Thursday, September 23, 2010

Creative Is Four Times As Important As Media Weight In Driving Ad Effectiveness

This is probably something everyone always knew but didn’t want to admit.

But the ARS Group, an ad effectiveness company, recently released the figures that spell the facts out in black and white.

Add to that the Dynamic Logic repoprt released just a few days ago that original advertising that is produced for the online space is far more likely to influence purchase decisions than repurposed spots.

What’s more, according to Dynamic Logic, original commercials are more effective after a single exposure, while repurposed commercials are more effective after at least four exposures.

And finally, due to their original content, custom commercials typically “engage” consumers the most upon first exposure.

So why is this a problem?

Because the business model for creating great original advertising is based on scale. Advertisers don’t mind paying half a million or more for a commercial if they know it will be seen by 50 million or more people.

Which most likely won’t happen online.

So advertisers repurpose old spots. And media agencies and publishers make more money for running less efficient advertising.

What the industry needs is a digital mindchange when it comes to the business models currently used to create advertising.

A few columns back, I talked about a hedge fund for creative development. Advertisers could hedge their bets when it comes to creating content, paying only for the amount of time that viewers are engaged with the commercial.

There are currently ways for advertisers to hedge their bets when buying time for commercials. Why not a way for advertisers to hedge their bets when creating those commercials?

What we know is that creative is four times as important as media weight in driving ad effectiveness. Great creative increases a viewer’s share of time with a message.

In other words, it’s share of time, not share of voice, that leads to greater share of mind, and ultimately, share of market.

The talk today is about how new business models are needed for the ad industry. Until the focus shifts to talking about share of time over share of voice, about how long rather than how many; any and all “new” business model recommendations will continue to search for solutions to the wrong problem.

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