Thursday, 15 November 2007

Video Adverts, Travel and Blinkx

Further to my look into video advertising and distribution opportunities for travel, Blinkx have recently launched a video advertising platform called AdHoc. Blinkx is listed on AIM.

Blinkx's self explanatory description in their own words:

"Make money every time you share a video on your blog, website or social networking profile. Sound good to you? It's easy to do! Our clever technology matches relevant, in-video text ads to any video. Whenever someone clicks on an ad in your video, you make half the cash! "

To make get these revenue generating videos, you very simply sign up to Blinkx AdHoc, give them you PayPal email address, search for a video you want and then paste the code into your website / blog. It takes literally minutes.

I have found a couple of different examples in travel, the first being an video clip by MyTravel with advertising from Thomas Cook. The second being travel technology by Revelex promoting their cruise product (couldn't find any matching ads!).

If you start a video you should see the advertising at the top of the video. It is a bit small and although it isn't as obtrusive as TV adverts which take up the whole screen and pack them in back to back, it took me a while to notice that they are there. I think the advertising bit needs a little work. The concept is there and this will go through some evolutions to get optimised.

What are the opportunities?

The Travel Company - It is a a clever way of promoting travel and I predict that we are going to see a real explosion of travel companies using the online video medium to promote their products. Video is a natural medium for a customer to get an insight into the product that they are buying and generally is self explanatory every time. I can see both generic and the travel companies own destination and hotel videos being advertised on by travel companies of brands and offers that relate to the destination or hotel that they are looking at. The Blinkx technology apparently is contextual enough to enable this just like keywords in Google. According to Blinkx, it has a better contextual match than Google.

The Technology Company - I am not so sure about the travel technology promotion and whether it inspires confidence or just comes across amateurish - who knows maybe this is the turning point where we do away with the salesperson and leave it to the IT team to market and sell the products!