nScreenMedia OTT multiscreen media analysis

Balancing customer experience and revenue for ad-supported video

Online video providers strive to provide the best experience and, at the same time, maximize revenue. This is challenging in a multiscreen world, where more than half of the audience is using an ad blocker. This webinar discusses these challenges, and how serverside ad insertion is key to balancing revenue generation and customer experience.

In this webinar Anil Jain, SVP and GM of Brightcove, and Colin Dixon, Founder and Chief Analyst of nScreenMedia, discuss the three main challenges ad supported online providers face in balancing a great experience against maximizing revenue. The challenges he discusses are:

  • Maximizing ad delivery across multi-platform video experiences
  • Ensuring a quality playback experience
  • The rise of ad blockers

Mr. Jain explains how switching from clientside ad insertion, the most common method of delivering ads today, to serverside insertion helps with all three problems.

He explains that having the streaming server insert the ads greatly simplifies the process of video delivery. This has a number of immediate benefits. The apps that the video provider must create to deliver the service are simpler; making them easier to write, port to other platforms, and maintain. With simpler apps, less performant devices, like older smartphones and tablets, can access the service without experiencing buffering delays. This helps maximize revenue by increasing the number of people that will see the ads.

Doing the ad insertion on the server also improves the playback experience for all. With clientside ad insertion the client has to switch from the streaming server to the ad server during ad breaks. This introduces potential delays and problems with the video quality changing abruptly. Doing the ad insertion at video streaming server helps ensure a smooth, high quality playback experience.

ad blocker user in the USThe use of ad blockers has become a huge problem for the media industry in general, and video providers in particular. 41% of US Internet users have installed an ad blocker in their browsers. In the 18-24 year olds the problem is even worse, with 63% using ad blockers. When people in this group watch online video the blocker is so effective they might not even be aware that the provider intended ads to part of the experience!

Ad blockers typically rely on clientside ad insertion to remove the ads. Inserting the ad at the streaming server defeats the most commonly used ad blockers. Mr. Jain discusses how Brightcove Lift serverside ad insertion product helped Vox Media monetize its service more effectively, while at the same time improving the quality of the experience.

Why it matters

Clientside ad insertion approaches increase the complexity of video apps and decrease the reliability of video playback.

Using serverside ad insertion can reduce app complexity and increase video playback reliability.

Serverside insertion also helps maximize ad revenue by increasing the number of people that can use the service and decreasing the effectiveness of ad blockers.

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