YouTube introduces unskippable 30-second ads for CTV

YouTube has unveiled a range of innovations at its Upfront event in New York to make the service more appealing to TV ad buyers, including the introduction of 30-second unskippable ads to the YouTube Select offering on connected TV.

Instead of seeing two 15-second ads consecutively, users will see one 30-second unskippable ad.

YouTube Select was launched in 2020 to give advertisers confidence that their ads would be placed against brand-safe content. It offers a more curated selection of content creators and publishers across various categories.

According to YouTube, the Select offering is now responsible for over 70% of ad impressions to YouTube on the TV screen.

The Alphabet-owned streaming outfit said that viewers at home are more likely to be receptive to TV-like 30-second ads.

YouTube has also introduced a ‘pause’ feature for ads on connected TV devices, which enables adverts to be show when a video is paused.

YouTube also announced a range of original programming to accompany its acquisition fo NFL Sunday Ticket American football rights, including Game Day All Access, where users can listen in on the conversations of players wearing microphones sitting on the sidelines of a game. YouTube is also launching a series of shorts on the NFL’s YouTube channel called NFL Creator of the Week.

According to research released by MoffettNathanson a week ago, YouTube TV, the streamer’s virtual pay TV service,  was meanwhile the only US pay TV offering, virtual or otherwise, to add subscribers in Q1 of this year, growing by 300,000, or 1.4 million year-on-year, to reach 6.3 milllion. By comparison, the group reported that Hulu lost 100,000 live TV subscribers in Q1, while FuboTV lost about 160,000 North American subs.

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