Thursday, November 07, 2013

Why Time Is A Beautiful Data Point For Creative

While the debate about the best data points in regards to media continues, it’s curious that no one seems to be debating the best data points when it comes to creative.

How should we best judge whether a commercial worked or not?

The one data point we currently have for creative is sales.  If the commercial was persuasive, then an uptick in sales should correspond to the running of the commercial.

That is, if it is seen.  And, seen by the right people.  And, when they’re in the right frame of mind.

Suffice it to say that media also has a big impact on sales.

So, how can we best “judge” a commercial in isolation?

It could be argued that time spent with the commercial is a pretty good metric.  And, it becomes an even more valuable metric, when the viewer opts into the commercial, rather than a forced view.

In a recent column, Steve Rubel - chief content strategist for Edelman - indicated some good reasons why.  First, time is an universal metric.  It can be tracked across every publisher, platform and device in every country.

Second, time is a true measure of quality.  As Rubel mentions in his piece, The more time an individual spends with a commercial, the more they are clearly paying attention.  It’s a true measure of interest in what someone has to say.

A true measure of interest in what someone has to say.

Isn’t that what a commercial first needs to create—a measure of interest—before it will have a chance in hell of persuading someone?

Time measures that interest.

It’s difficult to argue that the more time spent with a commercial, the greater the chance that persuasion will occur.

In other words, to an advertiser, more time spent with a commercial is better than less time spent.

So, time spent offers value.

Again, I’m not talking forced views.  I’m talking when people opt-in to the commercial in the first place.  Once they opt-in, the reason they stay or leave has nothing to do with media.  It’s all creative-based.

Which is why I think time is a beautiful data point for creative.

We can measure it. 

We can aggregate it.

All that’s left is to learn how to monetize it.

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