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Google Beta Tests

Google Adwords New Video Ad Format trialled by Bridesmaids called Media Ads

A few months ago Google began beta-testing Video Ad Extensions for Adwords as reported by the Big PPC Geek back in Nov. This format has been used mostly for movie trailers in the UK but the in the US advertisers have been more adventurous – using the format for demonstrations of products, TV ads and how to videos. The format was charged based on the same text ad CPC once the video had been watched for 10 secs.

Today I noticed this new video format called a ‘Media Ad’:

Video Adwords Media Ad

The Adwords ad includes a thumbnail much like the Yahoo Rich Ads format. As normal, the headline clicks through to the landing page which is a Facebook page in this case. There are not 2 traditional lines of a text however – instead what looks like a specialised film text format with the time and genre listing in grey and then one additional line of text copy ‘Save the Date’. There is an additional hyperlink at the bottom of the ad which together with the thumbnail itself causes the video to expand out and take over the search results page in a lightbox format:

Adwords Media Ad for Bridesmaids

Throughout the video, there is a link that states ‘Visit the official site’ at the bottom and this actually also goes through to the Facebook page.

Google describe this as separate from Video Ad Extensions as it actually attaches a media player to the ad and is therefore called a ‘Media Ad’ and is a completely new ad format.

What’s Interesting About This Format?

The video takes over the whole results page – this potentially points to the plus box ad extension-type video ad was not working for Google in the sense that they were either not making enough money from it as users did not want to watch more than 10 secs of it and so this format, by taking over the whole page, almost obliges the user to watch and not start clicking elsewhere.

The lack of ad copy and the specialised film listing of the run time and genre – this echoes the organic/instant answers film format of Google for movies demonstrating how Google is bringing natural search features into the paid space – this is likely to be as a result of demand from Adwords clients. Google provide so much info and additional content as part of Universal Search but the problem is that advertisers see this as in direct competition with their ads, therefore Google must make concessions to them or else lose out on the profit they make from Adwords as advertisers will eventually concede.

How Does It Work?

The format is actually non-keyword based (I’m not sure how comfortable advertisers will be with this format as they like to have control over keywords they appear against). The Media Ad has a flat fee (non-biddable format) and the Google algorithm decides if a users query is relevant to display the ad.The ad text is populated automatically, often using existing ad copy in the Adwords account.

Google’s market is initially movies as most users are searching for the trailer when they search on new movies and therefore this provides the advertiser an opportunity to get their trailers to the user quickly and at the first touchpoint. Google are also open to using this format on other entertainment sector advertisers. I imagine Google will expand out further though.

Google Blog Post




  1. Pingback: Google Adwords Media Ads Moving On « Big PPC Geek - June 30, 2012

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