Why The First 4 – 6 Seconds Of Your Online Advertising Is So Critical
What could be more annoying than a commercial intruding on your computer time? How about not having a button to skip it. If you have ever gotten frustrated by online ads that got in the way of what you were doing on your computer, you’re not alone. According to a recent study by Accenture, a leading provider of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology, and operations, 42 per cent of the 28,000 consumers surveyed say that they would pay to eliminate advertising interruptions.
Several conclusions can be drawn from the results of this study.
- The ads suck. The creative in most online commercials isn’t interesting, so it’s no wonder viewers want to escape. And almost none of the online ads do anything interesting in the first few seconds of the ad.
- Most online commercials force viewers to watch at least four seconds before they can opt out. Advertisers have four precious seconds to tell their story, yet none of the ads are set up to make their point in the allotted time.
- The creative needs to be changed to fit the four-second intro/15-second format. While the key message needs to be delivered in four seconds, the ad should also draw the consumer into the rest of the commercial to reinforce the intro. The goal is to get the viewer to spend more of the 15 seconds that the brand is allocated for its advertising space.
- The ads need not be viral, but they should always be engaging. Remember, you have four seconds to capture them. If “Psycho Kid” McJuggerNuggets is posting videos that grab more attention than your advertising creative, you’re in trouble.
- The advertising in this new process needs to be simpler. For example, if IHOP wants to tell a story about some new flavor of pancake, they need to do go about it differently than traditional advertising. They need to treat the pancakes (their message desire) as an “oh” and “by the way” element of the ad. So you might have a fun-loving family looking at or ordering the new pancakes, but that’s not the real focus of the advertising. The mood evokes more of a real housewives feel with the creative revolving around the family doing something funny, clumsy, crazy, outrageous, or extreme.
When your potential customers watch a video online, they're obligated to sit though the first few seconds and then they can skip the ad if they don't like what they're watching. So the first 4 – 6 seconds of your online advertising has to be able to tell the whole story. Which means second one needs to introduce the product, second two needs to introduce the story, second three needs to introduce the offer and second four needs to ask for the order. And it all has to be done in a way that’s at least as interesting to your audience as McJuggerNuggets.
How hard can that be, right?
Here is an example of what Hardee's might do to introduce their new Aunt Anne's Breakfast Pretzel Sandwich in the first 6 seconds:
Mark and Kelly Laux have been working in the food industry since the mid-1980s, developing award-winning, profit-generating marketing and advertising programs promoting national brands to foodservice companies and restaurant operators all over the country. Call 800-316-3198 to reach Mark and Kelly.