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For 7UP, Pre-Roll’s Only Part Of The Video Experience

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EricBlackwood7UP is giving the thumbs up to live-streamed video.

For the second year in a row, the carbonated beverage brand is sponsoring Yahoo’s live stream of the Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC), an annual electronic dance music mecca sponsored by entertainment company Insomniac in Las Vegas this month.

Music has been on Yahoo’s mind since the NewFronts in May, when the company, in partnership with Live Nation, paraded brand integration opportunities around popular music festival live streams.

7UP was early in, particularly to reach a subset of millennials and Gen-Xers who were also dance music fanatics.

While several hundred thousand people are able to attend the EDC festival live, for Eric Blackwood, director of marketing for 7UP, it’s about reaching the “millions at home who aren’t able to go and who are really interested in the sights, sounds and music.”

“We wanted to find a way to help extend their experience,” Blackwood told AdExchanger.

Because the campaign was short-lived (three days of live-streaming from June 19-21 for nine hours each night), 7UP had to execute quickly.

Using Yahoo Ad Manager Plus and Yahoo’s Gemini, the brand served native ads featuring festival content across Yahoo properties like Yahoo Music, as well as video and display ads on the Yahoo Screen app for iOS, Android, Apple TV, Roku and Xbox. 

7UP also created a Tumblr experience, allowing fans to compile their own festival schedules and receive real-time alerts on artist sets.

“When we saw video units delivered in the live stream itself, we were able to [dynamically change out the] ad unit based on how many times consumers had already seen the content,” Blackwood said.

Although the brand is still working through initial campaign results, Blackwood noted 7UP would gauge success by looking at the number of viewers, the engagement rate and the duration of viewing.

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Yahoo’s head of ad sales, Lisa Utzschneider, noted during this year’s NewFronts that collectively Yahoo, BrightRoll and Tumblr command close to 190 million monthly active video viewers a month, with live-streaming sponsors seeing 50% lift in brand perception and likelihood to purchase.

“Obviously we want people to view the ad, but if you look at the integration itself, they’re engaging with our brand throughout the entire experience, whether it’s through pre-roll … or our logos and ads [alongside DJ] Martin Garrix through the live stream itself,” he added. “We don’t just limit ourselves to something like completion rate on a pre-roll.”

While TV still has cachet for brand awareness, Blackwood said 7UP is allocating more resources to digital video in order to drive one-to-one experiences through channels like social feeds or connected TV apps.

Although he called Yahoo’s scale “amazing,” the brand is not necessarily relegating its sponsorships to one platform. Asked if similar deals will follow for Facebook, Blackwood said 7UP will evaluate each opportunity on a case-by-case basis.

“People are viewing on every screen,” he said, “so if you don’t have the depth or ability to reach those consumers on every device or platform, you’re going to miss them.”

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