Virgin Media rolls out VOD advertising

Wednesday, November 25 2009,

Virgin Media has begun rolling out targeted advertising on its video on-demand platform for all Living, Virgin 1 and Bravo content.

Under the new AdPulse system, 30 second pre-roll and post-roll ads will be targeted around particular types of on-demand programming. For example, Britain's Next Top Model will be run with ads for hair care.

The system, provided by SeaChange International, will be rolled out to 300,000 Virgin Media subscribers this month before gradually expanding to 3.7m households.

The launch of targeted ads follows a three-month trial of the service in 100,000 Virgin Media homes in North London. After the pilot, 54% of users said that they felt positively about seeing ads around on-demand content and 42% stated a clear preference for ads that were relevant to what they were watching.

"With over 66 million views of on-demand content each month, there is a clear opportunity for on-demand television to deliver relevant and effective ads to a growing audience," said Virgin Media executive director of TV Cindy Rose.

"We saw a positive viewer response when we trialled dynamic advertising earlier this year and our customers welcomed campaigns that worked within the context of the programme they'd chosen to watch."

Virgin Media is also working with SeaChange to create new content aggregation options on its on-demand platform. The firm further announced a deal today with US DVR giant TiVo to develop a converged TV platform to seamlessly blend linear and on-demand content.