At CES 2015, Google says it will be telling advertisers when their ads actually get seen

Google Inc. has announced it’ll be making the impact of video advertising more transparent for marketers, alerting them to whether audiences have actually seen their ads.

At CES in Las Vegas on Tuesday, Google said it would be giving marketers and advertisers access to “viewability reporting” for DoubleClick and DoubleClick Ad Exchange in the next few weeks. For platforms like YouTube, the idea is that marketers will now be able to see whether their video ads were actually watched, instead of being displayed off-screen or skipped by a consumer. The definition of “video viewability” means that 50 per cent of the video is on-screen for two seconds or longer, according to the U.S. Media Ratings Council, Google said.

In the next few weeks, Google’s viewability reporting capability will also be extended to reserved inventory on YouTube, allowing marketers to track who’s viewing their videos via desktops and mobile apps. And in the next few months, Google will also allow marketers to be able to do targeting for viewable impressions using DoubleClick, and to buy solely viewable impressions on the Google Display Network.

“When it comes to impact, being seen is not just important, it’s fundamental. That’s why this time last year, we set a goal for ourselves to help make viewability a common currency across the industry,” wrote Neal Mohan, Google’s vice-president of video and display advertising, in a blog post.

The search giant will also take things a step further later this year by pushing a similar feature to audio, allowing marketers to be able to see whether their video ads were heard.

Right now, most marketers rely upon impressions as a key metric for display advertising, as they want to know how many pairs of eyeballs have seen their ads. However, impressions alone don’t tell them whether their video ads are having any effect, especially when the videos are displayed alongside text within a web browser or mobile app, so it’s a step forward for marketers to be able to tell if their video ads are getting any viewability love.

It also helps them build more trust – something that’ll be key in the future as Google tries to on-board more advertisers for its digital video advertising services.

Aside from the update on its viewability policies for its ad platforms, Google also announced it has now signed more than 30 major broadcast and publisher brands to its Google Partner Select program, which it rolled out in June 2014.

The program allows advertisers to tap into programmatic ad buying for video inventory from publishers like CBS Interactive, Fox News, Discovery, Animal Planet, TLC, HGTV, the Food Network, and Rolling Stone. Major advertisers include Allstate, BMW, and Netflix, and they’ve signed commitments to buy inventory through Google Partner Select, the company reported.

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Candice So
Candice So
Candice is a graduate of Carleton University and has worked in several newsrooms as a freelance reporter and intern, including the Edmonton Journal, the Ottawa Citizen, the Globe and Mail, and the Windsor Star. Candice is a dog lover and a coffee drinker.

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