Everyday more and more brands create 360-degree virtual reality video content and upload it to YouTube and Facebook. And with YouTube’s latest announcement to support virtual reality content, we can expect even more VR creators to fully embrace the platform.
Even with all this amazing virtual reality content available to viewers, it is still limited for the most part to YouTube and Facebook video players and VR specific platforms like Vrideo and Littlstar. VR content can be viewed on platform or embedded as a video in a blog post. But sometimes brands just want the ability to also take that VR content and utilize it for advertising across the web. That is what one Silicon Valley startup, AdsOptimal, is hoping to solve.
Founded by Thai developer and entrepreneur Brad Phaisan, AdsOptimal is looking to evolve their business of mobile display advertising to include a solution for delivering virtual reality content banner ads across platforms.
So what does that mean? Say you are a brand that just created an amazing virtual reality experience and want to get even more users to experience it outside of just YouTube. With the AdsOptimal VR display units, advertisers can create an interactive banner ad that will play 360-degree videos and can also have the option to expand the experience to view with a VR headset.
Instead of brands having to build out their own Android or iOS app to show off their latest virtual reality experience, AdsOptimal is hoping their solution will save advertisers development costs and jazz up the often static display ads in the process. With seed funding from the likes of Andreessen Horowitz, Y Combinator, SV Angel and others, AdsOptimal is hoping virtual reality display advertising is what brands will be looking to next.
It does seem the company may be on to something though, according to an AdsOptimal initial test of the VR display ad units, click-through-rates showed a 10X improvement over traditional display ads.
Whether or not virtual reality display advertising will catch on with advertisers is a big question mark. And if it does catch on, there is nothing keeping larger companies like Google from providing alternative advertising solutions.
The real question though is not whether this ad format will catch on. In a future where consumers are spending hours immersed in a VR headset, the idea of a display ad will take on a completely different meaning in a virtual reality world where anything is possible.