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During a late morning panel on Day 2 of ILM West, local video providers batted around the opportunity in bringing video advertising to the “other 99 percent” of small merchants.

“We know it’s evolving,” said moderator Steve Passwaiter of this democratization of video ads. “Once a television-laden experience has migrated to desktop and is now going over to mobile.”

Everyscape’s Jonathan Edson was quick to define SMB video, as “video” itself is a big word. “There’s a big difference between C-SPAN and ‘Desparate Housewives,’ ” he said. “SMB video is something specific.”

This comes down to two goals, he continued: 1 Serving local searchers with businesses they’ve never gone to, and to discover places they haven’t been. 2. Helping SMB advertisers attract those searchers.

Mixpo’s Anupam Gupta is meanwhile layering calls to action that capture these searchers’ commercial intent. This involves video overlays for more info or contact widgets, making it more of a two-way medium.

The challenge is doing this across the growing variety of screens where video is accessed. That challenge is one of formatting and platform capabilities, and also in creating unique experiences built for these access points.

As for monetizaiton potential, Gupta is big on the idea of broadening the opportunity beyond typical video ad units. that moves from limited pre-roll inventory, to unlocking potential in higher volume display inventory.

“In-stream inventory and pre-roll ad spots in local markets are limited,” he asserted. “The other way to get high-impact inventory is to think about display. A hundred percent of your online inventory then opens up to video.”

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