Reading through the just publisged (April 3rd) IAB Digital Video Ad Format Guidelines and Best Practices, I had to write down a few comments:
General comments :
1) this document only applies to the web, and does not take into account the emergence of convergent devices (IPTV, mobile, podcasts) in addition to the Web. In particular we should probably treat linear and non-linear video ads in the same way on those devices. This document lacks a proper approach to other devices.
2) no recommendation on how to measure ad performance and stats ? This is a key feature for accurate ad-serving & selling campaigns
Page 3 : good focus on the 3 types of ads I've been discussing for at least a year. Now they have names :
- In-stream video Linear video ads
- in-stream video non-linear video ads
- in-stream video companion ads
Page 6: some of the specifications do not make total sense:
- Video file technical specifications:
. 2 Mbps bitrate is way too much with current videos. Try 400Kbps for video and 96 Kbps for audio for example as a minimum. We need to keep in mind the download link.
. A key frame every second is not a proper way of doing this. Some content require a lot of keyframes, some other do not (newscast with a speaker for example). I would rephrase to be a recommendation only.
. MPEG2 is a lousy codec that takes too much space for the Internet. It should be removed from the list. WMV, H.264 are great. What about divx or xvid ;) ?
. ratio : 4:3 and 16:9 then totally ignore that some mobile phones, used in UGC to dot respect this ratio. playing a video + ad will then require to have a video play in 4:3 or 16:9 ratio ?
. no maximum file size for the ad ?
Page 7: frequency capping
. it should not only be a frequency capping for the campaign, but also for the creative file. Seeing the same ad over and over creates a problem with video. I would recommend creating several creative files for one campaign
. no recommendation on when an ad should be displayed
. no recommendation on how often a non)linear ad should be displayed within a video file or a playlist ?
. this recommendation only takes into account banner overlays. what about LOGOS, Picture-in-Picture, rolling text ?
Finally, I see no recommendation on bundled ads (different than companion ads)
. an intro bumper + post-roll
. an overlay + post roll or ending bumper ?
Version 2 of this documents is definitively in beta phase still.