YouTube launches ‘snackable’ video ads in bid to lure in viewers

YouTube is launching a six-second ad format for mobile in a bid to adapt to changing consumer viewing habits and grab the attention of consumers who prefer watching videos on their phones.


The new Bumper ad feature, which features a six-second video format and will launch in May, was developed after brand research found that 50% of 18 to 49-year-olds turn to mobile to watch videos.

In a blog statement, YouTube parent Google says: “Even in the living room, many people prefer to watch on their smartphone – for the control, personalisation and ease it offers. And as viewing habits change, we are working to introduce new formats adapted to these habits.”

Google goes on to say the new Bumper ads are “ideal” for driving wide reach and frequency, particularly on mobile where “snackable videos” perform well.

According to the tech giant, Bumpers drove strong lift in metrics like recall, awareness and consideration in early tests. Bumpers can also be used as a format to showcase serialised content.

Atlantic Records was an early tester of this new ad feature, using Bumpers to launch English band Rudimental’s second album. Meanwhile, Audi Germany cut up its longer TrueView ad to introduce its new SUVs through shorter video clips.

Fiona Byers, senior marketing manager of Atlantic Records and Warner Music Group says: “Through bumpers we could really showcase the plethora of legendary guests featured on the record. They each gave a short sharp insight into a featured artist and individual track on the album, with TrueView providing the fuller story around the album and the band.”

Google concludes: “We like to think of Bumper ads as little haikus of video ads – and we’re excited to see what the creative community will do with them.”

Google is not the only one promoting the use of shorter ads on mobile. Nick Bell, content VP of Snapchat said at Advertising Week Europe last week that brand research found that 50% of people who are forced to watch an ad built up negative sentiment towards a brand.

“This concept of watching [ads] to completion is something that is overplayed in the market place. Just because I’ve created a 30-second TV spot, doesn’t mean that that’s the optimum amount of time for a user to have viewed the content,” he explained.

“A lot of research in the market place shows that attention spans, particularly on mobile, are much lower. Getting the message across in four, five, six seconds is far more powerful than stretching out content. We’re certainly seeing that with our media partners.”

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