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IAB Releases New Ad Unit Portfolio for Public Comment, Featuring Flexible Formats That Adapt for Cross-Screen Marketing & Align with LEAN Principles

Updated Portfolio Also Introduces Advertising Guidelines for Emerging Content Experiences, Including Virtual Reality & 360-Degree Video

NEW YORK, NY (September 26, 2016) — The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) today released a complete overhaul of the “IAB Standard Ad Unit Portfolio” for public comment, embracing brands’ growing need to reach consumers across multiple screens at scale, with ad units that integrate aspect ratio–based flexible ad sizes. These allow for creative to adjust to a variety of screen sizes and resolution capabilities. Developed by the IAB Technology Laboratory, the portfolio incorporates the LEAN Principles of lightweight, encrypted, AdChoices supported, and non-invasive advertising within all of its display, mobile, video, and native ad formats. Each of the specs is based on HTML5 technology and informed by industry surveys, user research, and testing.IAB New Ad Portfolio: What, Why, & When? 1

“It is imperative that we create new de facto standards that put user experience, control, and cross-device behaviors first – and this new portfolio delivers,” said Randall Rothenberg, President and CEO, IAB. “Its flexible ad units will allow for creative to scale to different sizes without losing any of its original messaging and impact. In addition, by incorporating the tenets of LEAN into the portfolio, consumer experience on ad-supported sites will greatly improve. Brands are sure to reap the benefits.”

The revised portfolio also introduces guidelines for new content experiences like virtual reality and 360-degree video ads, as well as digital advertising that uses emojis, stickers, and more.

“This new portfolio reflects the diverse ways that digital is being enjoyed by consumers, whether on websites, in mobile apps, through social media platforms, or elsewhere,” said Alanna Gombert, Senior Vice President, Technology and Ad Operations, IAB, and General Manager, IAB Tech Lab. “Besides offering a beautiful, responsive ‘consumer first’ ad experience, it brings emerging ad formats to the forefront, from marketing within virtual reality content to using emojis to share a brand message. All in all, this rethinking of the IAB Standard Ad Unit Portfolio will set the stage for marketers, agencies, and creatives to approach the future with the utmost confidence in digital’s ability to effectively reach and captivate audiences.”

The public comment period will run through November 28, 2016, after which the IAB Flex Ads Working Group will evaluate the comments received, make any necessary revisions, and release a final version. Comments are being accepted via email to [email protected].

Once the portfolio is finalized, IAB and the IAB Tech Lab will support the transition from the earlier standards through a series of webinars, the release of user-friendly visuals of the new ad units, as well as additional transition guidance and tools. In addition, adoption of the portfolio will be supported by an updated file weight-sizing grid to better allow for ease-of-use and innovation., Bloomberg Media, Flashtalking, Flite, GroupM, Improve Digital, Neuranet,, Sizmek, Smart Ad server, and Spongecell took part in initial testing for the development of the revised portfolio. Representatives from Cox Media Group, Kargo, and Spongecell led efforts on the IAB Flex Ads Working Group.

The new ad portfolio was released at the IAB MIXX Conference in New York City. To download more information and review the ad unit specs, please go to

About IAB Technology Laboratory
The IAB Technology Laboratory is an independent, international, nonprofit research and development consortium charged with producing and helping companies implement global industry technical standards. Comprised of digital publishers and ad technology firms, as well as marketers, agencies, and other companies with interests in the interactive marketing arena, the IAB Tech Lab’s goal is to reduce friction associated with the digital advertising and marketing supply chain, while contributing to the safe and secure growth of the industry. The organization’s founding member companies include AppNexus, Google, Hearst Magazines Digital Media, PubMatic, Tremor Video, Yahoo, and Yahoo! JAPAN. Established in 2014, the IAB Tech Lab is headquartered in New York City with an office in San Francisco.

About IAB
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) empowers the media and marketing industries to thrive in the digital economy. It is comprised of more than 650 leading media and technology companies that are responsible for selling, delivering, and optimizing digital advertising or marketing campaigns. Together, they account for 86 percent of online advertising in the United States. Working with its member companies, the IAB develops technical standards and best practices and fields critical research on interactive advertising, while also educating brands, agencies, and the wider business community on the importance of digital marketing. The organization is committed to professional development and elevating the knowledge, skills, expertise, and diversity of the workforce across the industry. Through the work of its public policy office in Washington, D.C., the IAB advocates for its members and promotes the value of the interactive advertising industry to legislators and policymakers. There are 42 IABs licensed to operate in nations around the world and one regional IAB, in Europe. Founded in 1996, the IAB is headquartered in New York City and has a West Coast office in San Francisco.

IAB Media Contact
Laura Goldberg
[email protected]