YouTube is reportedly working on a new process which would enable advertisers to create shorter, compressed versions of their video ads for usage in YouTube's 'Bumper' format - without the advertiser having to actually create those shorter clips themselves.
Sounds strange? Yeah, it kind of is.
The idea, according to TechCrunch, is that YouTube, via its new 'Bumper Machine' app, would enable advertisers to enter a longer video in, and have a much shorter video come out, which still maintains all the key ad elements.
The Bumper Machine utilizes machine learning to, as per TechCrunch's report:
"...scan a longer ad for “key elements,” like a voice-over or a tight focus on human beings or logos or products. The result always ends with the final call to action in the last two-to-three seconds of the video."
Here's an example - GrubHub entered this 13-second ad into the Bumper Machine:
It then produced this shorter variant:
Now, converting a 13-second ad into a 6-second one is less impressive than doing the same for a 90-second clip, which YouTube says will be possible. But still, all the key elements are there. If YouTube's machine learning system is actually able to identify the core aspects, and automatically compress them down, that could be a particularly handy tool for advertisers.
And the application for such may actually extend beyond YouTube itself - clips generated via the Bumper Machine could theoretically also be used in other formats, like, say, Instagram Stories. If the process works, and generates good results, the capacity to quickly, and easily, build short variations of your creative could provide major benefits.
YouTube says that the Bumper Machine, which is now being tested internally, would produce around four variants of each video for users to choose from, providing some level of human intervention in the process. It's early days, but it could be a good app to watch - we'll keep you updated on any future announcements.