AOL is introducing a new video advertising format: ticker ads. It’s the latest video site to move away from pre-roll, which the Online Publishers Association suggests is a good model but otherwise is roundly rejected by users as delivering a bad experience.
According to the AOL press release, the new ads were developed in conjunction with Gannett-owned PointRoll. Here’s how they work:
Rather than overlaying an ad and obstructing the view of a video, AOL’s video ticker ad appears at the bottom of the video player 10 seconds into the video stream. When clicked by a user, the ad expands while the video pauses. If the user does not interact with the ad, it will dissolve after 15 seconds leaving the branded text link. Clicking on the branded text link, located at the top of the video player, will relaunch the ticker.
Below is a screenshot:
The new AOL ads are similar to those recently integrated by YouTube on the site. However, none of the video is obscured in the AOL ads, as the release excerpt says above. Yet the approach is similar to the YouTube (and Brightcover and VideoEgg) approaches. It suggests a new standard may be emerging for online video advertising, which avoids pre-roll entirely.
NBCU and News Corp. video destination HULU has also said no to pre-roll.