How to create a VAST ad item

This guide will show you how to add a VAST ad item to a campaign, assign the campaign to a VAST ad zone zone, and get the zone tag. To learn how to create campaigns, read About campaigns. To learn how to create zones, read About zones.

In this guide, you will learn:

  1. What a VAST ad item is.
  2. How to add a VAST wrapper that connects to a third-party server.
  3. How to add a linear ad.
  4. How to add a non-linear ad.
  5. How to assign a VAST campaign to a VAST ad zone.
  6. How to set a VAST ad item zone tag.

VAST ad items

A Video Ad Serving Template (VAST) ad item is meant to be played or displayed within a video player, such as the ads in YouTube videos. Aside from supporting various video and image files, VAST allows AdButler to track various indicators of user behavior, such as how long someone watched an ad or if they muted it. AdButler currently supports the VAST 2.0 specification.


Step 1: Add a VAST ad item

When adding a VAST ad item, you can choose to add a linear ad, a non-linear ad, or to simply point to a third-party resource using a wrapper.

  1. Create a VAST campaign.
  2. Go to the campaign's dashboard (Advertisers > Your Advertiser > Your Campaign).
  3. Click on Add New under the VAST Ad Items table. The New VAST Ad window will appear. From here, you can:

Add a VAST wrapper

  1. In the Summary tab, give the VAST ad item a name. The click through link is optional.
  2. Under Assets, check Use a Wrapper Ad.
  3. Paste the wrapper ad URI from the third-party server.
  4. Click Save Ad Item.

Add a linear ad

  1. In the Summary tab, give the VAST ad item a name and add a click through link.
  2. Click on the Linear Media tab.

  1. Under Linear Media Files, enter the URL of the online media source, select a file in the Media Library, or upload a file from your computer.
Be sure to upload multiple compatible versions of the file, and check that their filenames are valid. Uploading multiple files ensures that there will always be a file compatible with a user's browser. For more information, read VAST File Recommendations.
  1. Click Advanced Options if you need to specify other settings, such as enabling scalability, maintaining the aspect ratio, or adding the parameters for executable media files or interactive files.
  2. Click Save Ad Item.

Add a non-linear ad

  1. In the Summary tab, give the VAST ad item a name and add a click through link.
  2. Click on the Non Linear Media tab.

  1. Under Non Linear Media Ads, enter the URL of the online media source, select a file in the Media Library, or upload a file from your computer.
Externally hosted files can have compatibility issues with certain video players. Add the files to the Media Library or upload them from your computer to ensure that your non-linear ad will be properly served.
  1. If the image is from an online source, select its file type and enter its dimensions in the appropriate fields.
  2. Click Advanced Options if you need to specify other settings, such as the bitrate, the codec, or the required API for interactive files.
  3. Click Save Ad Item.

Step 2: Assign the VAST campaign to a VAST ad zone

  1. If you already have a VAST ad zone, skip to step 2. Otherwise, create a VAST zone.
  2. Go to the VAST campaign's dashboard (Advertisers > Your Advertiser > Your Campaign).
  3. Click Assign to Zone under the Zone Assignments table.
  4. Select the VAST zone to which you want the campaign to be assigned.
  5. Choose a serve method. The rest of the settings will appear.

  1. Configure the settings as needed. For more information, read Pacing & Schedule, Targeting, and Activity limits.
  2. Click Save Placement.

Step 3: Set the VAST ad item zone tag

  1. Go to the publisher's dashboard (Publishers > Your Publisher).
  2. Click on the Zone Tags globe icon on the far right of the zone to which you assigned the VAST campaign. The Zone Tags window will appear.

  1. Ensure that the Protocol is set to https (Default).
  2. Copy the link and paste it into your video player. You can also email the link from the Zone Tags window.
You can use Google's VAST inspector tool to test your setup.

Can't find what you're looking for?

Send us an email

hello@adbutler.com

Visit the blog

For more ad serving tips, industry news and AdButler insights.