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IAB Tech Lab ad format updates include digital video and CTV

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IAB Tech Lab ad format updates include digital video and CTV


Today, IAB Tech Lab announced updates to its ad format guidelines that include digital video and connected TV (CTV). The aim is to minimize fragmentation in the ad ecosystem due to a proliferation of new formats and ad capabilities, including the interactivity promoted by digital ads.

According to IAB, the new guidelines will be available for public comment for the next 30 days, giving an opportunity for publishers and ad platforms to weigh in.


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Why we care. There is potentially a lot of extra work for ad creators who want to use existing assets for campaigns in emerging channels online and in the admittedly fragmented CTV space.

A similar need is being met on Facebook, where just last week 3D imaging platform VNTANA launched an integration that converts and standardizes 3D images for specific 3D ad campaigns.

The point is, the extra work in reformatting assets can be a significant hurdle for advertisers with limited budgets. Addressability is another hurdle which IAB Tech Lab tackled last month.

Nuts and bolts. Also an important new guidelines: They are set with cross-screen campaigns in mind. It’s not just about tailoring the standards to, for instance, a smart TV format. Instead, it’s about enabling these ads to fit to any screen.

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Some specific guidelines for digital video and CTV include:

  • general submission guidelines for creative file submissions, such as ad duration, aspect ratio, and details of any engagement events;
  • guidelines for the raw source file such as bitrate, frame rate, color space, and audio settings to drive the most consistent output for transcoding smaller, ready-to-serve files;
  • guidelines for transcoding smaller, ready-to-serve files at low, medium, and high resolutions to match to environments where screen size or connection speeds may be limited; and
  • nonlinear and companion ad guidelines for dimensions and placement, duration, engagement, and controls.

Nonlinear and companion ads. As mentioned above, nonlinear ads are small video or animated overlays that, according to IAB, are becoming more common in CTV. 

Similar guidelines are provided for companion ads that display outside the player, such as when the player is embedded in a webpage. 

Read next: How to use QR codes in CTV and cross-channel campaigns


About The Author

Chris Wood draws on over 15 years of reporting experience as a B2B editor and journalist. At DMN, he served as associate editor, offering original analysis on the evolving marketing tech landscape. He has interviewed leaders in tech and policy, from Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, to former Cisco CEO John Chambers, and Vivek Kundra, appointed by Barack Obama as the country’s first federal CIO. He is especially interested in how new technologies, including voice and blockchain, are disrupting the marketing world as we know it. In 2019, he moderated a panel on “innovation theater” at Fintech Inn, in Vilnius. In addition to his marketing-focused reporting in industry trades like Robotics Trends, Modern Brewery Age and AdNation News, Wood has also written for KIRKUS, and contributes fiction, criticism and poetry to several leading book blogs. He studied English at Fairfield University, and was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He lives in New York.



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The Simplicity of a Press Badge with Jeff J Hunter [VIDEO]

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The Simplicity of a Press Badge with Jeff J Hunter [VIDEO]

Jeff Hunter

Jeff is the Chief Growth Officer of Branded Media where he creates solid, recognizable, legacy driven personal brands for legitimate companies and influencers.
Over the last half decade, and 1000+ paying clients later, Jeff has tested and perfected proven branding strategies, processes, and systems.
Jeff is also the Founder and “King of Outsourcing” at VA Staffer. VA Staffer is an inbound marketing agency powered by virtual assistants that helps business owners get things done.

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