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Ready, Set, Reformat: What The Google Mandate Means For Agencies

Chances are most of you reading have no idea what the Google mandate even is, and why would you? It has been a relatively low-key announcement by the digital giant — who commands roughly 40% of the digital ad market — but it has some serious implications for the agency world.

In November 2016, Google announced that all major browsers (including Chrome) will start replacing traditional Flash technologies with HTML5. Why? Put simply, the HTML5 code base — which actually consists of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript — is available on more devices, provides improved security, and results in faster page load times.

Here is a transition timeline:

As of yesterday (April 3rd), you can no longer upload Flash Video, and on July 3rd, Flash Video serving will completely stop.

So, what does this mean for agencies?

google mandate

Well, at the moment Flash Video ads are still prevalent across the digital ecosystem, and the support infrastructure is not something that just springs to life overnight. Agencies now must start the tedious task of not only redoing their creatives, but adjusting their media planning to ensure that individual publishers support the new format.

On top of all that? Client KPIs are typically based off of viewability. And most publisher plugins for viewability and verification are built on Flash, which also needs to change to the new format.

So, there is obviously a lot to be done as the final deadline approaches, and there are several sides of the formula that need to align. Hopefully agencies and publishers find the time to get on the same page before Flash Video becomes completely obsolete.


This article originally appeared on LinkedIn.