Ads should tell unique stories, said consumers responding to a recent Adobe survey. It seems those respondents are joined by others: new research from Latitude suggests that 92% of TV-viewing smartphone owners across 3 major markets believe that brands have an opportunity to make ads feel more like a story or game, by simulating entertainment-based narratives. So what types of creative elements can brands include in “next-gen” advertising?
According to the research, respondents would like to see more ads that:
- feature a deal (47%);
- provide back-story about how a product came to be, how it was made, etc. (33%);
- offer unique experiences in the real world, such as in retail stores (32%);
- offer unique experiences on different devices or platforms (31%);
- feature a contest or competition (30%);
- feel like normal content they’d choose to engage with, but are sponsored by a brand (29%);
- let them interact with them in a way that feels more game-like or visually immerseive (26%);
- are using new kinds of social media like Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc. (23%);
- are seamlessly integrated into the respondent’s favorite contest, such as through characters that use the brand’s products (22%);
- encourage the consumer to interact with other fans (21%); and
- allow the consumer to make a purchase or donate money directly from their TV (18%).
The inspiration for those options came from a separate survey of early adopters by the researchers. It’s also worth noting that these particular respondents are not designed to be representative of the general population. They live in Brazil, the UK, and the US, are between the ages of 15 and 59, are smartphone owners with basic cable and/or pay TV services (which could include streaming from the web) who watch at least 6 hours of TV content per week. At least half of the respondents were also required to own a tablet.
Apparently, including the elements found above would impact respondents’ opinions about a promoted brand or product, in that they claim they’d be:
- more aware of it (38%);
- more likely to talk about with others (38%);
- more likely to make a purchase (36%);
- more likely to visit the brand’s website (36%);
- more likely to feel positively about the brand (34%).
One would hope that if a brand would put in the effort, they’d achieve at least some of those benefits.
Here are some other interesting nuggets from the report (not necessarily related to advertising, but to storytelling experiences):
- 78% want the ability to “friend” a character digitally (such as by receiving Facebook updates or text messages) with the potential to sway the character’s decisions;
- 87% would like to be able to see events through the eyes of a particular character or to switch from one character’s viewpoint to another;
- 88% want stores to help them learn about and support causes; and
- 73% are interested in finding out about real-world products or services at relevant points in a story (“just click on that car for specs and pricing”).
Finally, the research suggests that the best new opportunities for second-screen experiences (when TV is the primary screen) include earning rewards, entering related contests, making purchases, and voting to decide outcomes.