First, we got the news that Joost — the Internet TV venture started by the Skype boys, Janus Friis and Niklas Zennstrom — has signed three-month advertising deals with 31 major brand advertisers, including Procter & Gamble, Coca-Cola, Nike and GM. Joost EVP David Clark said that the traditional 30-second spot “is far from dead” — although I think that remains to be proven. The New York Times has some more details.
Meanwhile, YouTube is also working on rolling out ads, according to its head of advertising Suzie Reider, who spoke at Ad:Tech in San Francisco, according to Red Herring. BusinessWeek media columnist Jon Fine — who moderated the panel that Ms. Reider was on — has some more details on his blog. Red Herring quotes Ms. Reider as saying “Weâ€™re looking at executions like a very quick little intro preceding a video, then the video, then a commercial execution on the backside of the content.â€ She said the idea is to generate revenue that can be shared with the more than 1,000 premium content creators on the site.
To my mind, the main questions are: 1) How will viewers of YouTube clips take to ads? Many observers have speculated that once ads start appearing, viewers will turn away, but I’m not so sure. And 2) What kinds of advertisers will YouTube be able to attract? Critics such as Mark Cuban have argued that most advertisers won’t want to be associated with the kind of content that’s on the site, whereas Joost is much more like regular TV.