Hover-to-Play Replaces Click-to-Play: Changes to Video Ads on Google Display Network

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Hover-to-Play Replaces Click-to-Play: Changes to Video Ads on Google Display Network


Posted by Sami Dilaveri, Senior Account Manager Google has changed the format for video ads targeted on Google Display Network (GDN) by replacing the Click-to-Play option with what’s now called Hover-to-Play. The new option allows advertisers to use the same video and image assets, as well as targeting capabilities across GDN. shutterstock_119375095 What’s changed? Pricing is now based on a cost per engagement model, an engagement being defined as a participant hovering over the ad for 2-seconds, instead of the old cost per click model. Additionally, advertisers are now required to add a call to action to the ad image displayed before the video is played, for example “Hover to Play” or “Hover to Expand”. The Adwords interface will provide similar reporting to Click-to-Play, however with the new format, clicks, cost per clicks, and click through rate will refer to engagements. Actual click-through to the landing page will be available in the Dimensions tab. Implications Hover-to-Play will potentially provide a traffic increase for advertisers serving video ads on GDN, however the concern is with the quality of the traffic and overall efficiency of the campaigns due to the change in the pricing model. In my opinion, the user error in unintentionally hovering over an ad unit for 2-seconds is higher than unintentionally clicking through. Expected average cost per engagement will likely be lower than the current average cost per click but, as always, this will vary by advertiser so it’s recommended to benchmark current efficiency, test, and closely monitor results. Timeline Hover-to-Play engagement ads are currently available in Adwords in place of Click-to-Play for any newly launched ads. An official date for sun-setting active Click-to-Play ads has not been announced. See below for more information on Google Engagement Ads: Google Engagement Ads Product Page Engagement Ads Policy and Specs


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