Survey Says: Ads in Videos Are Annoying

An interesting new survey of web users by Burst Media this month found that most people do not like advertisements placed in online video, few people pay particularly close attention to them and a significant portion of viewers leave a site all together when they see ads placed in videos. These aren’t surprising conclusions to come to. (via)

From the write up of the survey:

Among respondents, one out of two (52.7%) say they typically continue watching video content once they encounter an advertising unit; 40.4% say they typically stop watching.

Interestingly, one-quarter (27.9%) of respondents who stop watching video content once they encounter an advertisement also say they immediately leave the website…three quarters (77.5%) of respondents say advertisements in online video are intrusive..

What does this mean for video sharing companies and video content creators? It’s something that needs to be discussed widely.

It’s hard to say whether there will be an ongoing consumer backlash, almost all new media face struggles to become economically viable while early consumers yearn for content free of advertising. I don’t particularly like pre-roll ads myself, though I try to click on all the post-roll ads I see in videos I like just to support all the people involved.

Google AdSense is far and away the most profitable form of online advertising that’s emerged of late but that’s in large part because many people don’t recognize the text link ads as ads at all! Other media have found that the initial backlash fades when consumers begin to empathize with content creators and delivery services. At least that’s been the case where advertising has been kept low-key.

For now at least, advertisers are willing to pay far more for ads that run before videos than for those running after. If the practice of leaving a site all together upon seeing a video ad becomes common, though, pre-roll ads may not be the most valuable in the long term.

Post-roll ads are of questionable impact, though. Just yesterday, for example, Jay Dedman and Ryanne Hodson of FreeVlog and RyanIsHungry cited the unproved viability for all but the biggest stars of Revver’s post-roll ads with revenue sharing when they explained their decision to work with Podtech.

As we move towards launch here at SplashCast, we’re feeling a real need to explore revenue streams other than pre or post-roll video ads. Other than white-labeling software (a great approach), there are not a lot of alternatives that have been brought to market yet. We’ve got some interesting ideas we’re working on.

I think the questions brought up by this Burst Media survey are of general interest to anyone who uses the web. If pre-roll ads drive away viewers and post-roll ads are not worth very much – what models are likely to emerge with strength in the coming months?

From infrastructure providers to content creators, people need and deserve to be able to afford the time and energy it takes to make the thriving ecosystem of online media continue growing.

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6 Responses to Survey Says: Ads in Videos Are Annoying

  1. Dave says:

    I’ve noticed that companies such as YouTube like to watermark their videos.

    As an example…
    I did a short clip of a ‘Walk Against Warming’ protest march a while back.
    The clip has a short intro title leader.

    I would find it appealing if I could have uploaded this video to a site such as Splashcast, and be presented with a series of clients compiled by the people running the site.
    I scroll down and find a sponsor that I feel fits my clip, say Green Peace.
    I select this sponsor and when my video is posted on the site, a watermark with the Green Peace logo and a corporate message is overlayed across the bottom of the clip (or some user selected zone.)
    The watermark appears for standard minimum time before fading out, so if I don’t want to have the watermark on the content, I make sure the titles I’ve built run for this minimum time.
    The video producer may elect to keep the watermark up for a longer period of time, and the sponsor pays extra for this extended time under the viewer’s eyeballs.
    If the watermark is clicked on, the video producer gets a ‘click’ fee.
    It may be self policing in that most people would try to find a sponsor match most likely to gain them ‘click’ fee’s.
    You may find that content producers end up highlighting the watermark to improve the ‘click’ rate.
    There would also be parody potential :-)

    Content producers may feel comfortable with a series of sponsor messages appearing during the running of their clips?
    Possibly a site generated sponsor roll at the end of the clip would also be an option for those who would accept a smaller fee for having the end of their clip tagged?
    Some people may go for all options!

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