Nov 8, 2017

Six second ads and consumers

Seems like the whole of advertising industry is moving towards shorter ad formats. Driven primarily by behemoths YouTube and Facebook, and taken up by other digital publishers, even TV is embracing six seconders as the next big thing. Is this just us admitting to the fact that consumer attention spans are rapidly shrinking or just that we can't be bothered to properly craft the story with the time and attention it deserves or maybe a combination of both?

There's definitely a strong case which can be made for the six-seconder. A brand which has already reached threshold levels in awareness may benefit by using it to amp up the frequency, and thereby, top-of-mind recall - major FMCG brands being an obvious example. There are also many brands with creatives which are worth watching over and over, in infinite loops of six seconds each. But when everyone jumps on the bandwagon, I'm not too hopeful the thinking will last, and we will end up being pummelled by them.

In a hyper-fragmented landscape of infinitely scrolling timelines and unlimited media choices, the primary benchmark by which creative and media efficacy should be measured is very simple - relevance. Are we reaching the right audience in the right context and telling her a story that she finds useful, and maybe even enjoys? Chances are, she will appreciate the effort and remember us for it. Or would we rather cop out and hope that she forgives us the six second intrusion, since there's so much less of it to hate?

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