The popularity of mid-roll video ads is growing, and the format is taking share away from pre-roll ads. That’s one finding from online video platform Ooyala’s Q3 2016 Global Video Index. Early in 2015, the report says, pre-rolls made up 75 percent of video ad inventory. In Q3 2016, that share dropped to 60 percent.
Advertisers love mid-rolls because the viewer will already have watched several minutes of a premium program and is more likely to sit through the ad. Ooyala finds the highest mid-roll completion rates with broadcaster content viewed on computers and connected TVs, and the lowest on publisher content viewed on phones.
That doesn’t mean buying mid-rolls is foolproof, however. Ooyala cautions it’s important to study viewer drop off rates to learn what are appropriate ad loads. It’s also important to show a variety of ads during each program, so viewers don’t see the same one or two ads over and over.
Ooyala found views for mid- to long-from content grew across all screens in Q3, including phones, tablets, computers, and connected TVs. This is the first time this has happened. While the common wisdom used to be that viewers would watch short-form content on phones or tablets, but preferred larger screens for longer videos, this shows an evolution in how people enjoy premium content.
Larger screens still see more mid- or long-form viewing. The report notes that phone viewers spent 48 percent of their viewing time with mid- or long-form video, while desktop viewers spent 57 percent of their time. Connected TV viewers streamed almost exclusively long-from video, watching it 97 percent of the time.
“Tablets remain an ideal format for delivering premium content in a more personal manner, but even smartphones are regularly used to view episodic television and movies, as their 36 percent increase in medium- and long-form plays attest,” notes the report’s section on European viewing habits.
Ooyala’s Global Video Index examines viewing data for 220 million global viewers. Download the full report for free (registration required).