OPA: Pre-Roll Ads Work, Longer Is Better

June 11, 2007

This article is included in these additional categories:

Brand Metrics | Media & Entertainment | Retail & E-Commerce

So much for marketers’ presuppositions: The much pooh-poohed 30-second pre-roll online video ad – when coupled with a display ad – is the best way to drive awareness in an online campaign, according to a study by the Online Publisher’s Association (OPA) and Online Testing eXchange (OTX).

Moreover, 30-second spots are most effective way to get across brand “likeability,” writes MediaWeek, citing the OPA study, “Frames of Reference: Online Video Advertising, Content and Consumer Behavior.”

The OPA study exposed 1,422 online video users to video content and advertising, then captured the attributes that most impact awareness, ad likeability, ad relevance, and brand consideration.

Among other key findings, according to OPA:

  • In two of the four advertising and brand metrics measured, ad length was the leading factor driving lift: 30-second ads outpaced 15-second ads for ad relevance (30% lift using 30s) and brand consideration (23% lift using 30s).
  • The study reinforced the notion of a “halo” effect from website video content affinity: If the consumer had a prior brand affinity toward an advertised brand and liked the adjacent video content, brand consideration jumped 61%; but even if the consumer’s initial attitude toward the brand was neutral or negative, brand consideration still rose 21% if the consumer liked the video content.
  • Static companion ads can play a valuable complimentary role: To lift brand awareness the combination of a pre-roll and a companion proved to be most effective.
  • The leading video content category is news/current events (14% watch daily). Weather ranks second (11% watch daily), followed by jokes /funny clips (9% watch daily).
  • Of the 80% of viewers who have watched a video ad online, 52% have taken some sort of action: checking out a website (31%), searching for more info (22%), going into a store (15%), or actually making a purchase (12%).
  • Visitors to media sites (magazine, newspaper, cable, broadcast and pure-play) were more inclined to take action after viewing a video ad than visitors to portals and user-generated content sites.
  • Of consumers who had made a purchase in the previous month, 48% said the internet drove initial awareness, 57% said they learned more using the internet, 55% used the internet to decide where to buy, and 56% made the final purchase decision using the internet.

MediaWeek adds that OPA’s study found that more than 40% of those surveyed said they watch online videos every week, and 70% said they do so at least once a month. It adds that consumers tend not to care whether the 30-second spots they watch were created specifically for the web or were simply repurposed TV spots.

About the study: The OPA/OTX research used a variety of ads – which featured everything from consumer packaged goods and financial services to airlines and pharmaceuticals – and four ad attributes, testing 96 combinations for how they impact key advertising and brand metrics. The four ad attributes were duration (15 v. 30 sec.); placement (pre-roll and post-roll); companion ad (with/without); and, advertising type (original online v. repurposed TV).

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