Online Video Ads & Targeting

Dan Rayburn writes about the poor targeting of online video ads. I think the problem is that the revenue flowing into online-video is going through media buyers. Media buyers look for reach, frequency, and price.

While Rayburn shouldn’t be seeing ads for female razors, the targeting and placement shouldn’t be about registered users and IAB-approved ad units.

I like the deals that involve more than display, and have a creator interact with the brand. The creator has a giant fan base… a tribe. He’s introducing the brand to that tribe. It’s not a stupid animated banner barking for my attention or making me wait for a video to load.

May I change the model, please?

  • Instead of 1) make product, 2) find ideal buyer, 3) shove the ads up their ass until they buy.
  • How about 1) identify large, tight, influential groups that associate via online video, 2) seek products that fit their interests and needs, 3) have the leader of those groups mention them.

For crying out loud, we’ve become advertisement jaded and we’re in a recession. I’m not buying something because of seven targeted ads, I’m buying it because someone I trust endorsed it.

80 Replies to “Online Video Ads & Targeting”

  1. hey nalts, do you trust me? An adorable average sized teenage male with a desire to repla- er – join you at on the most subscribed list?

    In that case, boy, have I got a deal for you! I call it “stock for the future of Brindle”. You see, you buy this, and it’s basically saying “I support Brindle, and I want to encourage his growth as a videographer, and his educational growth.” It’s easy, it’s near free (you pay with your time), and, most important of all, it’s a (click) away!

    When you click, you will be taken to Brindle’s youtube channel page. There, you may view Brindle’s videos, and, if you like his videos, you may choose to subscribe to him.

    Thank you for buying stock for the future of Brindle

  2. “For crying out loud, we’ve become advertisement jaded and we’re in a recession. I’m not buying something because of seven targeted ads, I’m buying it because someone I trust endorsed it.”

    no one listens to me
    no one

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  4. “I like the deals that involve more than display, and have a creator interact with the brand. The creator has a giant fan base… a tribe. He’s introducing the brand to that tribe.”

    I like deals like that too… And deals like that are better for the Brands in the long run, because it takes fewer of them to work. But what about creators who don’t have a Nalts-sized fan base? What’s the strategy for us creatives who do top-notch work, but don’t have the audience?

    A hypothetical: What do you think of the idea of uploading someone else’s brand-oriented advertising on your channel?

  5. “For crying out loud, we’ve become advertisement jaded and we’re in a recession. I’m not buying something because of seven targeted ads, I’m buying it because someone I trust endorsed it.”

    You’re still buying stuff?

  6. Most people dislike online ads to begin with, for one reason or another. Ask yourself this, would you have ever watched hooking up if the YT stars hadn’t endorsed it? Would you have ever bought Paper Towns if not for the vlogbrothers? Would you have ever heard Pull Shapes if not for Buck? Simple proof that creators can influence the cultural choices their viewers make.

  7. The big advertising agencies have just asked Nancy Pelosi’s giveaway congress for a 30 billion dollar bailout with no strings attached. She’ll push it through. Congratulations, taxpayers, you just bought a bunch of bad advertising.

  8. I think we just wanted to see if when we voted, it actually had any bearing over who got in.

    Perhaps we the people can do other things with this newfound power.

  9. It’s what I’ve said all along. I agree.

    Now, since the political campaigns are all over, and most folks have recovered from their presidential victory/defeat hangovers, I’d like to point out that those campaign dollars you were budgeting can still have a home, even after the election.

    For every dollar you paypal to the “Keep Jim alive and fed” campaign, one moderately amusing young adult will be a step closer to staying alive AND fed. If that’s not appealing enough, because there are no federal limits to contributions to our fund, you don’t have to be sneaky and donate in the names of all your family, friends, and pets. You can just bundle up that one lump sum and send it to us.

    For those concerned about fund mis-use, there is also an option to designate your funds to one of our two specific needs – Keeping Jim alive, and Keeping Jim fed. Just mark which one you would prefer your funds go to, and that’s exactly how they’ll be spent.

    So all you big political givers out there, remember: The elections might be over, but your generosity doesn’t have to be.

  10. All blatant begging for campaign dollars aside, I do have a genuine contribution on this topic.

    For online video advertising to work, there needs to be a paradigm shift in how advertisers place their ads.

    The trouble with the current ad model is that it’s the same one they’ve used for years on the pre-web2.0, largely text-based Internet. And this actually makes sense in a way. After all, it took years for marketers to figure out what works and what doesn’t in the text-dominant Internet. Even in 2008, some marketers are still making mistakes in their approach. (Has ANYONE ever really clicked a pop-up ad? Get a clue!) So it’s natural to stick to what you know

    The problem with this approach is that in today’s online world, the focus has shifted from reading text to watching video. The funny thing that most people will never think about is that the part of our brain that translates motion pictures (such as online video) is not the same part of our brain that translates text off a page. What this means for advertisers is that while the current standard advertising method appeals quite nicely to our brains for text, by applying it that method to video you’re effectively trying to energize a portion of the brain that’s not being actively used to watch moving pictures. Has anyone here ever tried to shift from first gear into reverse? Not a pretty picture.

    So what’s the solution? Well, there are a couple ideas. One – advertisers could stick to their current ad methods, and only advertise on videos that incorporate large sums of text into them (thus keeping both areas of your brain active). Or they could rethink how they advertise.

    Here’s an example. My wife and I were watching a rerun of Law & Order SVU a couple weeks ago. In the show, Elliot was sitting in a kitchen, and behind him, you could see all the popular kitchen staples – Bread, dish soap by the sink, flour, and Salt. But here’s what got my attention: The bread, soap, and flour were all generic brandless stage prop containers, but the Salt was clearly a blue Morton Salt container. Because it was the only “real” item on the set, it caught my focus, and now, weeks later, I can’t remember the plot in that episode, and I can’t remember one single ad that was played, but I can still remember that they used Morton salt.

    What’s my point? You can place ads near a video. You can even place related videos in as inset ads, but the bottom line is that if you want to get people’s attention, the best way to do that is to tie into content creators, and get them to incorporate your product into their videos.

    Advertisers who want to be seen aught to contact creators directly, and they aught to be willing to pay more than what they’re giving google to pimp their ads. Not only will the ads be more relevant, but they’ll also build the trust of the content creator’s viewers.

    Now, will someone PLEASE advertise with me? 😀

  11. Ewww! I just released a fart bubble! You know what I mean…not a fart, but a fart bubble.

    Like when your jeans are so damn tight that the bubble flows from your ass through the ,murky, skin-tight, barrier of denim, then is released at the waistline. Funky, I tell ya.

  12. The lady put two one liter bottles of Pepsi on the counter and asked for a pack of Newports Box. I asked to see the lady’s ID.

    “I ain’t got no ID right now.”

    “I’m sorry, I can’t sell you . . .”

    “WHAT!!? I comes here every day!”

    “I’m sorry.”

    “Nobody ever asked for my ID BEFORE!”

    “I’m sorry. Really. I need to see . . .”

    “I HEARD you! What you think? I can’t hear? You stupid or somethin’? You mean you’re NOT gonna sell me no MUTHERFUKEN CIGARETTES?”

    “I’m sorry . . .”

    The lady huffed out of the store, leaving the Pepsis on the counter, muttering soto voce something about crackers. Ten minutes later, she was back at the counter with her ID, fuming and ready for a scrap.

    “Now gimme my gawddamned Newports,” she barked as she slapped her ID down on the counter. After checking her ID quickly, I scanned the Newports and pushed them up against the sodas I had saved for her.

    “I seen you selling that other lady cigarettes without asking for ID,” she accused. “Why you didn’t ask HER for ID?”

    “She didn’t look as young as you . . .” I tried to flatter her.

    “That’s bull! You ask ME for ID, you gotta ask EVERYONE for ID!” A line of customers was forming behind this short, youngish-looking but angry lady.

    “I’m sorry . . .”

    “Sorry don’ cut it. I’m feeling discriminated against,” she declared. People behind her were juggling their purchases for a better grip while waiting for the lady to leave.

    “Ma’am, it’s nothing personal . . .”

    “Yes it is! I’m feeling like discrimination! You have to ask EVERYB—”

    “I’m sorr—”

    “This is discrimi—”

    “Ma’am, you’re disrupting the business and insulting me. Can we let the other customers do their bus—”

    “WHA? I’m talking ’bout discrimination! You better jus—”


    That was a couple of weeks ago. They don’t let me behind the counter much anymore. Better for them. Better for me.

  13. @25,

    My last day at my old job was yesterday, and I’m not 100% sure that the company that wants to hire me is going to hire me now, due to an issue on their end. I’d love to know I could get back behind the counter soon. I’m starting to feel a little like Mark Papermaster here.

  14. @28

    I would to get out from behind a desk in my job, I’ve been sitting in one (though, granted, it changes like every hour for the past 3 years, every 2 hours for 4 years before that, and not changing at all for 5 years before that) for pretty much the entire time I’ve been at that job.

  15. I don’t miss the job of “gettin’ an education” one bit. Graduating is a wonderful experience I reccomend to anyone.

    Of course, I probably need to go back to school one of these days to ramp it up a bit. In the 21st century, it doesn’t matter how smart you are, without at least a bachelor’s degree virtually no employer takes you seriously.

  16. @27
    When 911 happened, the Iranian owner of an Arco gas station realized he only had Arabic employees and hired me off the street as the token white to keep folks from throwing rocks at his station. He never said I couldn’t throw rocks at his customers. Well, he drew the line when I threw punches at one of his employees behind the counter, but he didn’t fire me because that employee had it coming.
    There are WAAAAY more than two. This is a fractionalized country, a bonfire of the vanities. I cover the parts y’all may be afraid to go to.

  17. @29: An education is a wonderful thing. I consider myself a life-long learner. I take a new class or two every year to keep my skills sharp, as well as several workshops and conferences a year. I love to learn.

  18. @33

    I am with you on that. I love the learning process. I just hated the other petty high school kids. (It ain’t easy being the fat kid with a high IQ and a membership in the Chess, Computer, and Bible clubs)

    College is great. I started classes and fell in love with it. Then my mom got sick, and I dropped out so I could help us stay in our house while she was recovering. I never regret that, but I wish I could have kept going.

    I have audited classes left and right since then. If I could get credit for auditing, I’d probably have a masters degree by now. Alas, the schools would rather give degrees to the losers who don’t care with the parents paying their full ride than the dirt poor guy who sits in and learns but can only afford to pay the auditing fee because the school charges way too much money (not nearly enough of which ever makes it to the people who actually do the educating). But I’m rambling.

    Bottom line brindle, once you escape High School, go to college. If you’ve got the parents or grants that will pay your way through, take it seriously, and make something of yourself. When you’re done doing that, meet me in my cardboard box behind the library (the heat exhausts there keep it warm at night) and you can pay my $12k consultation fee. 😀

  19. @31 I’m tired of the dark underbelly, politics, and everything ugly. From now on I’m going back to the bright side of life, even if that means I have to read the secret. Life’s too damn short and I got me some livin’ to do! Who’s with me here?

    yes we can
    yes we can
    yes we can

  20. @33

    not saying I don’t enjoy school, get rid of the sitting at a desk all day part (some of the day is nice), add a (higher) pay, and I would be almost perfectly happy to spend my entire life at school.
    almost perfectly happy because the hacker in me likes to actually do stuff. Which is why I’m applying to places like CalTech and MIT, you get to do stuff.

    When I pay off whatever debt I will have, I’ll certainly send you some money… if you’re still alive by then, I might not even be alive by the time I pay off my debt though.

  21. I love to learn, too, and I’m always sadly amazed by co-workers who resist learning anything new and only take a training if it is mandatory (and even then, manage to slip out of registering). Oh, well – their loss!

  22. I love how when Nalts doesn’t post for awhile the last posted topic becomes a conversation catch all for whatever people want to talk about.

  23. thanks @42 for killing my resent fantasy buzz vacation

    this is the shit that makes me so angry, bailing out corrupt and rotten CEOs and their investors while more and more Americans can’t even make ends meet.

    We have to go back in history and pick up a few tips. First order of business, Vets have to march and camp on the lawn of the Mall demanding better treatment for all Americans, it is their duty to protect and defend against all enemies foreign and domestic, even after service.

    Media Pundits need to be held captive by protesters in front of their buildings until their respective newspapers start reporting and headlining what’s really happening thus, putting greater pressures on local officials. Forget standing in front of state houses, they have drive through tunnels now and it’s getting cold and bad PR is a bigger bitch politically.

    The poor have rolled over for forever and don’t doubt that the middle class is getting preped to do the same. We really can’t wait for the transfer of power stuff has to start now.

    One thing we didn’t have in the past was You Tube. If there are just a few big partners willing to take up the cause, put a little imagination and effort into coordinating and highlighting what is happening and make some news, there’s no telling what could be done.

    There’s a lot of power and history making here just waiting to be tapped.

    Ego’s aside, who, of the really big guys is willing to get the ball rolling?

    Mr. Safety?
    who did I miss?

  24. Vets tried a peaceful sit-in protest over the tanking economy but Douglas MacArthur, may he burn in hell, sent goons to beat up the vets, chase them back to their residences and burned their homes to the ground.

    As for ANY of the big guys getting the ball rolling:

    is that crickets I hear?

  25. I think instead of giving billions to the businesses whose unethical practices got our country to this point to begin with, maybe the Government should focus on the people.who make up this country.

    Let’s do some math, just for fun. At the last census, we had just about 115,000,000 adults in this country (18 & over). If we went by that number alone, and divided the $700B bailout by each one, we would each get about $6000. That could pay my rent for over six months, or pay off almost all of our debts.

    But let’s not stop there. About 50% of adult Americans make $50,000 a year or more. If you, as a person, are making that much and not making ends meet, it’s time to hit a budgeting course. So let’s cut those folks out of the mix. This leaves about $12,000 for all of us poor broke folks. $12,000 is a lot, but I’m married, which means that my family would get $24,000.

    Imagine what a family could do with that sort of cash. $24,000 could buy the materials needed to build a home, and in some areas, could buy a home completely.

    But here’s what I think the US aught to do with that $700 bil. Give it all to Habitat for Humanity. Their organization gives interest free home loans to couples who show the ability to pay it back, and have a reputation for virtually never needing to forclose, because they charge a fair price, and they educate the home buyer in effective budgeting.

    If the government did as I’ve mentioned, homelessness would be virtually cured. The only homeless would be those unwilling to work. Renting would be a thing of the past, and Americans would build real, long term wealth.

    But then, what do I know? I don’t even have a job right now.

  26. @44 MacArthur is dead.
    I’d just like to see those goons try and haul off Powell and Clark.

    “is that crickets I hear?”
    Oh, ye of pessimism and little faith, it’s still dark, wait till the sun comes up. Write a few letters, attach that video.

    For the few who think this economic crunch isn’t going to effect them, here’s a small list of trickle downs coming your way…

    your job
    your 401k, retirement pensions, social security, vet benefits
    your schools, especially special ed.and any extra curriculars
    fewer cops, firefighters, paramedics, garbage collectors
    higher crime more rats
    higher prices at the store, smaller portions
    quality of everything in decline
    further deterioration of the infrastructure
    quality of medical care, more mistakes
    higher insurance rates, decline of insurance
    higher interest rates on credit cards, regardless of your lock in – read the fine print
    higher local taxes fewer services

    hmmm… what’s that I smell? Why could it be the faint swell of fearful sweat coming from the upper classes?

  27. @45 your figures are a little off, it’s actually $8k per person – I think they didn’t include kids over18 living at home and in school and a few other factors.

    Also, right now there is more vacant housing than Americans without homes, so no need to build, though a number of those homes need some fixing up, but that means jobs!

    As noted by many economist, had we let the stock market fall the free market would have cleaned itself up. We saw that happening just a few days before the bailout passed which is why after the bailout passed the market fell again; why buy when you know there’s free money and a new bottom? – btw, here’s a little irony, John McCain who pretty much called himself the grand wizard against earmarks, ended up approving everything in the bailout which totaled more than all the earmarks he was ever against – The stock market crashing would have caused a significant loss for some people, but gambling, which is what the stock market is, is known to do that to your purse, but it’s no where near the loss the majority of Americans are going to feel without some immediate relief. SCMJ is correct, if you want to stimulate the economy you got to give it to the people to spend. That’s what rainy days are for. I’ll tell you one thing, I’d pay a few bills, I certainly wouldn’t spend my entire portion on meth.

    The only difference between you Jim and corporations receiving these funds are campaign donations made by corporate lobbyist, however, revoking one law could change all this bullshit, remove corporate personhood and watch 90% of our economic problems wash away. From corporate welfare to the military industrial complex, all gone in a flash. And to those who think corporations are the backbone of this nation and we will fail without them, I ask you, where is your sense of entrepreneurship and love of the free market?

    Back in the Great Depression many people were ashamed to say they were broke or in financial hardship, Jackass and You Tube has changed all that. This situation is just waiting to be exploited. Doing it just right is viral video pay dirt. Who on the You Tube A List will commit sincerely and start the ball rolling?

  28. @46
    I know he’s dead. So I correct my grammar: May he be burning in hell.

    Powell and Clark? PFFFFT! Are you joking? They’re Washington insider power brokers who eat $200 lunches and are jetted around the country like royalty. They’d burn vets homes to the ground in a New York minute for an “attaboy”!

  29. Uh, didn’t Powell JUST stab his “beloved” commander-in-chief in the back for a shot at a government job? That was him, right? Yeah. It was. What makes you think he won’t drop a dime on G.I. Joes??????

  30. @51 – Powell needs a lot of redemption and Clark is involved with VoteVets, what they needs is a little prodding. Write them a letter, ask them to help organize a new Bonus Army, tell them you’ll film it and upload it to You Tube. Doin’ nothin’ get’s ya nothin’. Gotta be a badger, sink your teeth in and not let go, you sound like you got a set of strong jaws. Bush is out, Obama is in, he’s green and a community organizer, gotta get um before full transformation to the dark side takes hold. And really marquis, stop being such a buzz kill, it’s exhausting, being a cynic is the easy way out, fight the good fight, find solutions, don’t wallow in the misery and what can’t be done remember, nothing great was ever done without enthusiasm!

    Alright now, you sons-of-bitches, you know how I feel. That is all.

  31. Perhaps my videos have been too subtle, my blogs too interspersed with pop culture inanity, my stories of the street too earthy, my poetry too priggish, but I continue to strive to seep into the collective consciousness.

    I continue.

    I seep.

  32. yeah, I noticed subtle doesn’t work for high numbers on You Tube. Of course if you’re only looking to appeal exclusively to the abstract suffering artist audience who have a need to suffer subtly abstract as a way of life… What’s needed to boost numbers on You Tube is a pie in the face kick um the groin sexy girl kitty cat video. Only intellectuals appreciate seeping subtleties and personally you’re stuff is really depressing me these days and like the trees that only put out the colors they hold in abundance I’m way over extended in that area. Ya know even Magritte dabbled in flamboyant colors during the great depression hoping it would lift the spirits of the people up. Of course his agent didn’t think that was such a good idea. But if subtly seeping makes you feel better then what the heck, seep away seep…

  33. You’re suffering. I’m celebrating the Kafkaesque dark truths of my soul, a black comedy of futzing through the consequences of my life decisions …. more Jackson Pollock than Magritte, a blood splatter of meaning rather than Magritte’s unknowable mystery.

    But I made you a puppy love video just the same

  34. The puppy love video got me over the top?

    Ah, the rising tide of cute. Me and some Hell’s Angels had an interesting conversation about that back in the early 80s:



    For 10 floating hours
    on this slow-moving south Texas river
    we talked about our parallel struggles
    against fascism, blind obedience,
    and the rising tide of CUTE.

    (It was all bullshit–
    just our floating, tattooed way
    of justifying ourselves
    as we floated aimlessly
    down the Guadalupe River
    on acid.)

    We were
    a Kabuki theater of the absurd on inner tubes,
    floating past lakehouses
    that jutted out on stilts over the river
    like the arrogant breasts
    of frustrated housewives…

    We were
    floating like slow-motion whirling dervishes
    past abandoned piers
    which stood marooned to the knees
    in tangled knots of garbage
    like the waterlogged skeletons
    of murdered ideas…

    We were
    floating past the uncivilized tangle
    of denuded sumac and cypress and beer can trees
    like anhedonic hugger-mugger whores
    milking the anaconda.

    We watched
    the pulsing horizon
    like Aladdin watching the smoke
    from the magic lamp;
    the smoke coalescing into
    the omnipotent djinn
    of our hallucinations.

    We talked
    of Dos Passos and Dos Equis
    and Kerouac and Maui Wowie
    and Ginzberg and synthetic # 4…
    and we lived more
    in those 10 floating hours
    than the most ancient
    of the goat herders
    have lived
    in the mountains
    of Abkhazia.

  35. ^ Has it mattered before?

    Oh yeah, we were talking about how quickly Obama has begun to break his campaign promises, like the one about no lobbyists being in his cabinet. Strike that one. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

  36. Okay, since Nalts refuses to update this blog, here are a couple of new posts:

    Announcing a new contest: “YouTube Contest Challenges Users To Make A ‘Good’ Video”

    Announcing some sort of live function that Nalts will be in: Youtube Live with Miss Busters!

    It really pisses me off that I have to do Nalts’ work for him.

    Man, Marquis, that was some kick-ass poetry @ 58! When you’re mediocre you are pretty self-indulgent, but when you’re good, you are superb.

  37. Seriously, it’s almost been a whole week since the guy posts a blog. I’ve gotten so desperate for something to do that I’ve resorted to posting on my own blog. That’s desperation, folks!

  38. @66
    Hahaha! Me, too, SCMJ. While deleting some old posts, I ran across this 2006 list of hot video sites. Wanna play a game? Guess how many of these hot sites went belly up in the last 24 months:

    Youtube, Google Video, iFilm, Metacafe, Dailymotion, Myspace, Angry Alien, Anime Episodes.Net, Badjojo, Blastro, Blennus,, Bofunk, Bolt,, Castpost, CollegeHumor, Current TV, Dachix, Danerd,, DevilDucky, Double Agent, eVideoShare, EVTV1, FindVideos, Free Video Blog, Grinvi, Grouper, Hiphopdeal, Kontraband, Lulu TV,,,, MySpace Video Code, Newgrounds, NothingToxic, PcPlanets, Pixparty, PlsThx, Putfile, Revver, Sharkle, SmitHappens, StreetFire, ThatVideoSite, TotallyCrap, VideoCodes4U, Video Codes World, VideoCodeZone, vidiLife, Vimeo, vSocial, Yikers, ZippyVideos

  39. @71

    I knew he was missing, and I kind of guessed he was pasteurized, but I had no clue he was homogenized. I could have sworn he was into the ladies.

    And another rumor is born.

  40. ^
    Important stuff too. Like doing things. And the other things.

    Let’s face it, Nalts doesn’t love us anymore. Let’s spend the next 22 replies lamenting over his betrayal of our trusting souls.

Comments are closed.