Just Dance 2's live streaming video banner ad on YouTube.
If you happened to stop by YouTube today, you saw a little of
what they're talking about. In this case, live video in a banner ad
as part of a promotion for Ubisoft's "Just Dance 2," a dance-off in
Times Square, hosted by Audrina Patridge ("The Hills") and Jai
Rodriquez ("Queer Eye").
YouTube is Google's biggest -- and really only -- big display
property and hence a test bed for the things it'd like to do in
display advertising. The Ubisoft takeover is a cute parlor trick,
but one has to wonder who will appreciate the fact that the video
was actually live and not a recording.
Live video is certainly cool and a neat technical feat. The
world has been waiting for YouTube to flick on live streaming for
users, instead of using it for isolated events; last month, YouTube
did a live
streaming trial with Next New Networks, Howcast, Rocketboom and
But aside from showing that it has the technical might and
resources to do it, the question is, well, why? Live video is
essential for sports and video conferencing, but not very useful
for most video. The beauty of YouTube is you can watch the clips
you want when you want, which is almost never live. And if
recorded video is tough to screen and monetize, live video is that
Incidentally, it isn't YouTube doing the live streaming into the
ad unit today; Ubisoft contracted with an outside provider.
Still, give Google credit for using technology to spur some new
thinking about banners. YouTube isn't the first to put live video
in an ad; Google did it last month by streaming a MIXX Conference presentation
from display chief Neal Mohan and managing director for media Barry
Salzman into a banner ad on AdAge.com and elsewhere. It was
super-handy for those of us tied down to our desks that day.