IMMERSV LAUNCHES AD PLATFORM FOR VR APPS: In an attempt to get ahead of the impending wave of virtual reality content that will follow the widespread adoption of new VR headsets, former smartphone ad companies are looking for ways to promote VR ads. One such offering is Immersv, a new ad platform for VR content.

The platform, which launched last Thursday, works in a similar way to pre-roll ads, such as those on Facebook or YouTube. For example, a VR user playing a game or watching a video may be shown an ad for separate content and would then be given the option to download the app.

The benefit of VR video advertising is that it provides advertisers with the opportunity to fully immerse consumers in their world — on mobile, interactive videos are much more engaging than static ads, notes IAB. But the early stage of the VR market makes serving ads complicated. This is in part because of new formatting challenges associated with converting videos to run on VR devices, but also because developers don’t want to run the risk of upsetting users so early on with intrusive ads.

To address this concern Immersv ads are played like movie trailers, and require opt-in acceptance from consumers. Early trials of the new ad format suggest that consumers are taking to it. So far, its video ads have reported 80% completion rates. While promising, this is probably due in part to the novelty factor of the new technology and may not be representative of eventual completion rates.

But Immersv isn’t the only VR ad platform to emerge. Last year, another mobile ad network called AirPush went live with VirtualSky, its VR ad platform, with similarly high levels of interest from VR developers, according to Business Insider.  And as the smartphone ad industry gets increasingly competitive, it’s likely that other mobile ad tech groups will make the shift as well.

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