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Programmatic Video Ads

Online video streaming back in the early 2000s was all about video-buffering and long pauses interrupting the video. Thanks to the terribly low data speeds, people tended to avoid online video streaming. Those were the 2G days. But internet speeds have been increasing at a steady pace since then. With the advent of technologies like 3G and 4G and the expected arrival of technologies like 5G and fibre-based broadband services with speeds of 100 Mbps, India’s data speeds have come a long way. Online video streaming has immensely benefited from this development, and so has digital video advertising and programmatic video ads.

The arrival of high-speed internet is a prime reason to cause the shift in the data consumption pattern. During the low-speed era, the audience preferred to consume content in the form of text. This included static and text-based content like blog and news. This scenario has now changed drastically. Nowadays, video tutorials are the go-to place for everything. The demand for video content is constantly on the rise and content creators are feeding the demand well. From “how-to” videos to complete technical stuff like taking expert tutorials on subjects related to their professions, news, and entertainment, there is at least one video out there, explaining everything. Videos are catering to everything – be it entertainment, education, or news and updates. Audiences are hooked on to the video for many hours during the day.

Swaths of audiences are flocking to video streaming services. YouTube, the video-sharing website, is the second most trafficked website in the world, ranked just below, Google. Apart from this, there are many other sites which provide video-based content. Many of them, who earlier provided text-based content, have now shifted to video-based content. Naturally, brands cannot miss out on this golden opportunity to reach out to their audiences. In this quest, advertisers are following their audiences on these video streaming websites. As a result, there is a constant rise in the Digital video ad spends.

While it is important to reach out to the audience, it is even more crucial to reach out to the right ones. Programmatic video advertising enables brands to reach out to the right audience, at the right time. With programmatic advertising, brands will not end up racking their heads over low ROI, unable to answer their bosses over where the budgets were spent. Programmatic video helps brands connect to the audiences that truly matter. This avoids the dead investment in buying unfruitful ad impressions and helps brands to channelize their ad budgets properly, giving a boost to the ROI.

Types of Video Ads

Video ads are available in a variety of formats like in-stream, out-stream, and in-display video ads.

In-stream Video Ads
Instream video ads In-stream video ads appear within an existing video and have formats such as pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll.

Out-Stream Video Ads
Outstream video ads Out-stream ads are served within non-video environments, like in between articles, and games. They can play without an existing video, within the main body of text-based content like a blog.

In-Display Video Ads
Indisplay video ads In-Display video ads are the ones that appear as “suggested videos” in the sidebars. Advertisers can choose the formats to suit their specific requirements.

Now, these ads are served from video ad servers and played into the video players. For this, ad tags like VPAID (Video Player Ad Interface Definition) and VAST (Video ad-serving template) are used. VAST is an industry standard developed by the IAB to address the compatibility issue between video ad servers and video players located on websites. It provides a general framework for embedding in-stream videos. VPAID is a piece of code that facilitates communication between video ad units and video players. VPAID adds a certain level of interactivity. Compliant video players can display rich interactive video ads using VPAID. It offers more ways of engaging the audience, thereby increasing the level of interaction.

Video ads can also be served on a variety of devices such as desktop, mobile, connected TVs. However, the audiences are shifting towards mobile devices, thanks to the increasing mobile penetration and faster data speeds in the country. Over half of the advertisers are planning to increase mobile and digital video ad spends in the near future, as per the report by IAB. The overall time spent on digital devices has gone up steadily over the past few years. Each customer owns multiple devices. Naturally, advertisers have to reach out to their customers on all these devices.

Programmatic allows brands to reach out to the right audience, on the different platforms they are present on. This includes the multiple devices and the different apps and websites accessed through those devices. With programmatic advertising, brands can leverage the different audience segments on different websites. This increases the scope of their audience reach. Instead of burning the complete ad budget on one single video site, programmatic advertising brings in the best audience from most major websites, helping brands to find them the right audience across a wide range of the spectrum. It allows advertisers to reach customers across multiple devices, through its omnichannel targeting capabilities. This allows brands to provide consistent brand communication to their customers across all their devices. Thus, brands can achieve a better brand recall, which helps them optimize their sales funnel numbers, conversions and ultimately, brings in a better ROI.

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