SpotXchange is ringing in the new year with chapter 5 of their digital video survival guide. You might remember a couple weeks ago when they put out chapter 4 about what to offer as a buyer or seller of online video ads. Today, it’s all about the video ad units, standards and measurements of said units.

We all know that “impressions” is not a valid measurement for video ads, it’s a 2D measurement being wrongly applied to a 3D ad unit. What I mean by that is that display ads are 2D, they have a width and a height, but video ads are 3D because they also have a duration. Sure, some animated display ads also have duration, but the message is usually clear from the get go and they generally only last a handful of seconds, not always true with video ads.

That them makes CPM (cost-per-thousand) weak as a model for online video advertising sales, after all, when is it counted? This is why cost-per-view makes more sense, it takes into account that third dimension, time.

Thanks to IAB initiatives, we have a set of standards, the so-called Video Suite, or VSuite for short, which included ways to serve, size and measure video ads and includes VPAID, VAST and VMAP.

If you’ve already looked over our list of video ad units then you’ve got a good grip on a lot of what SpotX is talking about in this chapter and an idea of some of the pros and cons. However, you’ll still want to read through it as they take into account a lot of more recent developments including talks about defining reach, view, etc. They also have a good view from the inside out and the insight provided in the chapter even gave me some new material to think about.

They also bring up some interesting things that the industry has yet to pin down, like an image being displayed in a video player for 15 seconds and then being considered a ‘video advertisement.’ Personally, I think that’s in-stream display ad which is different because of logistics, file format, sound and motion.

You can catch Chapter 5 and all the great insights from SpotXchange over at their blog or by downloading their Survival Guide to the Digital Video Landscape.