VidMob, whose platform provides clients access to thousands of video post-production professionals, is expanding its scope, announcing this morning that it is launching a self-service ad platform for Snapchat. This means that small-to-medium sized businesses will be able to buy, create and manage video ad campaigns through one interface. To date only larger brands and agencies have been able to buy Snap Ads.
As Alex Collmer, CEO and founder of VidMob told me in a briefing, the combination of video ad creation and media buying on Snapchat essentially unlocks a whole new audience opportunity for smaller businesses. A key challenge for Snap Ads is that they are vertical and full screen on mobile devices - still a relatively unique ad format that often requires new creative to be developed.
Just 2 weeks ago, VidMob became a Snap Ads Creative API partner, so ads created by VidMob video editors are more easily approved by Snap. Alex said there are many VidMob producers who have specific skills in how to optimize Snap Ads video ads, as well as formats and content unique to other social platforms.
For Snapchat, VidMob’s ability to create ads and then enable campaign management is directionally comparable to how Google enables advertisers to utilize AdWords for search ad-buying and creative development (except mainly in text). Ahead of its pending IPO, Snap is much earlier in its monetization efforts, so VidMob’s integration is no doubt the first part of a longer term, robust strategy for vastly broadening the addressable universe of potential advertisers.
Meanwhile, aside from its new Snap Ads deal, VidMob’s core post-production platform and marketplace now includes over 5,000 professionals. Alex said clients include publishers such as Hearst and Meredith, which want to ramp up the volume of video they’re producing for their own sites and also uniquely tailored to specific social platforms. Many agencies and advertisers are also using VidMob similarly. For all of them, VidMob offers post-production resources that extend the capabilities of in-house teams.
VidMob does not get involved with shooting the underlying video, as Alex doesn’t see a core problem with video capture given the proliferation of cameras. Instead, clients upload their raw footage, which can be combined with stock media. VidMob offers a workflow platform enabling asset transfers, private communications between the client and editor and draft reviews.
VidMob has also innovated around the process for matching clients and editors. Rather than the typical model of clients submitting projects and getting numerous bids from editors, VidMob is pursuing more of an AirBnB-type approach, where editors start by submitting information about their capabilities. Then when a client submits a project, VidMob runs an algorithm that auto-creates initial bids which the client can review. The goal is to reduce some of the friction for clients with differing skill levels to find the appropriate editor.
Alex stressed that the underlying drivers of VidMob’s adoption are not just the massive increase in video consumption, but the fact that there are a variety of formats and specific nuances involved in succeeding with each. VidMob’s editors have developed skills to capitalize on these nuances. Overall, VidMob brings both this expertise and reduced friction plus cost benefits to the production process. With no slowdown in sight for video adoption, VidMob’s runway looks very strong.