Ads That Can’t Be Skipped? YouTube Launches Bumper Ads

With more people using their mobile devices to view content, Google has been working on new advertising solutions to help advertisers reach more people through their ads. Their latest effort was unveiled recently in the form of Bumper ads, which are six-second videos that can’t be skipped.


You heard right; you won’t be able to skip them, but they are so short, it probably won’t matter. The short video format is in keeping with the viewing preferences, habits and behaviors of users, with various studies indicating that shorter videos receive more views and engagement. Sold through the AdWords platform, Bumper ads will feature prominently on YouTube videos, especially for smartphone users, with the aim being to drive incremental reach and higher frequency. Advertisers can start utilizing Bumper ads in their advertising campaigns as of May 1st by purchasing them through AdWords auction on a cost per thousand (CPM) basis.

Why Bumper Ads?

Designed to be quick and fun, Bumper ads are geared towards 18 – 49 year olds, half of whom are more likely to watch videos on their mobile devices, according to research. They are also considered more ideal for both advertisers and viewers. YouTube users who encounter ads from time to time often complain about annoying ads, some of which may last longer than a minute.

Although they can’t be skipped, the fact that they last only six seconds means people will be more likely to view them before losing interest. The shortened ad size is also considered perfect for serial advertising. This means, marketers can cut up longer videos to create a series, which may lead to increased interest in the message that is being promoted through the ads.

According to an AdWords blog post released by Google, Bumper ads are the little haikus of standard video ads. They aim to keep up with the short attention spans of viewers while creating interest in brand offerings and potentially driving traffic. YouTube currently sees over 4 billion video views per day, with mobile views contributing to an average of 1 billion across all markets.

What This Means for Advertisers

Bumper ads represent a unique opportunity for advertisers to do more with their advertising dollar, in addition to being more creative with ads. The move follows similar measures by other social media platforms in recent times. A few weeks earlier, Facebook announced an optimized mobile advertising platform that allowed marketers to create short-form videos that do better than TV ads.

Initial response has been vastly positive, with early numbers showing that Bumper ads work even better when combined with TrueView or Google Preferred campaigns. Additionally, Bumper ads make it possible for advertisers to diversify their advertising budgets when developing ad campaigns, since six-second videos will probably cost less than longer productions.

A few YouTube Advertising Statistics to consider:

  • Net ad revenue for YouTube globally is $4.28 billion.
  • Market statistics show that YouTube viewers are 10 times more likely to visit or subscribe to a brand channel after being exposed to a TrueView ad.
  • The same statistics suggest that viewers were 23 times more likely to visit or subscribe after completing a TrueView ad.
  • YouTube on mobile reaches more viewers in the 18 – 49 year old category than any cable network in the U.S.
  • The top 100 global brands have run TrueView ads in the past year.

YouTube advertising has been growing in leaps and bounds over the past few years. The new Bumper ad format seems likely to make advertising to your target market even more fruitful.