Weather.com Launches a Video Player with Ads

The Weather Channel has created a video player, dubbed Blue Box, for its Weather.com Web site. The Flash-based player is powered by Brightcove with ad serving from DoubleClick.

Blue Box, found at weather.com/bluebox, is promoted through a module on the home page and elsewhere on the site. Video content is arranged into channels such as top stories, on location, video blogs, and offbeat news. Additional channels are grouped by existing content segments on The Weather Channel’s site, including health, gardening, home improvement, pets, city guides, golf tips, and one minute weather.

The Weather Channel has packaged three IAB compliant ad units with the player, including an in-stream option served after every few videos watched and a transparent 300 x 250 expandable unit adjacent to the video screen. The latter ad unit retracts after a clip plays into a 468 x 60 bar beneath the list of available content.

“With the expanded ability to navigate through content [and] playlists… the end goal is to increase the inventory,” said Kim Shaw, director of online ad products at The Weather Channel.

TWC considered working with a handful of video ad vendors, but ultimately went with Brightcove for its flexibility, templates, and history working with DoubleClick. “The combination of those two players together gave us what we wanted from a video perspective, and also an advertising perspective,” Shaw said.

The Brightcove Internet TV platform will be adopted across TWC Interactive. Syndication plans have not been revealed, but The Weather Channel’s video content could be distributed to Web affiliates, blogs, social networks, and other points.

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