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Vertical video ad unit looks familiar to millennials

The Daily Dot is among the publishers planning to test a new programmatic vertical mobile video ad unit, reflecting the need to deliver experiences tailored to mobile users as traffic from smartphones continues to grow. 

The Internet daily newspaper reports that more than 60 percent of its Web site traffic comes from mobile and, in the past year, video has been a significant source of incremental growth, with demand surpassing supply. In search of new revenue sources, the publisher is eyeing vertical video for its potential to become a bigger part of its video monetization strategy. 
"Over the past six months, we've been following the quiet movement towards vertical video, which until now, has been confined to mobile app experiences like Snapchat,? said Alex Debelov, CEO of Virool. ?Now, we're on the brink of a new wave in mobile video advertising, as advertisers and publishers jump on the vertical bandwagon and start distributing their videos across the worldwide-mobile-Web.?

On end
The Daily Dot is planning to begin testing Vertical Reveal, a new vertical video unit for advertisers and publishers from Virool, a video distribution platform, and Rubicon Project, an open advertising marketplace. 

The unit is delivered outstream, meaning it is not tied to content and can be dynamically embedded by Virool into related editorial content on the mobile Web. The portrait video content appears between paragraph breaks as a user is scrolling down the page. 

However, instead of pushing down the text on a page as some other outstream units do, Vertical Reveal reveals video content from behind the article text. 

The unit provides one-click social icons and customizable end cards. 

Rubicon Project is Virool?s initial launch partner, offering programmatic buying and selling and direct order automation of the new ad unit. With a number of big brands embracing programmatic buying for their digital advertising, vertical video ads could quickly be more visible. 

?We live in a vertical world where millennials? first language is mobile video,? said John Peragine, head of video at Rubicon Project. ?Vertical video is an essential tool for advertisers to build brand loyalty and increase purchase intent by connecting with audiences in their preferred format."  

A new view
The need for vertical video ads reflects how mobile users typically watch video, with their phones held in the vertical position. 

Traditionally, video content was developed with a horizontal orientation to meet the needs of TV viewers. When viewed on a smartphone held vertically, the video appears shrunk down with large dark bands above and below. 

As video viewing on mobile continues to grow, so is the demand for vertical video that fills the full screen of a device to provide a more immersive experience. 

One of the best examples of this is the recent success of Snapchat, which offers vertical video.

Virool points to results from Snapchat showing that vertical video delivers completion rates that are up to nine times higher as an example of the new unit?s potential for marketers. 

?The unit shows up from behind content in between paragraphs on an article page,? Mr. Peragine said. ?Once the video starts to be in view it will begin to play and as a viewer is scrolling through vertical content on their mobile device, a page break occurs allowing the vertical reveal to fully come into view.  

?Once the video is 100 percent in view, the video begins to auto-play with sound-off, across the entire screen,? he said. ?At 80 percent in view the video will snap to the top of the screen and if the viewer scrolls away, the video blurs and pauses once less than 50 percent is in view. 

?The viewer can scroll away from the completed video to continue reading the content on screen. The player will remain in the background, always available for the viewer to replay or engage with for the first time.?