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Lighten Up, Dear Video Advertiser

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Given how advertisers behave on TV, maybe it's time for them to lighten up. There are risks and just rewards when advertising online, in the user-controlled world. Check out how one video newcomer addresses their concerns.

The online environment is certainly no worse than TV shows, says Veoh Networks CEO Dmitry Shapiro in a recent Ad Age interview (subscription required). Veoh is a new destination for user videos, which seeks branded advertisers who might typically hesitate to make buys.

Ad Age Digital: You're launching with Dr Pepper as an advertiser. Yet advertisers are nervous about being next to questionable user-generated content. Have you solved that problem?

Mr. Shapiro: The "being next to stuff" [excuse] I always find silly. On the web you're next to everything. I understand what people mean by being next to, but I guess I just don't believe it. Look at "Fear Factor." Their advertisers know they're going to be next to pretty nasty stuff, but they're still buying ads in it.

Of course, most video content isn't salacious or offensive. There's a plethora of stupid human and pet tricks, and much more. At this stage, the next-to-video advertisers mainly struggle with making targeted buys in an uncontrolled environment.

Our judgment? Savvy advertisers should lighten up for another reason. They still know who they're generally reaching, where they're placing ads, and how many users or visitors they've reached. All very traditional values delivered in the user-controlled world.


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