For many years, we've been discussing that ads are content and that content are ads -- and thinking that the two are somehow separate limits your business model options. A few weeks back, at the Mesh Conference, someone asked the panel I was on how advertising would evolve on YouTube. Specifically, they seemed to want to know if there would be preroll or postroll ads to monetize YouTube. My response was that's the wrong way of thinking about it. Most of the content on YouTube is an advertisement in some form -- whether on purpose or not. It could be an ad for the person in the video or the maker of the video. Or, it could be an advertisement for something else. Take, for example, the case of the now quite famous Dove ad. They created video ad and tossed it up on YouTube where it's received tremendous attention. The whole thing cost Dove about $50,000 and got them a ridiculous amount of exposure. Dove isn't complaining that people are viewing their "content" for free online. They're recognizing that it helps to sell other products.
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