Traffic in-stream video creatives

Video creatives overview


Video creative types

There are three main types of video creatives you’ll work with in Campaign Manager 360:

  • In-stream video: These creatives typically contain a single video and are not interactive.
  • In-stream video redirect: These creatives allow Campaign Manager 360 to track other in-stream video creatives, including those that are running on a non-Campaign Manager 360 ad server. The in-stream video redirect creative has no assets and redirects to a VAST URL you specify. Learn more about in-stream video redirects.
  • Video Player-Ad Interface Definition (VPAID): This is a rich media creative that is delivered as an additional media asset type within a VAST tag. VPAID is typically used for ad interactivity in a publisher’s in-stream video player. VPAID creatives can pause or mute the video player and bring up their own content, including interactive options. Similar to VAST, a publisher needs to be VPAID compliant in order to render VPAID assets correctly. Learn more about VPAID in Campaign Manager 360.

In-stream video and in-stream video redirect creatives can be added directly to Campaign Manager 360, while interactive VPAID ads are created in Studio and synced to Campaign Manager 360. All three formats are delivered through pre-fetch placement tags, which deliver VAST content.

About VAST in Campaign Manager 360

Video Ad Serving Template (VAST) is a video tag format based on XML designed to standardize communication between video players and servers, facilitating traffic across various publishing platforms. VAST tags package all video serving files, companions, and tracking pixels for delivery into the publisher’s video player. The publisher’s video player is in charge of rendering and serving these assets and must be VAST complaint in order to accept VAST tags. Released by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), the VAST template accounts for most of the current practices in the online digital video advertising business.

Campaign Manager 360 is VAST 2.0, VAST 3.0, and VAST 4.0 compliant and provides placement tags for each type. VAST 3.0 is backwards compatible with VAST 2.0 and offers more features, such as support for OBA icons and skippable linear ads. VAST 4.0 is backwards compatible with VAST 3.0 and offers support for mezzanine files and universal ad IDs. Always check the IAB’s specifications (2.0 , 3.0, 4.0) to see what features are available on each version of VAST.

Components of an in-stream video creative

Video file

The raw video asset you upload to Campaign Manager 360 is known as your source file. Your developer may provide multiple versions of the video, and Campaign Manager 360 will also transcode your assets. Transcodes are alternate versions of your source file that have different formats or properties, each designed for specific video players or bandwidths.

Your source file plus any other versions are all serving files. These serving files each have the same video content as your original asset, just in different formats or with different properties.

You can also add URLs for publisher-hosted videos. The video player uses these URLs to load video content.

Many publishers require a high-quality source file instead of transcoded versions. This is called the mezzanine file. Your uploaded source file will be included as the mezzanine file in VAST 4.0 tags.

If you include multiple serving files and/or URLs, the publisher's system can choose the best version of your asset for each impression, based on factors such as device type, connection speed, and the video player on the site. Including multiple serving files can also allow users to select different resolution settings when viewing your video.
Companion creatives (optional)

You can add image or HTML5 assets for Campaign Manager 360 to display around the publisher’s audio or video player. They are delivered in the same VAST tag as your serving files. Companions serve while the primary content is playing and remain after it's completed.


First a media planner works with the site and creative developer to get assets ready. Then a trafficker sets up creatives to serve in Campaign Manager 360.

Media planning
  1. The advertiser and site publisher make an agreement to show ads with video creatives.
  2. The media planner confirms that the site can support in-stream video creatives per the IAB VAST standard 2.0. 3.0, or 4.0.
  3. The media planner collects site specifications for the video creative, such as format, resolution, and dimensions/orientation. These details ensure the creative is right for that particular site.
  4. The developer packages the video creative based on the site specifications.
  5. The developer and media planner make sure the trafficker has the necessary video assets and tracking URL information to set up the ad in Campaign Manager 360.

Click here for detailed media planning steps.


After media planning is completed, the trafficker uses Campaign Manager 360 to set up ads to deliver the video creative to the site.

  1. The trafficker gathers videos assets from the developer and media planner. The trafficker also confirms any landing pages or other tracking URLs (impression pixels, click trackers, etc.).
  2. The trafficker adds videos assets from the developer into Campaign Manager 360. These might be uploaded files or just a URL to publisher-hosted video. The trafficker may use dynamic asset selection if they’re setting up multiple assets with the same creative message.
  3. The trafficker sets up the in-stream creative properties in Campaign Manager 360. These properties help identify the video creative in reporting and determine how it displays content.
  4. The trafficker may also add companion creatives and include third-party URLs that log data about the creative, including user interactions.
  5. Now the trafficker assigns the creative to ads and the ads to placements.
  6. The trafficker generates tags for placements that have the creatives, tests the tags, and sends them to the publisher (or makes them available for download via our publisher paid system).
  7. The trafficker handles any post-launch issues and checks reporting.
Click here to get started with trafficking.

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