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5 Winning Ad Formats for Video Advertising in 2021

Oct 01, 2020  ·  10 min read
Kate Novatska
Kate Novatska, Marketing expert at Epom

As video advertising has become more mainstream than ever, video ads are going to play a more crucial role in most marketing strategies. This is what 92% of marketers believe. This is also the reason that 99% of marketers will continue using video marketing in 2020.

Going by the stats, we believe that the craze for videos will not stop anytime soon, especially in 2021 when people are expected to watch 100 minutes a day of online videos, which is about a 19% increase when compared to the daily viewing minutes in 2019.

Aren't these stats important enough to notch up your video advertising game? Yes. And guess what? You are in for a surprise. To help you master video ad serving like a pro, in this article, we will be discussing the best formats for video advertising.

Contents:

#1. Outstream Video Ads

Outstream Video Ads

An outstream video ad is a newcomer to the world of online video ad units, and chances are high that you may not have heard of them.

For starters, these ads are also called interstitials, in-read, in-feed, or native video ads. Although they are categorized as video ads, these ad formats do not show up in a video environment. Google describes these ads to be the ones that have no sound.

Do you remember that one article you were reading on forbes.com, and a video ad appeared sneakily on the left corner of your laptop screen? Well, that's a classy example of outstream video ads and forbes.com has a lot of them. And it is not just about your favorite news outlet, even Facebook features them. The autoplay silent video feature on Facebook is nothing but an example of outstream video ads.

Do you know the best part of outstream video ad formats? They can be run anywhere you want. Top right corner, sidebar - anywhere.

For the curious heads, this video ad format is called outstream because the video ads are not dependent on online video content - instead, they exist outside of them. You don't even need to have a video player on your page to display these ads.

And perhaps the best part, as you scroll down the screen, these ads will pause. And as you make your way up, they will resume. Interesting, right?

Pros

  • These ads can be monetized easily. You don't even need to have video content on your page to sell video ad placements. You can utilize every part of your web page instead.
  • Advertisers don't have to worry if their videos are being watched by the target audience. Since these video ads only play when they are 100% in-view, they are paused as the user scrolls down and resumes only when they scroll back up.
  • Studies have revealed that outstream video ads are watched 25% longer when compared to instream.
  • Advertisers are billed only when their video ads are watched for a certain duration, let's say 30 seconds.

Cons

  • As outstream video ads are new entrants, there is a bit of chaos on how to track their ROI. This is because many platforms lack adequate outstream analytics.
  • They are not very popular in the marketplace and there is confusion on how to offer the best placements to advertisers.

#2. Rewarded Video Ads

Rewarded Video Ads

Now we come to our favorite video ad format.

As the name indicates, rewarded video ads are the ones that a user can choose to watch in exchange for some incentive. Remember that extra HP or extra gems in the game which you earned after watching a video ad? Oh yes, that's what a rewarded video ad is.

Since a user can choose to watch these ads or skip, these video ads do not prove to be a burden for the viewers, and this is how they prove to be a win-win deal for both parties involved - users and advertisers. What's more, these video ads are also expected to have better engagement with 79% of mobile players claiming that they prefer rewarded ads over any other ad type.

Pros

  • Rewarded ads are always accompanied by a related incentive, and so they prove to be engaging.
  • These ads are not autoplayed unless the user chooses to watch them. And since these ads are often served when the user is out of energy/HP/coins in their favorite game, they are more likely to watch it. This boosts their retention rates.
  • These ads are integrated when the user is looking for incentives, advertisers can rest assured that these ads do not attract false clicks and that the user is genuinely interested in the offering.

Cons

  • Although these ads have a high engagement rate, sometimes potential customers are only concerned about the associated incentive. This could defeat the entire purpose of running your ad.

#3. Bumper Video Pre Rolls

Bumper Video Pre Rolls

Put yourself in the shoes of your viewers and you will agree that ads should be shorter, and crispier. While most of the time you might have an idea of what you would like to watch, other times you just want to scroll and watch one video or two to pass time. Bumper ads are built for this very purpose. They are a six-second video format to enhance your brand reach.

Have you come across those short video ads on YouTube that you absolutely love - like you can watch them quickly and go back to your video? They are bumper ads, just six seconds, and still convey a lot. If used wisely, they can etch your brand into the minds of your target audiences.

According to a survey conducted by Think With Google over 300 bumper campaigns, 90% of these ads drove a significant lift in ad recall.

Pros

  • Bumper ads are highly effective in both terms of affordability and the number of impressions. These ads are charged on a CPM basis, and since Google uses cost-per-thousand-impressions to calculate the cost, you are charged when your ad is displayed 1000 times. Since users can't skip these ads, you can make the best use of these ads to leave an affordable, lasting impact on your viewers.
  • These ads deliver a high recall and promote your brand without irritating the viewer.
  • These ads are run by Google and can be easily set up on YouTube with your AdSense account.

Cons

  • Although bumper ads help you in boosting brand awareness, tracking conversions can be tricky with them.
  • Segmenting your campaign and crafting it engagingly is a challenge, as a poorly laid-out campaign may not provide the desired traction.

#4. CTV-Compatible Ad Formats

CTV-Compatible Ad Formats

CTV stands for connected TV. These are television sets that are connected to the internet either wirelessly or through a wired Ethernet cable. CTV-compatible ad formats are the kind of video marketing that is distributed on streaming media over the internet. Okay, so what is OTT? OTT platforms are gadgets and services that are used to stream ads (think of HDMI sticks, game consoles, streaming boxes, and the like).

These ad formats can reach a wide number of audiences as streaming services have become popular. Furthermore, they also help in strong targeting based on the targeted geographic areas and taste of the target audiences.

Pros

  • Major OTT platforms provide in-depth data analytics services for their products that help advertisers tick the right boxes.
  • Since CTV-compatible advertisements can be tracked efficiently in terms of the number of views, they can be more accurately budgeted.

Cons

  • OTT advertising is still in its nascent stage and needs guidelines for smooth implementation.
  • This form of advertising lacks features like cookie and flash support.

#5. Facebook and Instagram Stories Ads

Facebook and Instagram Stories Ads

Highly likely, you've already encountered them while scrolling your stories feed. These stories are full-screen and vertical - such that when one story ends (it could end on its own or you can manually swipe through), the next one begins. And this is when you can place your story ad.

The best part of story ads is that they are easy to get started. You don't even need to have a website. You can get started with your Facebook page. You can simply boost your post, or customize the existing template using Facebook Ads Manager. What's more, you also get to access the terabytes of Facebook data for easy targeting and creating lookalike audiences that are generated by the network's AI algorithms.

The biggest plus of story ads is the high level of personalization (as users provide a ton of data about their interests on Instagram), Further, as stories creation and consumption are increasing year by year, it makes sense to run ads where your audiences are.

The only way to differentiate between an organic story and a story ad is from the sponsored denotation. That said, these ads are highly effective. According to Instagram, a popular North American faucet brand, MOEN, saw a 45% increase in impressions through stories ads.

Pros

  • When compared to the engagement rate across different social media platforms, story ads feature a relatively high engagement rate.
  • These ads are effective and can be used to include links, and clickable CTAs creatively.

Cons

  • Instagram stories ads, similar to stories, last for a short while. Once you have watched them, they are gone.

As you can see, the video advertising industry is growing at a rapid rate. With new ad formats popping up left and right, it makes sense to get yourself acquainted with the latest advancements and update your video marketing strategy accordingly.

The only thing that might be missing in your advertising strategy is the potent tool that supports all these ad formats and provides templates for hassle-free ad serving. Wonder what is this? Welcome: a video ad server.

A video ad server is a tool that allows you to serve video ads using VAST, VMAP, or VPAID-compliant video tags. The range of video ad units you can use in advanced ad servers like Epom is almost unlimited, especially if they support custom and non-standard rich media ad formats. Even though video ad serving is a bit more complex than average banners, we provide templates to make your life easier and spare you from coding.

Get 7.5x higher CTR than for your banner campaigns with a powerful video ad server. Sign up to request your free 14-day trial!

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