Google seems to be going back and forth over the video advertising business and monetization lately. First they mention Google TV Ads Online, then they pull AdSense video units, despite growth in aggregate online video ad revenue. And now they’re announcing a deal between YouTube and Disney/ABC to show clips and in-stream commercials on the most popular video site on the Internet.
The deal includes several ad-supported YouTube channels with professional content from Disney, including teasers and recaps for popular sitcoms from its child company ABC. Part of the revenue is slated to come from in-stream ads on this content sold by ABC. In addition to YouTube’s InVideo overlay ads and banners, Disney will also test pre-rolls with their content.
ClickZ reports that a pending YouTube redesign will highlight the professional content from Disney and other studios:
the current homepage tabs “videos,” “channels,” and “community” will be replaced with tabs for “shows,” “movies,” “music,” and “videos.” The first three tabs will display premium shows, clips, and movies from Google’s network and studio partners, all of which will be monetized with in-stream advertising. Meanwhile the “videos” channel will house amateur and semi-pro content of the sort major brand advertisers have shied away from.
The move toward professional content may show that YouTube is a little concerned about the up-and-coming Hulu.com, now number #2 in the overall video site standings. Hulu features premium television content, and has seen amazing growth since its premiere only eighteen months ago.
However, a deal with Disney may not be enough for YouTube, since, as YouTube points out,
Disney/ABC is rumored to be in talks to buy an equity stake in Hulu, the rapidly growing video entertainment portal jointly owned by News Corp. and NBC Universal. If that rumored deal takes place, ABC shows would likely become available in their entirety on Hulu — leaving YouTube out in the cold for the foreseeable future.
Should YouTube leap on this deal to try to entice Disney to get full episodes? Or is YouTube’s place set as the clip capital of the web?