Advanced Television

Online viewers more likely to view mid-roll ads

October 23, 2013

Akamai Technologies, a provider of cloud services, has published a scientific study that leveraged data from hundreds of millions of online videos and advertisements measured using the Akamai Sola Analytics media measurement and analysis product.

The study analysed in aggregate 367 million videos and 257 million ads from over 3,000 publishers that were viewed by 65 million unique users worldwide.

Among the key findings were:

  • The position of an ad has the single largest impact on completion rate, with a mid-roll ad 18.1 per cent more likely to be completed than the same ad as a pre-roll, and pre-rolls 14.3 per cent more likely to be completed than the same ad as a post-roll.
  • Repeat visitors to a site have higher completion rates for ads on that site than one-time visitors to that site.
  • Viewers are more tolerant of video ads than of slow-loading videos. Viewers who must wait 10 seconds for their video to load are three times more likely to abandon than users who spend the same amount time watching a pre-roll ad.
  • Users who abandon ads leave early. One-third of the abandoners leave at or before the quarter-way mark and two-thirds at or before the halfway mark in the ad.
  • Ads that play within long-form content such as TV episodes and movies complete at a higher rate (87 per cent) than those that play in short-form content such as news clips and sports highlights (67 per cent).
  • Time of day and day of week do not affect ad completion rates substantially.

“This study is unique in that it goes above and beyond tracking and comparing completion rates, and rather takes an in-depth look at when viewers complete watching video ads and when they abandon them,” said Ramesh K. Sitaraman, Akamai Fellow and computer science professor at UMass-Amherst, who led the study. “By using novel scientific techniques for extracting knowledge from huge amounts of anonymised viewer data, we are able to gain a deeper understanding of video ads that are key to the monetisation economics of online videos.”

Categories: Ads, Advertising, Articles, Consumer Behaviour, OTT, Research