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Video ads a menace to brand safety in Vietnam - report

By Vien Thong   May 11, 2017 | 02:09 pm GMT+7
Video ads a menace to brand safety in Vietnam - report
Vietnam found over 8,000 videos with wrongful content on YouTube in February. Photo by Reuters

Regional rankings place Vietnam as the second-most at risk country from harmful content in Southeast Asia.

Video advertisements in Vietnam, mostly on YouTube, are a serious threat to brand safety, and the second most dangerous in Southeast Asia after Indonesia, according to global technology and data company Integral Ad Science (IAS).

Indonesia’s video ads were at the highest risk, with 15.3 percent of ad impressions flagged for appearing alongside content deemed unsafe, while its display ad risk was second highest in the region at 5 percent after Malaysia, Marketing Magazine reported, citing IAS data on brand risk in the online environment during the second half of 2016.

Following closely behind Indonesia for video brand safety risks was Vietnam, with 13.2 percent of video ads dubbed as a risk to brand safety, while its display ad risk was relatively low at 4.2 percent, the report said.

Malaysia’s brand safety risk was the highest for display ads at 6.7 percent, while its brand safety risk for video ads was also relatively high at 7.1 percent.

Thailand’s online environment posed the lowest threat to brand safety in Southeast Asia, with only 1.6 percent of display and 2.2 percent of video ads appearing on unsafe websites.

Singapore had the second safest online environment after Thailand, with only 2.7 percent of its display ads and 4.6 percent of its video ads featuring in unsafe environments.

In February, Vietnam’s Ministry of Information and Communications found more than 8,000 videos containing distorted historical facts about the country on YouTube. These videos featured advertisements for several major Vietnamese brands but the companies in question said they did not control where there ads appeared.

The government subsequently called on all companies doing business in the country to stop advertising on YouTube, Facebook and other social media until they find a way to halt the publication of "toxic" anti-government information.

“We withdrew our ads from YouTube as soon as we were being warned by the authorities. We do not want our brands to appear alongside toxic content,” Nguyen Tran Hung Long, senior media manager at Masan Group Corporation, told VnExpress.

These warnings have reminded businesses to pay more attention to brand safety on the internet, said Vinamilk marketing manager Pham Minh Tien.

Nearly 49 million people in Vietnam, or more than half of the country’s population, are online. A Nielsen survey released last September found that 92 percent of them watch online videos at least once a week, and 64 percent are daily viewers.

YouTube and Facebook account for two-thirds of the digital media market share in Vietnam, according to Nguyen Khoa Hong Thanh, operations director at digital marketing agency Isobar Vietnam.