Web videos attract ad dollars at Digital Content NewFronts

155912095BIZMOLOGY — The second annual Digital Content NewFronts, held April 29-May 3, 2013, are a forum for companies like AOL, Hulu, and Yahoo! to present new online videos with the hopes of attracting advertising dollars from marketers and agencies. The event is expected to generate $1 billion of investment, according to Adweek.

The NewFronts are a signal that marketers are beginning to recognize the importance of original digital video content and that digital video has become a regular extension of television programming (especially for younger audiences). Some 45 million US viewers — about 20 percent of all American adults — watch professionally produced video content monthly according to the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB).

The benefits of digital video advertising include interactivity, targetability, and a global audience. The proof is in the pudding. In 2012 advertisers spent $2.3 billion on digital video advertising, up 29 percent over 2011.

And the opportunity for more ad spending on digital video is there: The format accounts for only 6 percent of all Internet advertising, but as the audience for original digital video content grows, that share will likely increase. And audiences will surely grow as they increasingly rely on smartphones, tablets, and other devices to consume content.

So just what exactly is this content advertisers are hoping to benefit from? From Yahoo!’s “Losing Your Virginity with John Stamos” to AOL’s “#CandidlyNicole” (a reality show staring Nicole Richie), it appears as though cable television no longer corners the market on the riveting “reality” genre. 

Complementing the Digital Content NewFronts, Nielsen recently rolled out a tool to track online TV viewing and improve how digital audiences are measured. Such efforts will only help Internet content providers.

Industry Impact: Interest in premium, original content showcased at the second annual Digital Content NewFronts is expected to fuel future advertising investment in digital video.

Amy Schein

Amy Schein is an Industry Specialist at First Research, where she covers various aspects of the media industry. She earned her BS and MA in media studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Follow Amy on Twitter.

Read more articles by Amy Schein.

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