for advertisers as it is known to give the best results. You may test and check non-linear ads as well.

Ensure Support for Popular Video Player Frameworks

Fortunately, over 95% of online video player frameworks are flash-based, which makes it very easy for developers to come up with compatible rich media ads. You must ensure backward compatibility of flash players for at least up to version 7 to ensure smooth running of your advertisements.

Although there are several other video player frameworks (e.g. Microsoft Media Platform), but the sheer dominance of flash players is such that all other frameworks play a minor role in online video player support. Still if you feel that the platform you're targeting may not be supporting flash, you must take every care to add support for the respective framework.

Ensure Support for Popular Video Codecs

Support for video player framework alone doesn't do the job. You must ensure that your rich media in-video ad supports all popular video codecs as well, especially those run by your targeted website. Some of the popular video codecs that must be supported by your ad are FLV/H.263, FLV/H.264, FLV/VP6, 3GPP/MPEG-4 and MP4/H.264.

This will ensure that not only your ad runs fine on the targeted websites, but also on any new website supporting a different codec format than the previous one. This will also ensure that you don't have to modify and develop your ad again and again to ensure codec compatibility.

Create Mobile-version Without Any Fail

Various studies suggest that surfing of video content on smartphones and tablets is increasing at exponential rate across the world. If you're designing such kind of ad for general desktop browsers, you must ensure that a mobile-friendly version is also developed. This can give you much better results that will exceed your expectations.

It may happen that while creating a mobile-friendly version, you may have to change the ad format from a linear to a non-linear ad. Whatever is the case, the resulting optimized version will help you get more leads compared to the regular desktop version that won't work as expected in the mobile environment.

Optimize For Speed and Size

Broadband speed around the globe differs drastically. The success of your in-video rich media ad also depends on how small and agile it is. Does it stuck before loading starts or it is very bulky resulting in frustration for users browsing the web with relatively slow connections? You must never compromise with the quality of your rich media ad for simply compressing the overall size of the advertisement.

The size of the ad can be reduced by avoiding extremely complex and loud graphical elements within the advertisement stream. This automatically reduces the size of the ad file. If the codec supports compression, you must take advantage of that feature to deliver a fast loading advertisement.

Developers can use Google Interactive Media (IMA) SDK for developing, hosting and delivering such kind of high performing ads for video-based content.


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