90 Days Later: Video Player Bidding Best Practices

Video Player Bidding helps you maximize monetization, provided you’re following these recommendations

After the launch of Video Player Bidding earlier this year, we’ve seen great adoption and some impressive  benefits, including faster time-to-first-frame for ads and a great supplemental boost of ad demand for publishers’ ad stacks. As with any great new product comes great learning experiences. With months of data and the associated on-going analysis, our goal is to educate our customers on best practices to optimize Video Player Bidding setups to maximize revenue potential.

 

 

If you’re unfamiliar with Video Player Bidding (an easy-to-implement version of video header bidding) check out our previous blog post or the great video below of JW Player cofounder Brian Rifkin and SpotX Chief Revenue Officer Sean Buckley discussing the solution, and look here for how to get started.

 

In the last three months, the data we’ve collected from Video Player Bidding has proven a few core advertising concepts we’ve recommended in other blog posts we’ve posted.

Know Your Setup

If nothing else, we’ve realized that many publishers are unclear as to the optimal player setup for their page layout and audience. This is a perfect time to do some analysis and introduce improvements and efficiencies.

 

  • Cloud-hosted vs Self-hosted

For cloud-hosted Players, we’d be remiss to not note that a publisher using a custom JavaScript embed will override any advertising settings put into the dashboard. This includes an advertising block in the Player’s JS setup.

For self-hosted Players, simply set up the advertising block with the “bids” block described in our documentation and examples.

 

  • Custom Header Bidding Solutions

We’ve found that many publishers have pre-existing header bidding solutions in place. This can present an issue with event timing depending on the implementation. Typically, the best solution is to provide the Player with a complete and finalized ad tag prior to setting up the Player. This allows publishers to take advantage of the efficiencies built into the Player’s ad scheduling functionality.

 

The example below describes how to get your custom bidding done and then set up the Player with the appropriate information so as to avoid any timing issues.

 

// Do your custom header bidding here, which should result in a created ad tag

 

var finalTag = baseTag + custParams

 

// Once you’ve built your ad tag with the appropriate key value pairs from your header bidding solution, you can set up the player

 

var playerInstance = jwplayer(“myElement”)

playerInstance.setup({

   “file”: “myVideo”,

   “advertising”: {

       “client”: “googima”,

       “schedule”: {

           “adBreak”: {

               “tag”: “finalTag”,    —— the tag supplied here is a variable, created above prior to player setup

               “offset”: “pre”

           }

       },

       “bids”: {

           “settings”: {

               “mediationLayerAdServer”: “dfp”,

           },

           “bidders”: [

               {

                   “name”: “SpotX”,

                   “id”: “85394”

               }

           ]

       }

   }

});

 

Note in this scenario, the use of the playAd API is not necessary.

 

  • Player and Site Considerations

In general we’ve found certain player setup attributes to perform better or worse with Video Player Bidding.

 

    1. Player size: Believe it or not, Video Player Bidding requires a player height and width on setup. Advertisers want to know the size and type of player their ads will be running on. We’ve found a fairly large number of publishers who are setting up the Player with null, undefined, or 0 height and width, thus giving the Player a formal size too late. This is one of the largest causes of player setup-related failures.
    2. Click-to-play vs ‘autostart:viewable’ vs autostart in view: Given the extra calls that need to be made for the bidding process, allowing the Player more time to set up and for the bidding process to complete increases the chance of success. Autostart in view typically leads to timing issues with all the other network calls on the page, so be prepared for a degradation in performance in this scenario.
    3. Multiple players on a single page: This is generally discouraged even outside of Video Player Bidding. With multiple players, it can lead to extra network requests from both the Player and the bidding process.
    4. Multiple bidding requests: Video Player Bidding is optimized for single prerolls. Bidding for multiple ad breaks, including 3+ midrolls, is not optimal due to the additional network requests it creates.

 

Mediation Options

Video Player Bidding offers multiple mediation options, each tailored to a specific publisher use case.

 

  • JW Player

This is the easiest way to get started with VPB — no additional line items are required in the Ad Server and is the most performant. If the bidder meets the static floor price, then the bidder wins. Otherwise, the Player uses the fallback tag defined in the corresponding ad break slot. Please ensure the floor in SpotX is set at or above the floor in JW.

 

The downside is the JW mediation option is not aware of any other campaigns (including direct sold) so these campaigns can be cannibalized for programmatic/header traffic. Additionally, as the floor price is static, the bidder may over/under bid for that request.

 

  • DFP

With this option, DFP determines the winner in that the bidder competes directly with DFP line items. Corresponding line items are needed in DFP.  SpotX can help with the setup of the corresponding items.

 

In this instance, please ensure that you are competing all demand in Price Priority. Competing Sponsorships and Standard line items in DFP above JWP priority will largely negate the benefits of the JWP integration. Expect very low revenue from the integration if VPB is run at a lower priority than traditional demand in DFP.

 

The downside of this mediation layer is the ads’ time-to-first-frame will be longer as the Player has to send the SpotX bid to DFP to determine the winner.

 

  • JW Player + DFP

This mediation option combines the JW Player and DFP mediation layers in that order. If the floor price isn’t beaten, the key value pairs are added to the DFP tag to compete against DFP line items. This is a good option for publishers who use DFP but want to take advantage of the performance benefits of JW Player mediation. Please ensure the floor in SpotX is set at or above the floor in JW.

 

  • SpotX

You should select this option if your primary Ad Server is SpotX. All Publisher Direct Sold demand should be run in the SpotX ad server, competing along with the Open Marketplace, allowing full control over priorities given to SpotX demand versus Publisher Sourced Demand.

 

Performance Expectations

Depending on the complexities of your setup as well as how your traffic is split between desktop and mobile, performance expectations should be managed. In short, an autostart player on a page with a large amount of other network calls on a mobile device is not optimal for Video Player Bidding.

We’re Happy to Help

We recognize that both normal Player setups and Video Player Bidding setups can be complicated, especially given your other systems and requirements.

 

For more information about improving your monetization with Video Player Bidding, schedule time to speak with a video expert.

 

Contact Us

CONTACT US

The post 90 Days Later: Video Player Bidding Best Practices appeared first on JW Player.

How to Get Started with Video Player Bidding

Integrate header bidding into your player with just one click

Until now, the potential of header bidding for video has been limited by difficult implementation and a fragmented marketplace. Video Player Bidding is a market-changing solution built for video to reduce latency and boost monetization with just one click. We’re here to help you onboard.

It’s Finally Here!

Header bidding has been an industry standard in display for a few years, but video header bidding is still cutting-edge. While video header bidding unlocks more ad revenue via increased fill rate and higher CPMs, it comes with many hurdles that most publishers haven’t been able to overcome.

 

JW Player recognized the market challenges and the incredible benefits of video advertising and knew that partnering with a top tier advertising technology company was the solution. After much due diligence, JW Player chose to team up with SpotX to offer the best integration to publishers. SpotX is a video ad serving platform that offers programmatic infrastructure for premium media owners & publishers, providing them with access to 65+ demand sources with reduced latency.

 

Now with JW8 (which is great by the way), you can finally turn on Video Player Bidding powered by SpotX with one click!

Why It Matters

Video header bidding is fragmented and difficult to implement at scale. The process is complex, requiring a lot of custom coding that can slow down your entire page as well as a fair amount of control over the page where you’re running video. If you’re motivated, it’s doable but not ideal.

 

As a publisher, you want more control over how advertisers are programmatically bidding on your video inventory. Header bidding boosts ad revenue via increased fill rates and higher CPMs, as well as provides the desired control, but there is no easy solution that leads to fast bids and ads. On the other side of the table, advertisers want more access to quality video inventory. JW Player’s Video Player Bidding is the first solution that gives both sides the control they’ve been seeking.

 

Through the integration built directly into JW Player, you can provide buyers access to player settings, content settings, and viewability data, which increase the value of your inventory. This all happens before the user clicks the player. That means no extra buffering before the ad loads and increased viewer retention.

 

Why It’s Hard

Whether you’re just starting with video header bidding or are working on integrating your fifth bidder, any integration takes some work to get set up. In the past you would need to load a script in the page header, request a bid from the bidder, wait for the response, then proceed down the path from there. This can require 100 lines of code or more on the page with multiple network requests — and all of this overhead creates latency and slows the page down!

 

Welcome to Video Player Bidding

By integrating SpotX and header bidding directly into the player, we’ve reduced a complex workflow with lots of Javascript to just one click in your JW Player dashboard:

 

Alternatively, you can use just a few lines of code in the player configuration:

 

What this means is that if you’re already running video ads with JW Player, turning on video player bidding could be as simple as one click in our dashboard. The ease of implementation is by far the biggest benefit.

Beyond the simplicity, working with one bidder like SpotX means minimal added page latency. By not requiring additional code in the header, your page load time and player setup time remain low. As we’ve evangelized in the past, and have continued to do so, this is incredibly important for user experience.

 

How Do I Get Started?

As you’d expect, the process is simple. We’ll break down your next steps:

  1. Already running ads via JW Player and have a relationship with SpotX
    • Reach out to your SpotX rep for information. You’re just a few clicks away!
    • Check out our Getting Started Guide for more details
  2. Already running ads via JW Player but aren’t yet working with SpotX
    • Visit this link to get in touch with SpotX to get started
    • SpotX will guide you through the onboarding process
    • Check out our Getting Started Guide if you have any concerns or reach out to your JW Player account manager
    • You’re good to go!
  3. Not yet a JW Player customer but have a relationship with SpotX
    • We’d love to hear from you!
    • Getting up and running with JW Player takes no time at all. If you’re migrating from another player, we’re happy to consult on the migration process
    • Once you’ve got video ads running with JW Player, turning on video player bidding is just a click away!
  4. I don’t currently work with JW Player or SpotX but I sure want to!
    • We’re excited to work with you too! Reach out to JW Player, and we’ll get you in touch with the right people and get your video ads running ASAP

 

To learn more about getting started with Video Player Bidding, schedule time to talk with one of our video experts.

 

Contact Us

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