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Video Advertising

What are Outstream Video Ads and How to Get Started With Them?

By 2021, 80% of internet traffic will be represented by video, as predicted by Cisco.

Likewise, ad tech video ad spend is predicted to reach US$37 billion in 2020 and US$43 billion by 2023.

With Google encouraging to use outstream video ads, a boost in outstream video advertising is expected.

Video Advertising Statistics
Source: Statista

But what is outstream video advertising about? How’s it different from in-stream advertising? Let’s learn more about all that here.

What is an Outstream Video?

These are video ads that don’t require video players to run on the publisher inventory. Etymologically, outstream means out-side the stream-ing media/service.

Since there is no need for video players, publishers with editorial content are able to show video ads. The autoplay video ads on Forbes website is an example of outstream video ads. 

Back in time, users only saw video ads with video content. Like YouTube, where you have noticed in-stream video ads (pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll) in bulk. For ad tech, it was difficult to utilize video ads on websites because of technical challenges and user experience norms.

The biggest challenge was to show video ads without increasing page load time. Then there were problems like designing an ad unit that shows both video ads and banner ads (as a fallback in case of no video ad bid is received).

But with time and technological advancement, we tackled these challenges and now publishers can show videos ads with/without showing video content.

Types of Outstream Video Ad

A customized video player is placed on webpage to show only video ads.Display ad units are customized to show video ads specific to the size of the ad unit.Video ads are designed to appear after user scroll (> 50%) within the test to offer highest engagement.
Types of Outstream video ads

These are the three basic types of video ads. Your partnered network or agency can offer customized placement like overlay style, expand on user click and more.

Instream vs. Outstream Video Ads

Don’t video ads compliment video content? Placing them with editorial content can be risky for businesses.

You, just like the rest of publishers, might be having these thoughts. However, Teads data shows outstream ads to perform better than instream video ads.

Campaign Benefits of Outstream vs instram ads
Source: Teads

Here is a detailed comparison between outstream and instream video ads:

Video playerNot requiredRequire video player
User controlAds can be scrolled and skippedInterrupt the main content
IntrusiveCan be muted (recommended)Sound on
Technical requirementsAd unit size and design can be optimized as per requirementsStrict technical requirements

Outstream videos are getting better engagement and more conversions. Clearly, advertisers and marketers would want to spend more on outstream video ads.

Is Outstream Video Ads Right for Your Website?

We have established that the outstream video advertising market is hot right now. However, does this ad type if right for you?

In 2016, BuzzFeed claimed that they are making 50% of their revenue by video ads and pushing this number to reach 75 in the coming years. In the same way we are seeing The Washington Post, Forbes, and CBS experimenting with video ads.

Video advertising is working for these big media companies. But should you be investing in it?

Yes, of course.

A compelling case for outstream video ads was also made when Google launched them as an additional service in 2018. This directly indicates that big advertising platforms such as AdWords and others see outstream video ads as a profitable market, likely to expand in the upcoming months.

In short, you—a publisher—should start experimenting with video ads and now is the great time to start.

outstream ads
Source: Google Blog

Benefits of Outstream Ads for Publishers

Video ads without video content: Outstream video ads allowed publishers with no video content to show video and monetize with it. Since video advertising is supposed to be the next big thing in ad technology, all publishers get their chance to experiment with the tech because of outstream video ads.

No more banner blindness: Banner blindness causes users to ignore ads on a page wasting advertiser’s campaign money and decreasing publisher’s viewability score. In such a case, video ads have proven to reduce banner blindness and offer better user engagement. According to Bannerflow data, in-video banner video has improved CTR by 18.4%.

Easy setup: As the demand for video inventory is growing more and more ad agencies are offering simpler solutions to video advertising. For some networks and servers (including Google), video advertising is as easy as placing a code snippet..

Disadvantages of Outstream Video Ads

Tricky to monetize for first-timers: Outstream video is a new technology which seems to be working for big publishers. However, if you are starting right now, the results might not be as glamorous as you are expecting. You would be required to put in extra man-hour to optimize your ad units to work for various video ad placements.

Can be intrusive: If your video ad is intrusive, Chrome will filter it out. Coalition for Better Ads made it clear that video ads with sound on is the most annoying ad type out there. Start by avoiding that. When it comes to intrusive ads, there is no fixed definition. So it is recommended to stick to industry standards even in the case of video advertising.

Not recommended for small publishers: Video ad networks have minimum traffic and revenue requirements for publishers in order for them to use video advertising. For small publishers, it can be tough to make the cut. And even if they do, managing the video inventory along with the rest of it brings out the requirement for ad operation team—which in return increases the cost. 

How to Get Started?

First, you need to get in touch with a video ad network. Enquire whether your existing partner(s) offers the outstream ad services or not.

If you are using Prebid (or header bidding)

Prebid supports outstream video ads without having to make any major changes. Basically, you will be winning bids via header bidding to show outstream video ads. To get started, publishers need to have at least one adapter with a ‘video’ media type. If this is not the case with you, then get in touch with networks that can get you video header bidding demand (like AdPushup).

If you are using Google Ad Manager
Google Ad Manager allows integration with outstream video ads (including Prebid and/or any other network setup). Outstream video ads are available for open and private auctions, along with preferred and programmatic deals. The available formats are in-article, in-feed, native, rewarded, and interstitial for mobile and desktop inventory.

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