Companies and agencies have been catching on: viewers hate advertisements. Though commercials have (for as long as anyone can remember) always come with the territory for most media, the internet was the exception until recently. Website such as Pandora and Youtube started off with low advertisement bombardment, but have adapted their styles to become more revealing of the traditional media (radio and tv) that preceded them. Yet in that glimpse before websites sold their souls to advertisers, viewers were able to capture a world of music and video streaming with few interruptions. Now we have to wait 15 seconds before we can watch our favorite Youtube videos, and the ads that abruptly interrupt my Pandora station of symphonic classical music have become too much of a distraction for me when I’m studying that I dropped the website entirely.
These interruptions don’t portray the advertisers’ clients in a positive light. Yes, their name is getting out there–but for the sake of brand identification, I don’t feel that this is the best method. Some agencies have produced work that agrees with my viewpoint that my time is more valuable than to wait to hear some advertisement for 15-30 seconds. Thus the shortened ad was born. Miller did 1 second ads in the Superbowl last year, and AT&T has been doing short ads before Youtube clips with the message: “We know how much your time means to you, which is why we’ve made this 15 second ad only 5.”
In my opinion, these are the innovators of the industry. I see the future trend in advertising being shortened, more personal, and considerate spots. Especially in the instance of internet surfing, the web is about you as the viewer. You chose to go to a certain site, you are being entertained, and you can easily switch to another site if you don’t like what’s going on. The medium is much more fragmented than TV, and thus I think we’ll see ads follow suit.