On May 17, YouTube (Google) announced some innovations in connection with advertising. The video platform will soon introduce 30-second ads in its traditional free service but will not include them in its paid option. It will not be possible for users to skip the ads. In addition, it will start testing “pause experiences”, which consist in showing an ad when the viewer pauses a video. The announcements were made at YouTube Upfront 2023, which was held at Lincoln Center in New York City.

The 30-second non-skips will be shown only on Connected TVs (CTVs) and on YouTube Select videos, a category offered to advertisers that includes just 5% of the platform’s most viewed content. Within this category, the OTT had been offering up to two consecutive non-skippable 15-second ads. According to the company, longer ads will allow for “richer storytelling”. The new ad unit will be available first in the United States, before expanding to the rest of the world later this year.

As regards pause experiences, YouTube noted that they would be launched as an “experiment”. They will be visual, rather than audiovisual ads.

Finally, YouTube CEO Neal Mohan highlighted: “Our teams are already using artificial intelligence to get ads in front of the right audiences.”

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