Category Archives: Product & Technology

Inform Floating Video Player: Impact Since Launch

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Some companies are calling it “Sticky” or “Pinned” video. At Inform we call it the Inform Floating Video Player.

No matter what you call it, since unveiling our new video product a few months ago, we’ve seen a dramatic increase in both video views and ad revenue for participating partners, as well as, most importantly, a continued positive user experience, since viewers can scroll through content and watch video at at the same time.

Floating videos have also gone mainstream. The Wall Street Journal agrees that this new video product will play a vital role in boosting publisher video ad viewability and revenue in 2016.

There’s no doubt that the Inform Floating Video Player has had a dramatic impact. Specifically:

  • A 500% increase in video revenue on single embeds
  • A 65% increase in ad viewability

Want to see the Floating Video Player in action? Check out a live demo on the Inform Product Resource Center.

If you’d like to learn more, please visit our resource center for more details or contact your account manager at InformVideo@inform.com to get it live on your site today.

Get Informed with the Inform Product Suite

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What if we told you we had a one-stop shop of all Inform products? Now we do.

We’re excited to announce the launch of the Inform Product Suite. Our Resource Center showcases our world-class technology that improves publishing operations and ad revenue for your sites, and provides a one-stop-shop for you on everything to do with products from Inform.

Housed right on our website, no additional log-in is necessary for you to get all the information you need on our video products, including overviews, product benefits, editorial features, real-life results, and implementation guides.

You can even see how some of our products work through live demos right on the page (check out InView and the Floating Video Player in action), and for all of our products, you can download the information in handy PDF one-sheeters.

Interested? Find out more about all of our products:

If you have any questions, please visit the resource center for more details or contact your account manager.

Live Stream the State of the Union on Your Site!

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For President Obama’s final State of the Union address Tuesday night, our friends at FedNet and Livestream are offering Inform partners an embeddable State of the Union live stream player.

In 2015, there were millions of online views of the State of the Union with a 45% increase in time spent from the previous year (source: Whitehouse.gov). We expect that number to increase in 2016 with the influence of election-based discussions and media coverage.

In addition, Inform will be offering on-demand highlights and analysis of the speech in the Inform Control RoomPerfect Pixel, and through our Video Match WordPress plugin.

To get the Livestream embed code, just copy the below.

<iframe src="http://livestream.com/accounts/300260/events/4655746/player?width=560&amp;height=315&amp;autoPlay=true&amp;mute=false" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" scrolling="no"></iframe>

 

Questions? Reach out to your account manager at InformVideo@Inform.com.

Inform Dynamic Placement: Increasing Video Ad Opportunities

We at Inform believe in the power of technology and people working together to improve efficiency, increase revenue, and create a better overall experience for audiences. Our Dynamic Placement market-leading technology helps to do just that.

Inform Dynamic Placement_12-15Working in both desktop and mobile environments, Inform’s Dynamic Placement enables the active placement of engaging videos on publisher story pages without the constant manual efforts by editors, allowing a significant increase in video pre-roll ad opportunities on publishers’ sites.

At the same time, editors retain full editorial control, choosing where on the site to place the videos and having the ability to remove or change videos at any time.

So how does Dynamic Placement work?

  • First,  Inform’s Perfect Pixel would be implemented to connect publisher site templates and stories with Dynamic Placement technology.
  • Next, our semantic matching algorithm reads the text and automatically identifies from our vast library of high-quality, pre-monetized videos the most relevant and appropriate ones to place on the page.
  • All that’s left to for the publisher to do is to select the stories for which they’d like Dynamic Placement.

Interested in letting Dynamic Placement do some of your work for you? Reach out to your account manager at InformVideo@Inform.com.

Inform Wire Match: Finding the Perfect AP Video

When Associated Press editors publish stories, they often select the best AP photos and videos to accompany them. While many publishers automate the placement of photos in these stories, there hasn’t been a way to do the same with video — until now.

Inform Wire Match dynamically places AP videos recommended by Associated Press editors next to related stories, creating a rich multi-format experience for your online audience. It doesn’t matter how your site publishes AP text, whether you automatically create pages or copy and paste AP content into your templates — Inform Wire Match will match the right video and story.

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Here’s how it works:

  • Built on Inform’s Perfect Pixel platform, Inform Wire Match uses a unique page-crawling service (just like a search engine) to find AP text on your website.
  • Using a natural language processing algorithm, the tool compares blocks of text and identifies the correct AP story.
  • Embedded videos are automatically inserted into preselected spots on your website in an embedded Inform player.

Benefits include:

  • Automatic placement of video recommendations from AP editors.
  • Perfect Pixel activation of each AP suggested video.
  • Inform and AP renewed partnership through 2017.

Want to learn more about Inform Wire Match? Reach out to your Account Manager or email us at InformVideo@inform.com.

Inform InView: Unlocking New Premium Video Dollars

According to Forrester Research, 77% of agencies and 70% of advertisers say the “InView” format – also known as “outstream” advertising – will be an important part of their clients’ overall advertising portfolio going forward – and Inform is there with our newest video advertising product.

Inform InView is here to help publishers take advantage of the unprecedented demand for premium video dollars. InView inserts a responsive, lightweight video player seamlessly between paragraphs in a publisher story template, creating a premium viewable experience for advertisers, and opening new inventory and a new stream of revenue for publishers.

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Here are even more benefits of Inform InView:

User friendly. The InView player only loads when it comes into the user’s view. Sound is off upon ad start and can be activated by the user with a toggle on the player. Upon completion, the player closes completely.

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Mobile friendly. The InView player is designed to create new video impressions in both desktop and mobile environments.

Easy to deploy. No design work or page modification is required, and InView can be powered by Inform’s Perfect Pixel platform or using a publisher’s own ad server.

Immediate sellability. Publisher sales teams can sell into InView immediately, creating a new opportunity for local clients.

Interested in Inform InView? Email us at InformVideo@inform.com or connect with your Inform contact to get started today.

The Inform Floating Video Player: Delivering Premium Video the Right Way

As our Vice President of Business Development Stephen Bach discussed in a recent post, many major news organizations are migrating towards stories leading with auto-start videos. While auto-start has come under scrutiny for issues with viewability, a simple change to player behavior has addressed these issues and improved other marketer KPIs.

The Inform Floating Video Player is the outcome of such a change. Since the player’s launch, participating partners have seen a 500% growth in video revenue, month over month. In addition, partners who use the player have seen ad viewability increase to over 65%.

How does the player work? To remind you, the floating video embeds directly onto the article page, and as users scroll down, a 400X version of the player snaps to the side of the browser and “floats” within view for best user experience. Viewers have control of the player, and can move the floating unit or close it completely.

InformFloatingVideoPlayer_imageThe Inform Floating Video Player is part of a cutting-edge trend used by industry leaders such as Facebook, Twitter, CBS News, ABC News, CNN and now Inform.

Please reach out to your Account Manager or email us at InformVideo@inform.com to start the implementation process today.

 

The State of Digital: HTML5 versus Flash

Adobe Flash has historically been the go-to technology for video streaming and monetization products. However, their lack of support in recent years has steered the industry away.

What’s the situation?

Flash is considered a security risk since Adobe is slow to release security patches. Apple has responded with a long-time ban of Flash from its iPhones and, more recently, with OS X Mavericks. Safari shipped by default with a power saving mode that restricted how Flash could function.

Other browsers have begun to follow suit. This past July, Mozilla blocked all versions of Flash that were not completely patched. The browser only allowed Flash again when Adobe responded with the patched versions.

In September, Chrome implemented changes similar to Safari’s, pausing flash products unless they’re central to content and reducing the number of resource or battery draining widgets.

What’s next?

As a result, the industry is moving towards a more native playback experience. HTML5 and Javascript are native to the browser, which allows for increased security and better system resource management. Video and monetization products have easily adopted HTML5/Javascript compatibility with the support of mobile devices.

While much of the buying arm of the advertising ecosystem has been slow to adopt HTML5/Javascript ad creatives, Inform is at the forefront of leading the charge for HTML5 conversion with advertisers and buyers. We offer a full suite of HTML5 native video streaming and monetization products, which are seamless and will automatically convert to native HTML5.

Interested in learning more? Reach out to your Inform contact or send an email to info@inform.com.

Float On for More Views

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IAB standardized auto-start embedding is an important tool for growing video views and revenue, but it’s been highly debated in newsrooms about the “politeness” to users and the impact to the viewing experience.

However, with unprecedented demand for video from premium advertisers, and video frequently becoming a critical element to storytelling, we are witnessing a move to auto-start video across many major news organizations.

More recently, auto-start has come under scrutiny for the impact to viewability, a key metric for advertisers. Despite being front and center on many story pages — embedded at the top of the content well, for example — auto-start by itself has traditionally performed poorly on viewability reports. But that’s no longer the case. With a simple change to player behavior, publishers are now scoring better than ever on viewability and other marketer KPIs.

Two years ago, our partners at Journal Broadcast Group (now part of EW Scripps) created an innovative enhancement to the Inform player to make autostart more polite and solve the viewabilty issue.

First, they offered users a toggle. Want to turn off autostart? No problem. They presented a choice under the player and remembered the user’s preference.

And to solve for viewability, they created a “floating player.” As the viewer scrolls down the page, and the margins of the player move out of view, a smaller version of the player snaps to side of the browser and stays with the user as they continue to scroll.

In April, Inform was fortunate to welcome Michael Gay from Journal Broadcast to the team as a Vice President overseeing our local broadcast and content strategy. Earlier this year, Michael won an Edward R Murrow award for best large market television website (TMJ4.com – Journal’s marquee property). The presentation of video and the floating player was among the winning distinctions.

Journal’s floating player concept was quickly adapted by Inform and now we’re rolling it out platform-wide as an available feature for publishers.

As we look around the industry, we’re seeing many of our peers develop a similar tool. Go to story pages at CNN, ABC News, and CBS News, and you’ll watch the player float as you move it out of view.

Our early results show a 2x-3x improvement to viewability. Concerned about the impact to user experience? Our version of the floating player gives users a choice about autostart, and allows them to move the floating unit around their screen or close it altogether.

Embedding single videos inside highly trafficked story pages is the single most critical element to growing viewership. Auto-starting those videos with a floating player will take viewership and revenue to the next level.

Check out an example of the floating player here. Interested in trying it out? Contact your account manager or info@inform.com.