Tag Archives: tv ad

What is stopping brands from producing shorter pre-roll lengths?

For me the conversation about pre-roll lengths started in September 2007, when I joined Telegraph Media Group to launch Telegraph TV. Previously I had worked at a TV production company, and it was the norm for advertisers to run 30’ creative on the giant Blink TV screens that we managed at music gigs and festivals across the world.

In the digital space though, shorter lengths are important. As well as working with video as a medium I also shoot and edit it, and while I am no Spielberg I am capable enough to know that making a 10 second version of a 30 second advert is not rocket science.

I also know that the view through rate of 10 second adverts compares very favourably when compared with 30 second creative, and I know that video advertising investment is growing significantly, so why are so many brands relying on their 30 second TV spot to do a job online?

The mind-set of a consumer online is very different from that of somebody watching TV or Cinema. The lean-forward, active, fact-finding state of mind displayed in somebody online can be a very powerful proposition for brands, but I think in order to maximise that opportunity advertising has to be tailored to the environment.

I also believe that there is an unscientific, yet direct correlation between the size of the screen and the acceptable length of video advertising. Sat in a dark cinema, with no distractions and no chance of you getting up to make the tea or to put the washing on (my wife would tell you there is no chance of me doing this at home either) then a 90 second advert is likely to be acceptable. As the screen gets smaller the attention span decreases with it as the possible distractions increase. So in order to still engage these people, the creative length has to reduce as well. Maybe to a 30 on TV for example. Online you are one twitch of your finger away from leaving an advert if it is deemed too long, so once again the length of the pre-roll should reduce. The IAB Video Council recommendation is 15 seconds for online video pre-roll advertising; I would go one step further and recommend a 10 second creative length online. On mobile I think it should be shorter still, but that is another conversation.

If the creative agency are briefed at the very start that the creative needs to be adaptable to online, then there should be no reason why a shortened version of the TV/ Cinema advert could not be planned and created. At the moment, too many consumers are watching a smaller proportion of a longer message, and surely that is worse than them watching all of a shorter message?


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John Lewis – the best TV ad for ages?


I was waiting for the mighty reds to kick off against Atletico Madrid tonight, full of trepidation and chest pain (another story) and this came onto my Sony Bravia:

If you agree with me that video enables you to create emotion, personality and to tell a story, then this advert should be held up to all as the perfect specimen. I actually had goosebumps … from a TV ad!!!!

Beautifully shot, wonderfully scripted, and the only down side I can find is that it could never work online … it’s way too long for a pre-roll.

That said, if I had to watch that advert on TV another 100 times, I doubt I would get bored of it.

Beautiful videography. All that said, the strap line doesn’t seem to fit with the story.

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Make your own Doritoes TV advert!

I was happily watching stunning HD on Vimeo.com and I was served an MPU ad from Doritos.co.uk. In a twist from the norm, the ad was inviting me to make an advert for Doritoes, which I would imagine as a campaign did very well on Vimeo.com

I looked into it, I’ll be honest, but my videography skills are still in their infancy and so I gave it a miss.

I love the idea though. A great way to get wannabe film directors and camera guys involved, which will in turn engage with their followers, friends and family on social media sites and sites such as Vimeo and YouTube.

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Cadbury’s Creme Egg TV advert

I’ve just seen the new Cadbury’s Creme Egg Premiere advert on the Television.

Not sure what it was attempting to convey, but it’s interesting all the same.

I imagine it will become one of the adverts that my five year old daughter will remember, because it’s bizarre – just like she remembers the Evian roller-skating babies. Trouble is with the Evian advert, she has no idea what it is actually advertising.

At the moment the Creme Eggs exploded in the new Cadbury’s advert my wife said “Ewww! Are you supposed to fancy chocolate after that?” I know what she means, it’s weird.

That said, it’s entertaining and thus keeps your attention (or at least it did the first time) and it continues the long-standing marketing push to align Cadbury’s Creme Eggs with Easter, so I guess it ticks the boxes.

What are your thoughts on it?

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