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My favourite video advert of the year so far by far!

The Force: Volkswagen Commercial

Really emotive, beautifully shot advert from VW, with the Star Wars score… absolutely love it!

When you make adverts this good, you don’t have to spend as much on media … this beauty has been watched nearly 40m times on YouTube already, at no cost!

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What is stopping brands from producing shorter pre-roll lengths?

For me the conversation about pre-roll lengths started in September 2007, when I joined Telegraph Media Group to launch Telegraph TV. Previously I had worked at a TV production company, and it was the norm for advertisers to run 30’ creative on the giant Blink TV screens that we managed at music gigs and festivals across the world.

In the digital space though, shorter lengths are important. As well as working with video as a medium I also shoot and edit it, and while I am no Spielberg I am capable enough to know that making a 10 second version of a 30 second advert is not rocket science.

I also know that the view through rate of 10 second adverts compares very favourably when compared with 30 second creative, and I know that video advertising investment is growing significantly, so why are so many brands relying on their 30 second TV spot to do a job online?

The mind-set of a consumer online is very different from that of somebody watching TV or Cinema. The lean-forward, active, fact-finding state of mind displayed in somebody online can be a very powerful proposition for brands, but I think in order to maximise that opportunity advertising has to be tailored to the environment.

I also believe that there is an unscientific, yet direct correlation between the size of the screen and the acceptable length of video advertising. Sat in a dark cinema, with no distractions and no chance of you getting up to make the tea or to put the washing on (my wife would tell you there is no chance of me doing this at home either) then a 90 second advert is likely to be acceptable. As the screen gets smaller the attention span decreases with it as the possible distractions increase. So in order to still engage these people, the creative length has to reduce as well. Maybe to a 30 on TV for example. Online you are one twitch of your finger away from leaving an advert if it is deemed too long, so once again the length of the pre-roll should reduce. The IAB Video Council recommendation is 15 seconds for online video pre-roll advertising; I would go one step further and recommend a 10 second creative length online. On mobile I think it should be shorter still, but that is another conversation.

If the creative agency are briefed at the very start that the creative needs to be adaptable to online, then there should be no reason why a shortened version of the TV/ Cinema advert could not be planned and created. At the moment, too many consumers are watching a smaller proportion of a longer message, and surely that is worse than them watching all of a shorter message?

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Bruce Daisley talk at IAB Engage (video)

Great talk from Bruce Daisley of YouTube at the IAB Engage conference.

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The growth of mobile stats [video]

Some interesting fact and figures on the growth of mobile from Sybase, a SAP company.

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Video advertising on mobile up 492% year on year!

The IAB and PwC have released a report on mobile advertising in 2010, and it looks as if pre and post roll advertising is the fasted growing ad-format of all, albeit from a low base.

Mobile video advertising still has many barriers, most notably inconsistent user experienced when streamed over a 3G connection; a lack of measurement and therefore accountability and many publishers are still struggling with the technical aspects of serving mobile pre-roll advertising.

I think that mobile video has the potential to be bigger than fixed-internet video before too long, and it is encouraging to see the signs of that happening in this IAB/ PwC 2010 report.

It would be interesting to see how much Apple’s iPad and other tablet devices have driven this growth in pre-roll advertising.

Snapsot from the report:

Expenditure on Mobile advertising formats. This category is broken down into:

• Banners and text links were up 62% year-on-year to £23.7 million (£14.6m in 2009).
• Tenancies were up 18% year-on-year to £1.7m (£1.4m in 2009) and a market share of 2% (3.8% in 2009).
• Pre- and Post-roll advertising was up 492% year-on-year to £1.1 million, (£0.2m in 2009) and a market share of 1.3% (0.5% in 2009).
• Other formats – including display advertising within SMS / MMS – £1.6 million, up from £1.2 million in 2009, a growth of 32% year-on-year.

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Collective acquires premium online video ad network Web TV Enterprise

Integration expected to speed shift of broadcast ad revenue to online video.

Collective, a full service provider of media and technology solutions for display and video advertising, announced today that it has acquired premium online video advertising network, Web TV Enterprise. The deal, which follows only six months after the Company’s expansion into the UK and just weeks after acquiring video advertising platform Oggifinogi, furthers Collective’s position as a leader in delivering audiences to brand advertisers utilising unified in-banner and in-stream video ad formats.

Web TV Enterprise is the UK’s largest premium online video ad network, representing many of the UK’s leading web publishers and content owners. A pioneer of the VOD (video on-demand) advertising space since 2006, Web TV presents advertisers with the widest range of premium video channels on the web, reaching more than 25 million UK viewers a month.

“Collective is committed to accelerating the shift of broadcast advertising spend online,” said Joe Apprendi, CEO, Collective. “Unlike most video networks, Web TV’s revenues come largely from broadcast media budgets versus smaller digital plans. Our acquisition of Web TV will allow us to tap video’s incredible potential and further strengthen our rapidly expanding capabilities.”

In its Online Video Advertising Market Report based on a survey of UK media buyers, Web TV Enterprise revealed that more than seventy percent expected online video advertising to increase by twenty five percent over the next six months. The research also suggested digital buyers are responding to improvements in audience measurement techniques, which has long been an obstacle for many, as noted by eMarketer which reported 31 percent of UK advertisers said online video ads need better measurement.

Collective also makes available Internet Gross Rating Point (iGRP) reporting for all Collective video, rich media and display campaigns, making the integration a natural extension of Collective’s product suite as the company continues to align its business with meeting brand advertising objectives.
“The promise of online video advertising lies in its ability to allow brand advertisers to engage with their audiences within the most appropriate content environments, where the most impact and opportunity exist,” said Jamie Estrin, Managing Director, Web TV Enterprise. “Collective’s success in combining data, targeting and analytics with the most engaging advertising format available makes this a natural fit for us. Our combined efforts will drive the advancement of online video advertising.”

The deal closed at an undisclosed amount.

About Collective

Founded in 2005, Collective is a full service provider of media and technology solutions for display and video advertising. We help brand advertisers and leading publishers monetize trusted audience data and brand safe ad inventory. Collective’s industry expertise provides a strategic advantage to its clients by leveraging proprietary audience modeling, insights and ad effectiveness metrics. Our flagship products, Collective Display and Collective Video®, are powered by AMP®, our market-tested data and media management platform. Collective is headquartered in New York with offices in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles, San Francisco and London. Collective’s investors include Accel Partners®, Greycroft Partners and iNovia Capital. For more information, please visit

About Web TV Enterprise

Web TV Enterprise ( is the UK’s largest premium online video ad network, representing many of the UK’s leading web publishers and content owners. As a pioneer of the VOD (video on-demand) advertising space since 2006, the company presents advertisers with the widest range of high quality premium video channels on the web, where it places audio-visual advertising. Web TV Enterprise exclusively represents premium content from partners including Sony Music, iVillage, The Independent, E! Online and IPC Media. Over 250 leading advertising brands have run pre-roll campaigns on Web TV Enterprise’s premium video channels including Sony Playstation, COI, Vodafone, L’Oreal, Renault and Unilever.
Founded in 2006 by Jamie Estrin, Web TV Enterprise’s premium video ad network reaches over twenty five million online viewers.

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U.S. mobile usage by activity

Found this on ComScore’s Data Mine.

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Five years of video advertising (US)

Found this nice, easy to read infographic on, and although it reports on the US market it is still interesting I think.

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AXA use TV spot, QR code and iPhone together

Love the creativity here, but I would imagine the percentage of people that actually interacted with the commerical was tiny. Not sure how long the commercial would have to be as well in order to have time to prompt you to get out your phone, fire up the QR code reader, and then get it to work with the QR code – a process that often takes longer than shown here.

Nice work all the same though!

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Cisco say in 20 years time you will be able to smell, feel and interact with your TV

Scott Puopolo, Vice President and Global Head of Cisco’s Internet Business Solutions Group has set out his thoughts on how TV will evolve during his keynote speech at the Over-the-Top TV Conference 2011 in San Jose, California.

I found myself baulking at the claims that within 20 years we will be able to smell the cooking taking place in the cooking shows we watch, or feel the breeze in our face when watching a show set on a beach. I think it will take ten years from internet connected TV’s to be fully adopted and used, so this sorcery that Mr Puopolo speaks off sounds fanciful at best. Who am I to argue with Cisco though, it could happen I suppose although the programming production process would be infinitely more complicated if you had to match smells and feelings with sight, sound and motion.

Here is Scott Puopolo being interviewed:

I can totally see the gesstural controls, video calling and interaction taking off more quickly than smellyvsion and breeze-TV, but whatever unfolds it is surely an exciting time for the TV industry!

Imagine the advertising potential? Wake up and smell the coffee, quite literally! Imagine a travel advert for Saint Lucia if you could actually feel the warmth of the sun and the sea breeze while seeing dreamy images? For decades fragrance houses have pumped millions of pounds into TV advertising, when the one sense that really counts for a fragrance (smell) is missing … imagine those fragrance houses being able to get their signature smell out to millions, alongside the branding?

The technology to make this happen is way beyond my understanding, but I’ll take Scott’s word for it because it sounds like the most creative advertising medium that you could possibly imagine!

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