20 February 2010 615 Views

Pre-Roll Ads May Affect Viral Videos

by Alex Gerage

If you are one of many who find the 15 second pre-roll advertisements placed before online videos increasingly annoying, chances are you’re about to get a little more peeved. Jim Louderback at Advertising Age has an informative assessment on the bottom line success of pre-roll ads, and why this traditional advertising tactic has made a seamless transition to new media. Find out more after the jump.

Louderback’s article does a good job explaining why the pre-roll is, in many ways, becoming a new standard in online advertising. Recent trends have shown pre-rolls are not only enjoying an increased presence preceding online video like TV shows, but the media has also infiltrated major online gaming websites. Furthermore, Louderback’s most important analysis comes when he discusses the implications of the pre-roll trend on viral videos:

“Unfortunately, I’m afraid they also depress video sharing and snacking — which is ultimately how a video goes viral, and how new creators build audiences. We’ll soon find out whether this is true, because it appears that YouTube will put pre-rolls on many of their more popular producers as well, including the ones that benefit most from virality.”



I agree with his assessment that pre-rolls might negatively impact the future of viral videos. Are people going to be willing to wait an additional 15 seconds to watch a 10 second YouTube clip? As minimal as it sounds, I don’t think so. At least not at the rate videos are currently consumed. The focus then will be placed back on content creators to convey a message that communicates their video as being so vital to watch, it is worth waiting through advertisements.


How do you feel about the impending expansion of pre-roll ads? Will they affect your online video consumption habits? Voice your opinions in the comments section below.



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