YouTube Adds Ads To Videos
Although Internet video ads generally annoy me, the solution Google has developed for YouTube is quite decent. Check out a YouTube video advertisement in action via this video.
The yellow mark on the progress bar indicates when the ad appears. The ad itself is a stripe that takes up the lower portion of the screen, and has a subtle animation and “overlay” effect over the video, all while the video is still playing. There’s a button to hide the overlay. If you click on the ad, the video pauses and the actual video advertisement appears in a smaller, overlaid video window. Mark Evans has a good overview of this new video ad format.
Now, as far as ads go, this doesn’t kill me. The ads I get annoyed with are the “preroll” variety that you’re forced to watch before you get to see what you’re really interested in. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to watch an Internet video, and when the unwanted preroll appears, I roll my eyes and hit the back button.
What Google and YouTube have come up with is a good compromise between user and advertiser. Television is already full of ads that take up a portion of the screen, so I don’t think users will be annoyed by this approach. And by requiring a click for an ad, Google can track clicks, and since a click implies genuine interest, this means better conversion rates. Lastly, consider how YouTube videos are embedded on websites, and this approach suggests ads can be embedded along with them (Adsense potential?)
From the looks of this first attempt at monetizing YouTube, I think Google will be successful – and as Tony Hung notes, possibly insanely successful. The frictionless money-making machine trundles forward.
[tags]Google, YouTube, Videos, Technology, Web 2.0[/tags]