Leahy.youtube YouTube is broadly launching a program which allows video producers to insert their own promotional overlay ads into their clips.  They call it Call-to-Action overlays.

Since March, the company has extended the free use of the new tool to several non-profits and has it been used by some publishers. 

It has apparently gone well and it is now available to anyone with a YouTube channel.

Advertisers pay on CPC basis. The overlay is a free feature for anyone running a campaign via Promoted Videos.

While YouTube sells overlay ads to advertisers seeking to exposure across various parts of its network, this is the first time that any video producer can buy a banner ad on their own YouTube channel and have it link off of the site, to the owner's home page. 

This could be a productive way for companies and organizations to increase traffic and transactions from visitors to YouTube clips. 

And for YouTube, it is a new revenue source.  How many YouTube viewers will actually click on an overlay is hard to say, but since the overlay relates to the message of the video, we expect click-through rates will be above average.

Above is a still image of a Senator Patrick Leahy clip promoting the Bush Truth Commission.

Andy Plesser, Executive Producer