Selectable Media Raises $2 Million From Avalon Ventures For Choosable Video Ads

There’s lots of free content on the web and in mobile apps. But there’s also a whole lot of content that users want but aren’t willing to pay for — and that publishers aren’t willing to give up for free. Enter Selectable Media, which solves that problem by getting users to “pay” for things by opting in to viewing brand video advertising. And it’s raised $2 million in Series A funding from Avalon Ventures.

Selectable Media lets publishers better monetize their games and other content by creating incentives to watch high-CPM video advertising. All they need to do is place a piece of JavaScript code in their website or app and Selectable Media will offer viewers the chance to unlock content by choosing to watch a video ad.

Since it’s all opt-in, and since there’s a clear value exchange for users, they’re more likely to stick around and actually watch an ad, esp when compared to typical pre-rolls. More than half of users opt-out of watching a video when a pre-roll starts, according to Selectable Media CEO Matt Minoff, but his company has a completion rate for its brand video ads above 90 percent. That’s good news, since Selectable Media sells its ads on a cost per completed view metric — in other words, it doesn’t get paid unless viewers actually finish watching an ad.

The idea has been particularly popular with game publishers, who use the ad unit as a way for users to “level up” or get access to game items more quickly by watching an ad. But the units could also be used by other publishers to unlock content — for instance, exclusive multimedia assets or longer-form video content.

On the advertiser side, it’s already had a bunch of big brands using its platform. Companies like NBC, Wendy’s, Kraft, HBO, and Samsung have used the platform to deliver their ads. Today, most publishers have chosen to partner with Selectable Media and run ads that it sells, sharing in the revenue. But publishers can also sell their own ads to be delivered through the platform.

To expand its headcount and get more publishers and advertisers on board, Selectable Media is announcing today that it has raised $2 million in Series A funding from Avalon Ventures. The company currently has 22 employees and is headquartered in lovely New York City.