Are YouTube ads the new TV Commercials?

As TV continues to reinvent itself, YouTube aims to replicate a certain quality of it. YouTube viewers will now be fed two ads instead of just one before the videos they want to watch. YouTube has developed “ad pods.” The ad pods allow for a commercial break with two messages that can run before the video or in the middle of it.

What are Ad Pods?

 Ad pods play more commercials in succession while cutting down on the number of interruptions. For instance, four ads can be shown in two breaks. Before this change, they would have been shown in four separate breaks.

Ad pods come with a skippable ad followed by a six-second ad. And, if the viewer skips the first ad after five seconds, then the second ad won’t run either. The six-second non-skippable ad can also run before the skippable ad. Viewers might also encounter two six-second non-skippable ads.

Viewers will have the option to dismiss the ad pods during a video and opt for the older breaks format. For now, ad pods will only run on desktop. However, they will expand to all YouTube properties next year.

Is YouTube the next TV?

Jim Nail, an analyst with Forrester research, questions why online is trying to replicate the TV model that is chasing consumers away from TV.

YouTube is increasingly being watched on TV screens, a migration from mobile and desktop. With ad pods, YouTube is targeting TV ad buyers. YouTube is telling them they can help improve “reach and frequency,” the ability to hit more people in a brand’s target audience with more regularity.

YouTube is also investing in longer-form videos, including Hollywood movies, which are now shown free with ads.

On digital platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, viewers are used to no commercial breaks. If ad pods do not diminish the user experience, YouTube will continue to use ad pods and advertisers will buy the space. For those who can’t tolerate YouTube ads, there is always the option of paying the $10 ad-free monthly subscription.

According to eMarketer, YouTube will generate $3.4 billion in ad revenue this year. This is an increase of 17 percent from 2017. Digital video advertising as a whole continues to grow 30% each year. This year it reached $27.8 billion, a figure that is 25% of the entire digital ad market in the U.S.

The question is “ Can YouTube get consumers to accept ads in places they don’t want?”