IAB Completes Industry Guidelines For Video Ads

The Interactive Advertising Bureau has completed its first update of broadband ad rules in three years. . The trade group’s Digital Video Ad Format Guidelines And Best Practices (PDF) offers a range of definitions for the various formats related to linear video ads, non-linear video ads and companion ads. For instance, overlays should run 5-15 seconds with no audio until a user opts in.

Noting that the space has changed greatly since the guidelines were last issued in 2005, IAB CEO Randall Rothenberg said broadband video moved well beyond the experimental phase and that new specifications were needed to help improve ads tied to online video. However, the scope of the new document is fairly limited. The guidelines do not suggest the best way to measure impressions or other metrics for online video ads. It also avoids advertising during live video streaming or the use of full-screen video, since those formats tend to be more customized, making it difficult to apply strict uniform standards. Release

More about the new specs after the jump.

Linear video guidelines: Ads can be inserted pre-roll, mid-roll or post-roll, but cannot exceed 30 seconds. Since ads are displayed when a user opts-in to view content, IAB suggests that all linear video ads be “host-initiated.” Minimum video player controls should include controls for Fast Forward/Rewind, Pause, Zoom, with a controls enabled throughout the video ad play – with the exception of Fast Forward. Linear videos should be played at bit rates greater than 2Mbps.

Overlays: These ads, which play along with the video, often at the bottom of the screen, should be between 5-15 seconds. No audio is allowed until the viewer opts in. IAB also recommends that publishers clearly label the overlay unit as an ad.