While Google (NSDQ: GOOG) continues work on reaching its $1 billion in display revenue goal, the latest blip in the search giant’s strategy involves getting more smaller marketers to use in-video ad overlays on YouTube. In a blog post, concedes that most small spenders don’t have access to the tools needed to create an animated display unit that appears across the bottom of a video stream. So Google has tweaked one of its AdWords tools, the Display Ad Builder, which offers font and template options for advertisers to now provide a space to add some animation for overlays.
YouTube has steadily tried to find the right mix of ad models since Google bought it for $1.65 billion over three years ago. At various times, YouTube experimented with a mix of overlays and pre-rolls, even betting on post-rolls, which were seen as less annoying to viewers, at one point. Through it all, overlays have remained popular. But in general, the video site has found that there is no silver bullet that would lead to profitability, so it has opted for for a variety of tools.
Meanwhile, Google has also been trying to find ways of making its $3.1 billion purchase of DoubleClick work as well. In a series of initiatives starting last fall, Google began ramping up its focus on the display ad sales platform by integrating it more closely with AdSense and AdWords. YouTube is already pretty central to Google’s display goals and the company expects a lot more tweaking of the strategy over the next few months, whether or not display spending strengthens.