More NewsUnicast Releases Video Ad Format

Unicast Releases Video Ad Format

The format avoids streaming by precaching video -- which the firm says makes it more attractive to advertisers.

Rich media advertising firm Unicast is taking the wraps off a new version of its popular Superstitial ad format that allows advertisers to include video in their creatives without streaming.

As a result, New York-based Unicast says the format, dubbed Superstitial 300v, allows for 15 seconds of commercial-quality video, viewable by users regardless of connection speed.

Like the company’s 30-second Superstitial 300 and 15-second Superstitial 100 units, which deliver Macromedia Flash-based animation, the 300v is downloaded almost imperceptibly in the background of users’ Web browsing, and begins playing as an interstitial once it’s preloaded.

The product, which was developed using compression technology from Klipmart through an earlier alliance, is intended for advertisers eager to easily and cheaply repurpose their existing television creative for use online. Fully Flash-based ads, while benefiting from features like enhanced interactivity and 3D graphics, require more production effort.

Similarly, Unicast said its publishing and ad network partners could begin immediately selling the format, which can be trafficked across affiliated sites without any additional recoding.

“The core principal behind the Superstitial 300v is that … advertisers told us that they’d like to use their video assets, and many have taken video spots and turned them into a Superstitial 300,” said Allie Savarino, senior vice president of global marketing and partner services at Unicast.

“Many would like to use video, and we ask them, ‘Why aren’t you doing this now?’ and they say, ‘Well, we spent $400,000 on our television commercial and we’re not going to depend on streaming to get it out to consumers — the quality is too unreliable and we’re not going to risk it,'” she said.

In a live trial of the product, MRM Partners created a campaign for a new General Mills product. According to a study conducted by Dynamic Logic, the ad produced 276 percent lift in promotion association, a 34 percent lift in brand awareness, and an 18 percent lift in purchase intent.

In addition to General Mills, Nintendo and the U.S. Army are running campaigns using the format.

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