YouTube to Offer Video Ads

YouTube, the popular video-sharing site, will soon start selling video advertisements to be displayed on its homepage and on pages specially generated by its advertising customers, in a move meant to bring in additional revenue and influence the way customers purchase ad space, as well as what formats they choose to advertise in, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Warner Bros. Records, a division of Time Warner, will be YouTube’s first customer to launch an advertiser page, and it will include promotions for Paris Hilton’s new music album, which is slated for release today, according to the Journal. In addition, Fox Broadcasting, a division of News Corp.—which competes with Time Warner—will pay to push its Prison Break television series on the Paris Hilton page, and both YouTube and Warner Bros. will take in some of that cash, the Journal reports.

San Mateo, Calif.-based YouTube claims that videos on its site are watched more than 100 million times a day, and it sold ads on its pages in the past in display and text formats, according to the Journal.

YouTube is not only looking to wade into new advertising waters, but the firm also wants to eventually help introduce new ad formats and become a “middle man” for advertisers and sites looking to sell ad space, similar to how Google brokers ads for sites, the Journal reports.

Chad Hurley, YouTube chief executive officer, told the AP the site’s future direction “revolves around the idea of having brand advertisers participate and become part of our community.”

YouTube will also let its ad customers pay more to have their advertisements placed in obvious spots on its homepage, though those customers won’t pay based on how many YouTube users actually click their link, according to the AP; rather, they’ll be charged based on the number of Web surfers who visit the YouTube homepage altogether.

Check out our CIO News Alerts and Tech Informer pages for more updated news coverage.

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