Unicast, the online advertising solutions provider, has announced in press release the birth of a new online ad format that enables advertisers to deliver their message with full-screen, broadcast quality video. Unicast's Video Commercial is built on the Microsoft� Windows Media� 9 Series platform and is delivered to consumers via Unicast's patented pre-cached technology. AT&T;, Honda, McDonald's, Pepsi, Vonage, and Warner Brothers are currently participating in a six-week, pre-paid beta launch of the Video Commercial.
The idea of video advertising is interesting, but I don't understand if people need to install Unicast's software on their machines. If this is true, I won't expect a lot of users to agree, at least at time being. There's too much spam and spyware around. First you need to build trust and educate people about this kind of advertising. I mean, users can't skip ads, the Internet can't exist without advertising, so it's just better to build a relationship with users, telling them about existing formats and asking them the one they prefer. See the example of WeatherBug I talked about a couple of days ago.
On the topic, you can also read the eCommerceTimes, where Jay Lyman interviews Michael Kelleher an analyst at Yankee Group. He says that the video ads are the next generation of online advertising, particularly with the growth of broadband Internet connections. However, the analyst added, the ads might not win the favor of users if they interfere with their online routines.