While many are still biding their time, waiting on the full-blown merge of television and the web, Young has decided not to waste any time in keeping Klipmart vital in the high-speed age: An upcoming product announcement aims to revolutionize in-stream advertising in a similar manner as Kilpmart did for in-banner. “We’re launching a brand new universal in-stream solution,” Yound explains. “It’s playing in the content stream and allowing an advertiser to run a 30-second spot within the content stream—as opposed to in-banner, which is what Klipmart’s famous for.”
But even with his commitment to the future of in-stream proven by his company’s push to develop systems to exploit it, Young believes it’s still too early for in-stream to make a considerably big dent in the market—especially since TV buyers are still getting acclimated to in-page and in-banner ads. “It’s not to say that in-stream isn’t growing well and coming along, but there are certainly supply and demand metrics,” Young admits. “There is a lot of demand for in-stream, but there’s very little supply because the prices are through the roof. Right now, speak to a planner for Dell, and she’ll say, ‘The Internet can’t give me the reach and frequency I can get when running a 15-second TV spot on Seinfeld.’ But [at least] in-page gets a lot closer to being able to deliver comparable reach and frequency metrics that in-stream can’t get.”
Nevertheless, this “serial entrepreneur” sees a bright future for in-stream ads (sites like MySpace are already displaying them), one in which monetization, among other things, finally comes to fruition. “It’s happening, and that’s certainly a part of our vision.”
Wherever the road may take Klipmart from here, don’t expect to see them straying too far from the video lot. Chris Young’s virtually clairvoyant concept has now become a multi-billion dollar reality and, to his mind, that growth has everything to do with staying true to his original mission. “To do video the way we do it is based on a singular focus. All we do is video. In doing so, we’ve developed a really loyal base and we’re constantly innovating that. That’s what keeps us ahead of the pack.”
And with that, our conversation ceases. For Young, it’s time for more meetings, presentations and well-timed restroom breaks. The personal assistant was definitely a good call after all.