WWF Hits Visitors With Video Stream Ads

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Having a site that ranks among the highest on the Web in serving the most video stream features to visitors monthly, WWF.com looks to make video stream the main vehicle for advertisers on its site as well. Based on what the World Wrestling Federation and its site's advertisers have seen in the past month, it has a good shot.


"It definitely has the opportunity to be the main advertising vehicle on the site," said Lee Barstow, vice president of marketing and sales at the WWF, Stamford, CT.


The WWF has 50 to 75 active advertisers on its site. About 10 of those are using the video stream method of advertising.


"The majority of the advertisers on our site use the banner ad method," Barstow said. "But those that have been using the video stream are starting to see good results and are realizing that it is becoming the most effective way to break through the clutter of advertising."


Those results, specifically from last month, show 2 million ad impressions and 3 percent to 8 percent on click-throughs.


Back in December the WWF started experimenting with what it calls prestream advertising. The WWF has a collection of more than 7,000 video clips on its site. Those clips range from news of the day or highlights of a new home video to video of a visitor's favorite wrestler or a highlight from one of the WWF's weekly TV shows.


Since it began running the video stream ads the WWF said it has seen a click-through rate of 3 to 5 percent on the video ads. As for its banner ads, it has seen a click-through rate of about 2 percent "on the low end" and up to 12 percent "on the high end."


When a user clicks on one of the video clips, a five- to 15-second commercial runs prior to the selected clip. The user can click on the ad and a new window pops up, linking him to the advertiser's site. The initial clip the user wanted to view does not run until he returns to the site.


The advertisers create a clip specifically for the WWF site or let the WWF use a clip from one of their TV commercials.


Advertisers using the prestream video advertising feature include Destination Films, Rolling Stone magazine, PhoneFree.com, Nintendo and Nike.
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