Upon announcing plans to introduce a bidding system whereby advertisers only pay for ads visible to users, the company said basing buying, selling and measuring media on a viewability basis could "help transform the digital marketplace". The Drum asked some industry figures what their views were on the announcement.
Rebecca Mahony, CMO, Ebuzzing
It’s great to see Google so publicly embracing viewability standards. This is something we have been wrestling with in the video industry. At Ebuzzing we ensure that all of our video are viewable and have just rolled out a new product called Double V. Double V goes further than Google and charges a brand when 100 per cent of the video has been viewed, and the video opens up into a full-screen HD experience which ensures that all views are truly genuine. Better viewability standards mean that brands will benefit from far greater engagement rates as only those who are the target audience and who have actually opted into the advertising will be engaging with the ads. Ultimately this will also be a boon for publishers as it will stop the fall in value of their inventory.
Chris Daines, head of the Exchange, Mindshare UK
This is a bold move by Google and it will be very interesting to see how the rest of the industry reacts. Viewability is an important topic at the moment and one that is likely to have a big impact on display advertising in general; should other networks offer similar buying options we are likely to see an increase in pricing across all buying points.
Mauricio Leon, commercial director, Performics
Viewability is very much a hot topic for advertisers and Google’s leadership position will no doubt inspire other networks and publishers to follow suit, bringing huge benefits to advertisers and agencies alike, as they look to drive greater results across digital display platforms. We may even see the move encourage greater levels of investment from brand advertisers more confident in their ads being seen across the internet. Ads being seen, not just served is definitely where the market needs to go and Google must be commended for taking this bold move during what is largely a consultative period around viewability. The next step is for the same structure to be extended across all channels including video and mobile and for independent data to be made available to advertisers similar to how ad serving is reconciled today.
Phil Macauley, European managing director, Quantcast
Advertisers are embracing viewability as it gives them more insights into their performance and allows for better optimisation of campaigns. So far, our tests indicate a 15-20 per cent average lift in conversions when optimising for viewability using Media Rating Council accredited technology.
Nick Reid, managing director of TubeMogul
Transparency and viewability have always been key for both the sell and buy side, and we've been leading the charge in this area by launching our Open VV video viewability initiative earlier this year, with 20 partners now on board. It's key for the industry to understand issues that face advertisers when it comes to buying video content that isn't transparently sold. “Fake pre-roll” is a perfect example of a conversation we are all forced to have, and should not have to, given what is possible in terms of transparent reporting. For our industry, it's key that a big name business gets on board and champions the need to create a more viable inventory ecosystem for advertisers to buy into.