Home  › Media › Video

Hulu to Launch Video Ad Choice September 15

  |  August 12, 2010   |  Comments

Hulu, Yahoo, and AOL are prepping launch of the video ad format developed with VivaKi, to be ready September 15.

Major online video publishers including Hulu, Yahoo, and AOL will begin offering users the opportunity to choose which ads they watch when viewing online video, starting September 15th. Instead of pre-defined pre- and mid-roll ads, users will be offered two or three choices, with the intention of providing a better experience for users and better return on investment for advertisers.

The ad-selection system, called ASq, is based on the findings of a research project conducted by Publicis Groupe's VivaKi unit, dubbed "The Pool." That research - funded by a total of seven online publishers - aimed to help maximize the potential of video advertising for both advertisers and publishers. VivaKi developed the technology in partnership and with funding from the publisher partners.

"The act of selecting an ad greatly improves its results," said Tracey Scheppach, Pool co-founder and SVP, innovations director at Starcom MediaVest Group's SMGx unit. Scheppach said click-through-rates using the system were 240 percent higher than those of standard pre-roll ads, according to VivaKi's research. In addition, she said "top of mind awareness" rose by 438 percent, and purchase intent rose from "essentially zero," to around 44 percent. "In online video the ad load is lower than on television, so we have to find a way to make the units worth more," Scheppach said.

Following the implementation, users viewing video content on sites such as Hulu and Yahoo will be presented with a choice of ads from either two or three different advertisers, and prompted to select which one they would prefer to watch. If the user doesn't make a selection within a designated period, the unit will default to one of the ads automatically. Scheppach said three options has proved optimal so far, with too much choice proving almost as bad as providing users no choice at all.

"In the early days of TV, advertisers were using their existing radio spots until the industry eventually coalesced around the 30-second spot. We're at a similar place for online video," Scheppach said, suggesting the new units could become the standard for online video advertising.

"I wouldn't go as far as to say it will be the only unit, but advertisers need something to pour the majority of their money into," she continued, adding "This is intended for the entire industry."

The technology will be ready to deploy from the 15th of September, with Hulu currently preparing to launch on that day. A Yahoo spokesperson confirmed that it too intends to launch the new format, but that it wouldn't be doing so next month. Other publishers currently committed to the format also include AOL, MSNBC, Discovery, CBS, and video ad network BBE, all of which contributed financially to VivaKi's research, and subsequently will not be charged to make use of the technology.


Jack Marshall

Jack Marshall was a staff writer and stats editor for ClickZ News from 2007 until August 2011. 

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get ClickZ Media newsletters delivered right to your inbox. Subscribe today!



Featured White Papers

US Consumer Device Preference Report

US Consumer Device Preference Report
Traditionally desktops have shown to convert better than mobile devices however, 2015 might be a tipping point for mobile conversions! Download this report to find why mobile users are more important then ever.

E-Commerce Customer Lifecycle

E-Commerce Customer Lifecycle
Have you ever wondered what factors influence online spending or why shoppers abandon their cart? This data-rich infogram offers actionable insight into creating a more seamless online shopping experience across the multiple devices consumers are using.




  • SEO Specialist
    SEO Specialist (Marcel Digital) - ChicagoSearch Engine Optimization (SEO) Specialist   Marcel Digital is an award winning digital marketing...
  • SEO / SEM Manager
    SEO / SEM Manager (CustomInk) - FairfaxAre you a friendly, motivated, and inquisitive individual? Are you a positive, out-going leader? Are you...
  • SEO Analyst
    SEO Analyst (XO Group) - New YorkSEO Analyst @ XO Group About this Job, You and Our Team: The XO Group SEO Team is looking for you, a passionate...