Ads on YouTube are about to get more practical

Photo of Ads on YouTube are about to get more practical
Silhouettes of mobile users are seen next to a screen projection of Youtube logo in this picture illustration taken March 28, 2018.

Taking a page from Google’s playbook, YouTube will start giving people more ways to act on the ads it shows them.

The company introduced new features for video ads on YouTube during Advertising Week in New York on Monday that borrow from search ads on Google, its parent company. The new ad units will offer people ways to take actions around what they’re watching and searching for, similar to the way a search for “flights to New York” on Google surfaces sponsored flight information.

For example, watch a movie review on YouTube, and you might be shown a trailer for the film with a row of showtimes at your local theater below the video. Stream mobile gaming tips and you could be shown a sponsored link to download the game app. Search for travel advice on backpacking through Belize, you could be given sponsored information on booking a flight. These are all potential applications of the new ad “extensions” YouTube is exploring for advertisers

One example of extensions for video ads on YouTube.

The video platform, which is also one of the largest search engines in the world, introduced the ability to show ads based on searches last year. The new “extensions for video ads” build on that. The company also announced new measurement tools to help advertisers understand how their ads are performing.

Google is the world’s largest advertising platform, generating $95 billion in advertising revenue (pdf) in 2017. (Parent company Alphabet does not break out how much YouTube alone makes in its public filings.) The new advertising options could help the juggernaut maintain its dominance over Facebook, and newer .

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#edited by elijah wolfson