Digital Video Ads in 2013 Are Longer and More Frequent Than They’ve Ever Been


Video technology company FreeWheel recently released an annual video monetization report that looked at Q4 viewership as well as 2012’s total view numbers, which were aggregated from companies like Vevo, FOX and ESPN.

From the information, FreeWheel discovered several interesting things in regards to video monetization and how viewers consumed ads in 2012. The first interesting finding states that digital video ads are mirroring television ads in terms of length.

In 2011, 15-second video ads were the leading format for digital advertising. The report shows that one year later, in 2012, video ads had increased to a new standard of 30-seconds. So good news, web-based video ads are getting longer — wait, that isn’t good news at all.

In addition to longer ad duration, video advertisements also increased in terms of frequency. Web videos 20 minutes or longer currently have an average of 9.4 ads. This ad frequency closely mirrors that of 30-minute television programming, which can have anywhere between 16 and 20 ads per viewing.



The 2012 numbers also suggest that although ads are becoming longer and more frequent, viewers are sticking around to finish them. 93 percent of ads were watched to completion in long form content (20 minutes and up), while ads attached to short form content (5 minutes) were finished 68 percent of the time.

Not a huge shocker to anyone, but digital video is rapidly catching up to television in terms of not only production value and star power, but also ad frequency. Of course, these finding are a huge blow for naysayers who see digital video as a passing trend. However, digital video gaining credibility among its media platform peers means that us, the viewer, will start seeing more of those advertisements we all love so much. It’s the ol’ double-edged sword.

for more on digital video and its ever-encroaching on television’s shores, check out “YouTube Rumored to be Investing $50 Million in Vevo“ and “How Much is a View Worth?