The future may very well be Internet video, with a time when the Web is crucial to delivering video content not that far away. But until the questions remaining over advertising are answered, the industry cannot move forward.
Internet video is an increasingly important part of the way media content is delivered to our homes. More companies than ever are seeing the benefit of at least having a Web video option in their line-up.
Just look at Hulu, which continues to grow at a phenomenal rate. Or the new ‘Game Rewind’ service from the NFL. Or even the increasing amount of deals being set up by Google to get professional content on to YouTube.
The Monetization Issue
But the big problem with all these new initiatives, along with all the other video start-ups you read about, is the question of how to monetize the content.
YouTube has recently made some progress in this field, trying to up its professional content, and increasing the ways in which the company can make money. But the profits still aren’t huge, and that’s with the stupidly huge amount of traffic YouTube receives every month.
TiVo Users Hate Adverts
New research from Starcom USA-TiVo shows that “90% of DVR (Digital Video Recorder) users almost always or always fast-forward through commercials.” This is a higher figure than was previously claimed.
Most of the responders to the survey claimed that skipping through adverts wasn’t the main benefit of owning a TiVo or DVR, that was the chance to record programs for later viewing, but with the option there it’s obvious that most people will choose to take it.
Internet Video Advertising Options
So where does this leave Internet video advertising? At the moment there seems to be three options for companies looking to monetize their videos: pre-roll advertising, post-roll advertising, and inline advertising.
The first option sees an advert appear before the clip plays, but viewers tend to be impatient. Post-roll sees an advert appear after the video, but most people will simply navigate away before the advertiser gets their point across.
Which leaves inline advertising where the advert runs alongside the video for its duration. This normally takes the form of a text-based ad visible under the video, and is a method YouTube has tried.
The DVR study shows that viewers simply aren’t interested in adverts and will do all they can to avoid them. Which is a problem for the burgeoning Web TV industry. Unless a viable solution guaranteed to raise funds is found then the industry may fail to truly take off as it should.
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