Google is looking to provide more advanced ad tools, with the addition of a new platform for creating 3D ads, and new AR and Live options for YouTube promotions.
First off, Google has announced its new 'Swirl' 3D display ad format, which will help brands provide a more interactive, engaging experience.
As explained by Google:
"Swirl brings three-dimensional assets to display advertising on the mobile web, which can help educate consumers before making a purchase. They can directly zoom in and out, rotate a product, or play an animation."
Available through Google's Display and Video 360 formats, Swirl ads will enable brands which have existing 3D assets to build them into their ad units. Google's also adding a new editor to its Poly 3D editing platform to make it easier for brands to build 3D ad experiences.
The option definitely provides a more engaging ad experience, and will give viewers more ways to 'test' products and looks before making a purchase.
Swirl ads are now available in limited beta - you can reach out to your Google account manager for more info.
Over on YouTube, Google is also rolling out another immersive ad format, though this time through AR, with an opportunity to virtually try on make-up when viewing related content.
Called 'Beauty Try-On', the new format will enable video viewers to check out related looks while following along with YouTube creators.
"Thanks to machine learning and AR technology, the option offers realistic, virtual product samples that work on a full range of skin tones."
Similar initiatives have been launched in the past - Sephora, for example, has its own 'Virtual Artist' app through which users can try on new looks via their phone camera, but 'Beauty Try-On' takes this a step further by integrating it directly into YouTube content. And given the popularity of make-up tutorial videos, you can imagine it will prove to be a valuable addition for marketers in the sector
And finally, YouTube is also looking to help live-stream creators maximize their live content, by rolling out a new ad option which will enable creators to run their YouTube live stream content within display ads, which will prompt the user to click through to see more.
As per YouTube:
"We know it takes a lot of time and resources to build [live stream] assets and we want to make it easier to get more out of your investment. The new live stream format in Display & Video 360 allows you to run your YouTube live stream content in display ads across screens and devices. People will be able to interact with the video using familiar YouTube player controls. People can preview your live stream, watch full screen, and exit when they’re done, giving them full control over how they interact with your content."
While live-stream is past its initial hype phase, it's still a highly engaging option, with Facebook noting that live-streams generate 6x as many interactions as regular videos. That makes sense, as people know others are watching at the same time, as well as the creator/host themself, so they're more likely to comment - and given such engagement drives more organic reach, it's definitely an element worth paying attention to.
All three new ad options look to advance Google's presentation options, expanding into more evolved, interactive areas, which are not well-known now, but are likely to become increasingly common, and popular among consumers. Each of these new tools offers unique considerations for advertisers, and will facilitate more engaging campaign types, which will likely help to boost campaign performance, and, eventually, raise consumer expectation.
As noted, Swirl is in a limited beta, as is YouTube's new live ad format, while 'Beauty Try-On' is currently in alpha, and available through FameBit.