Google Pilots AdSense To Video

    May 23, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

A closed pilot program for video ads on AdSense will launch this week; it’s a limited test that give online video publishers control of the ad displays.

Online video, we hear, is the latest and greatest thing since Bob Metcalfe invented Ethernet. It’s reaching a point where the norm is to find a three to five minute video on sites that used to be able to deliver the same content in text, which could be read in under a minute.

I know what you’re thinking. “David, you are a fossil. Online writers are a dying breed, and you should be pleased to feel the crush of evolution at your throat.” Fine. Think that way. I’ll be waiting for evolution with a smile and half of Cold Steel’s inventory.

The people have voted with their browsing habits, however, and video has been a big winner. Witness Google’s purchase of YouTube as validation. Video online offers a level of control for people that broadcast models could never hope to approach.

A few fortunate site publishers will get to try the next great thing from Google AdSense. Christine Lee, AdSense Product Marketing Manager, talked about it on the Google AdSense blog.

“With this pilot, publishers control when the ads play in their videos and choose which videos get the ads,” Lee said. She also provided a nice recap of Google’s video ad efforts to date:

  • Click-to-play video ads: This is a video ad type on our content network. Any publisher opted into image ads and using one of the supported formats may see these click-to-play video ads on their sites.

  • AdSense video distribution and sponsorship: We ran 2 pilots that allowed publishers to choose video channels (short-form video clips bundled with video ads) to display on their sites.
  • AdSense for Video pilot: This is what we’re announcing today – we’re extending AdSense to online video content. Publishers in this test will be able to define at what point in their videos that streaming video ads will appear.

If the test proves profitable, you can bet more publishers will want in on the AdSense video ad program. That will give Google a new challenge: building up an inventory of video advertisements for AdSense display.

We expect Google will keep a tight grip on the number of publishers involved until they can bring in enough advertisers willing to pay what should be a premium for video ad placement.