The Outlook for Mobile Video Ads

The next frontier for digital video is mobile, but the question is when it will take off. Rhythm NewMedia has just released a report that claims video advertising, while still small, continues to grow and offers a great comparison between the three different executions of it.
While all of the units offered in the report are interactive, there are different types of executions. Pre-roll appears when the app is launched or between screen changes, in-stream is the equivalent to a commercial break in regular video programing, and banner advertisements which launch video content. When looking at the numbers provided, it’s not a shock that in-stream holds a completion rate of 87 percent. Not all video advertisements allow the user to exit and even if they do many users are conditioned that they won’t actually be able to skip the ad.
What is interesting is that that Rhythm states that less-targeted wide range campaigns perform 22 percent better than single site campaigns. While Rhythm serves a large number of impressions, the report doesn’t list what the estimate is for the single site vs run of network, so while the change is  0.4 percent click-through rate, it still speaks volumes when every angle in advertising is focusing on advanced targeting.
There are some stats that back up common app best practices, like not placing a video ad at the launch of the app. A 13 percent decrease in completion rates back up that ads are better placed between content and not at the start of the app. And, of course, user-initiated ads hold a lower completion rate by up to 66 percent, but hold the greatest CTR at 7.2 percent. With user-initiated action holding such a high engagement rate, brands should continue to be committed to higher qualities of ad content along with providing a more enticing experience to convince the user to click on the banner and watch the video.
More video impressions are served to users playing games or browsing articles than those watching video directly. In-stream is only one of three formats and watching videos provides the user only access to that one. The other two, banner and pre-roll, are completely missed by that audience.
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