TV Advertising Effectiveness
Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share
18 February 2019
Measuring TV advertising effectiveness
I found a new study utterly hilarious as it says as much about the state of TV advertising effectiveness as it does about attention spans.
A study from Tobii Pro Insight says about 60% of TV advertising goes unwatched by viewers, using eye-tracking glasses with 150 US homes.
Now, I don’t know how applicable measuring TV advertising effectiveness can be with those glasses. But I don’t doubt that number is far off.
You see, so much TV advertising is simply money and time wasted. I know, I’ve beaten that drum enough for it to sound like a Neil Peart solo. But there are so many reasons why advertising is easy to ignore that I bet that 60% number is actually higher.
Think about the Super Bowl ads. The pinnacle of TV advertising effectiveness, supposedly. We’re a few weeks removed from the New England Patriots’ victory and how many ads can you recall? You probably paid closer attention to TV ads during the Super Bowl than during regular TV viewing. But I can’t remember a single one.
“So what are advertisers to do? Well, one reason why those entertainment as advertising spots don’t work is they mean nothing to us. For us to notice any form of advertising we have to see ourselves in them.”
TV advertising effectiveness sits at an all-time low
So much of TV advertising is entertainment, not created to steal market share. However, according to this study, even those ads aren’t even working as entertainment. They’re just bland, boring and predictable.
We’re oversaturated by ads as entertainment. TV advertising effectiveness is probably even worse when you consider second screens (people looking at their phones during commercial breaks). Our go-to response to most TV breaks is to check our phones.
We’ve also been conditioned to consider TV advertising a waste of our time by some streaming services that skip ads altogether. (Hulu being the exemption.)
So what are advertisers to do? Well, one reason why those entertainment as advertising spots don’t work is they mean nothing to us. For us to notice any form of advertising we have to see ourselves in them.
If an ad sported a picture of you then you would notice. That’s how to increase your TV advertising effectiveness. Presenting a brand or message that represents a self-reflection of the viewer.
Sixty percent? I’d guess the respondents were hyper aware of what they were watching because of the glasses. Meaning, the reality, considering today’s TV landscape, is more like 80% or higher.
Forget recall. We don’t even notice today’s advertising.
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