Web Publishers Plan More Ad-Supported Video

SAN FRANCISCO CNET Networks plans to migrate more of its content to video, while ESPN.com is looking to further personalize its video application, executives from the online publishers revealed during a session today at Ad:Tech.

The mid-morning session at the Palace Hotel here addressed how marketers and Web publishers can leverage interactive broadcast and broadband.

By upping its video usage, CNET hopes to create “in-stream advertising opportunities, which we believe will lead to greater acceptance than interstitial,” said vice president of business development Chas Edwards. “There is enormous pressure on the creative side of the world to make that commercial creative work harder than before.”

In June, CNET plans to roll out footage of its editors giving product reviews that will be proceeded by 15-second spots, Edwards said.

Meanwhile, ESPN.com aims to introduce user- and system-initiated personalization features for its video application within the next eight weeks, said ESPN Motion director and general manager Ed Davis. The online property will let users create play lists of the content they want to view. It will also send consumers video clips based on past behavior; for instance, if a user frequents the golf section of the site, they might receive video from the latest tournament.

The Disney-owned sports property is also considering incorporating video into its search results, said Davis.

For the most part, advertisers continue to re-purpose their TV ads for the Web, said Mika Salmi, CEO of AtomShockwave Corp., an online entertainment company that runs ads from marketers like Nintendo, Microsoft and AT&T before films and games.