Online publishers and independent video producers rejoyce: Google has just announced the launch of "Video Units", a new video-based advertising format that matches the breadth of consumable video content of YouTube with the huge Google AdWords advertising inventory.
The new Google Video Units are a new monetization option immediately available to AdSense publishers located in North America and with a web site in English. The Video Units configuration and activation can be accessed inside the AdSense Setup tab within your AdSense account.
As an online publisher you can customize the look and feel of the "video units" and select specific video content by letting Google match your page content, by keywords and categories you can select or even by specific YouTube authors.
The new "video units" ad player features the ability for the viewer to scroll and browse through several video clips as well as to move through different ads just like Google allows you to do inside your Gmail inbox.
The ads can be displayed both above and below the video and their format includes both text as well as full graphic banners.
"Nowadays, website publishers realize that getting people to visit your website is only half of the equation. Growing your audience is important, but keeping your audience engaged and staying on your site longer is just as important, if not more so.
Video units enable AdSense publishers to display videos from several YouTube content partners. The video units are ad-supported, and the ads are relevant to both the video and the site content.
AdSense publishers can now enhance their sites with interesting videos, YouTube content partners benefit from a new distribution channel, advertisers have a new vehicle to distribute their messages to their target audiences, and people can tune in to interesting videos on sites they normally visit."
Source: Google Official Blog
It must be indeed emphasized that both AdSense publishers and YouTube content partners will receive a share of the ad revenue, so "video units" are a very interesting monetization opportunity both for online web site publishers but also, if not more for independent video producers.
Google-YouTube "video units" are a nothing else but a new great way to enrich your site with video content that not only provides a more engaging and rewarding experience to your readers but that also provides a new monetization opportunity for any qualifying AdSense registered online publisher.
"AdSense isn't just for ads anymore; it's also a place to get video content for your site -- and earn extra revenue at the same time.
Simply embed a snippet of code and have relevant YouTube partner content streamed to your site.
You can choose categories of video to target to your site, select content from individual YouTube partners, or have video automatically targeted to your site content."
Google "video units" provide you with quality video content, that you can target, filter and focus on the topic and themes that are of interest to your readers inside an easy-to-use embeddable, customizable video player.
You, as "video units" publisher can choose the video content you want to publish in several different ways and impressions and revenue statistics from your "video units" will be displayed separately from other statistics on your personal AdSense reports page. For video units, Google will specifically show clicks, impressions, clickthrough rate, eCPM, and earnings.
If you're not already an AdSense publisher you can easily sign up now and start displaying video units on your pages in a matter of minutes.
Unfortunately non-US publishers located outside of the US or having sites in languages other than English are at the moment excluded from this new monetization opportunity, though this will be made available to them at a later, yet unspecified time.
If you're ready to get started now, sign in to your AdSense account and head for the AdSense Setup tab. Click the video units link and you'll be on your way to setting up your first video unit.
Here's a quick video tutorial:
To place video units on your site, here the specific steps you need to take.
1. Sign in to your AdSense account.
2. Go to the AdSense Setup tab and select the "video units" link.
3. Review and check off the Terms and Conditions box.
4. Click the Visit AdSense "video units" button that will take you to YouTube.
5. Link your AdSense account with your preferred YouTube account.
6. Go back to the AdSense Setup tab, select "video units" among the products and click the Visit AdSense Video units button.
7. Select now the newly displayed option to create a new AdSense player. Give your player a name and description so that you can come back and edit it in the future.
8. Pick a color theme. (You can change the colors in the future within your account without needing to update your code.)
9. Pick a layout. (Beware: layouts can't be updated; if you will need to change a layout in the future, Google will force you to create a new video unit from scratch).
10. Choose the type of video content you want to display: by content categories, by individual content providers, or by automatically targeting your site content. The cool thing here is that you can also provide keyword hints to assist automatic video content targeting.
11. Click the Generate code button, then copy and paste the code into into the HTML code of your site.
According to Google, once you publish your site to the web, targeted videos should begin appearing right away.
Each video unit can display two types of ads:
a) Companion ads, which appear in the player above the video content, and
b) Text overlay ads, which are displayed in the bottom 20% of the video content display area as the video is being played.
But what do "video units" look like?
There are several different formats to choose from, but each one displays a video screen and player controls that your visitors can use to navigate through the video.
Here's an example:
For you, as an online publisher there are three different ways to choose video content to use in "video units":
a) Selecting individual content providers.
YouTube partners who have chosen to distribute their videos to publisher websites along with targeted ads
b) Selecting content categories.
Topics and themes of video content you'd like to show on your site
c) Automatic targeting.
The video content you display will be automatically targeted to the content of your site. You can assist the targeting by providing relevant keywords.
Please note that presently, Google allows web publishers to display just one video unit per page and just as with other AdSense products, you can block specific specific ads from appearing in your video units by adding them to your Competitive Ad Filter list.
When you place a video unit on your website, you'll earn revenue from two types of ad formats: companion ads, which sit above your video content within the player and can be either text or image-based, and text overlay ads, which appear in the bottom 20% of the video content area.
Ads on video units can be paid on either a cost-per-click or cost-per-thousand impression basis.
Meet the Google Video Units team
Originally written by Robin Good for Master New Media and entitled "Online Video Advertising And Monetization: Google Launches AdSense-YouTube Video Units"