Thursday, April 25, 2024

Warner Bros. Discovery Unveils 6-Second Pre-Roll Ads for Sports Digital Platforms

Warner Bros. Discovery has announced its six-second pre-roll ad product, a consumer-focused offering that has been successful for partners across WBD digital properties including Bleacher Report and House of Highlights. The product launched quietly in Q1 2023 with strategic clients including Vivid Seats. Since its introduction to the wider marketplace in Q2, additional premium clients have utilised the six-second ad tied to the biggest games and sports moments, as well as highlights, polls, live video, recaps and episode clips that serve as cultural touchpoints for fans.

In time for the 2023 NBA Draft on June 22, House of Highlights’ Through the Wire Live Draft Show will launch the six-second product with Straight Talk, the no-contract wireless service owned by Verizon. The partnership includes a custom pre-roll spot featuring show hosts Kenny Beecham, Pierre Andresen, Mike Heard and Darrick Miller, who will be reacting live to all of the picks and surprises throughout NBA Draft night.

“Bleacher Report and House of Highlights attract a highly engaged audience of young sports fans, and this high value offering empowers partners to enhance their brand messaging in ways that capitalise on evolving viewing and consumption behaviours,” said Seth Ladetsky, Senior Vice President, Ad Sales, Warner Bros. Discovery.

“The Warner Bros. Discovery sports portfolio reaches every type of fan — from the sports fanatic to the casual viewer — across leagues and platforms, while offering our partners organic ways to connect with those audiences,” said Jon Diament, Executive Vice President, Ad Sales, Warner Bros. Discovery.

“We are excited to be one of the first brands to partner with Bleacher Report and House of Highlights with this first-to-market, custom pre-roll ad unit,” said Cheryl Gresham, CMO of the Verizon Value portfolio of brands, which includes Straight Talk.

WBD Sports’ strategic investments in video across Bleacher Report and House of Highlights has delivered triple-digit growth in video starts — up 121% in May 2023 vs. May 2022 — powered by engaging live video franchises, including the B/R Gridiron Draft Show and Creator League, as well as headline-making vodcasts like Taylor Rooks X, The Voncast and On Base with Mookie Betts.

As the most engaging online sports publisher with more than 100 million followers across its channels, Bleacher Report’s fan-first approach has created a direct connection with audiences and enabled communities to build across its platforms. House of Highlights creates content that fans care about, focused on delivering stories on compelling topics that leave a lasting impact on audiences.

In line with all of Warner Bros. Discovery advertising offerings, six-second pre-roll ads can extend clients’ reach across the larger portfolio using RE/FORM, YouTube, and Twitter. The offering is optimised for social assets and allows Bleacher Report to build off the success of its branded content offerings.

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