YouTube debuts unskippable six-second ad format

27/04/2016

YouTube has launched “Bumper Ads”, a lightweight, 6 second, non-skippable in-stream ad unit bought via AdWords and designed to drive awareness and reach.

The new format will complement YouTube’s flagship product, TrueView ads, to help brands reinforce the message or share a short ad.

Recent research has shown that half of 18-49 year olds turn to their mobile device first to watch video.

Even in the living room, many people prefer to watch on their smartphone – for the control, personalization and ease it offers. And as viewing habits change, we are working to introduce new formats adapted to these habits.

Bumper ads are sold through the AdWords auction on a CPM basis and are designed for driving wide reach and frequency, especially on mobile, where “snackable videos” perform well.

Given the succinct nature of the format, we’ve seen Bumper ads work best when combined with a TrueView or Google Preferred campaign. In early tests, Bumpers drove strong lift in upper funnel metrics like recall, awareness and consideration – complementing TrueView’s strength in driving middle and lower funnel metrics like favorability and purchase intent. We also see that Bumpers work well to drive incremental reach and frequency when paired with a TrueView campaign.

Atlantic Records was an early tester of this new format, using Bumpers to launch English band Rudimental’s second album.

Fiona Byers, Senior Marketing Manager of Atlantic Records/Warner Music Group said, “TrueView and Bumpers were a really important part of the recent Rudimental campaign to tell the story of the band’s second album. Through cost-efficient bumpers we could really showcase the plethora of legendary guests featured on the record. They each gave a short sharp insight into a featured artist and individual track on the album, with TrueView providing the fuller story around the album and the band. When used in conjunction, TrueView plus Bumpers really work more effectively than either format on its own.”

As a quick and fun format, Bumpers lend themselves well to serialized content. Audi Germany cut up their longer TrueView ad to introduce their Q-series SUVs with evocative German “q” words like querpass (cross kick) and quantensprung (quantum leap).

Their early adoption of the format mirrors Audi Germany’s tagline “Vorsprung durch Technik” (“advantage through technology”).

We like to think of Bumper ads as little haikus of video ads – and we’re excited to see what the creative community will do with them. You can use Bumpers beginning in May by talking to your Google sales representative, and stay tuned as we continue to roll out new ad formats that are uniquely adapted to the way people watch video now, and in the future.

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