Close your eyes, cast your mind back to a simpler time. The year is 2010. Toy Story 3 elevates animated film to a higher level of artistic accomplishment, while simultaneously introducing millions of children to the notion of facing certain death with a brave face. David Fincher told the unofficial story of Facebook, Mel Gibson managed to sound even crazier, and the world was blessed with the ability to skip ads on YouTube.
To celebrate the fifth anniversary of skipping ads, YouTube is launching a new feature for advertisers called Cards, aimed at creating a more interactive, and seamless ad experience across desktop, mobile and TV. Cards allow advertisers to overlay more information on in-stream ads–including info about their brand, as well as related videos and playlists. In the near future advertisers will also be able to link to a website directly from a video ad.
The launch of TrueView represented a creative if counterintuitive ad solution–the platform was, after all, effectively cutting off its advertisers mid-thought. But the company also had to worry about alienating ad-weary viewers. And in the wake of the launch, in 2011, YouTube actually reported that only 30% of viewers skipped TrueView ads. YouTube says the skip function has actually forced brands to be more creative in earning our attention, and the top 100 brands are now generating 42% more views per month, according to Pixability. Besides, without skipping we never would’ve seen this Geico ad.
To complete this festivities with a few moments of branded nostalgia, here are YouTube’s Top 5 Trending Ads of 2010: