Posted January 22, 2008 4:47 pm by with 7 comments

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Shocker—people don’t want to see ads. As marketers, we hear people complain all the time about advertising. It comes as no surprise that BurstMedia’s recent survey found that people don’t like ads—but it’s probably something we should think about.

First, the good news: The survey of 2600 online adults focused specifically on online video and advertising in online video. As we all know, the medium is pretty darn popular—72.1% of respondents viewed video online at least monthly.

As we all know, the primary audience for online video is young, adult males: 33.7% of males aged 18 to 24 viewed online video at least once a day (compared to 17.8% of females in the same age range and 25.4% of males over 25). Even seniors are getting into online video, with 58.6% of respondents aged 65 and over watching.

Most respondents viewed news clips online, but entertainment clips (including music videos, TV shows, movies and trailers) were more popular with respondents 18-34.

Also classed as “good news”: video ads have fairly good recall, with 53.6% of respondents remembering viewing an ad in their online video.

Now the not-so-good news: ads in online videos turn viewers off. Big time.

78.4% of respondents say in-stream advertisements in online video are intrusive – and one-half (50.4%) say advertisements in video content disrupts their web surfing experience.

Slightly more women than men say that ads disrupt web surfing.

Also not good: 50.7% actually stop watching online video when they encounter an ad. Worse yet, 15.3% stop watching and leave the site when they encounter an ad in video.

However, the most ad-tolerant group was people aged 18 to 24. 56.7% of these respondents stayed and watched videos despite pre-, during- or post-roll ads. talked to Burst CMO David Cooperstein for some strategic solutions to these challenges:

For starters, marketers should try shorter spots – go to 5-10 seconds, rather than 15-30 seconds. Secondly, try to advertise on videos that relate in some way to the content. Finally, ad overlays, as YouTube and others have found recently, seem to offer the most promise, as viewers still get to watch their video uninterrupted and advertisers still get to reach their audience.

Although the report doesn’t specify, Cooperstein’s comments imply that the in-stream ads they asked about were not meant to include overlay ads like YouTube’s.

  • Mashable just posted that Online Video ads convert?

  • Jordan McCollum

    That conclusion comes from another study conducted by the Online Publishers Association last April. Pete concludes that if both studies are correct, 53.6% of video watchers recall seeing an ad, and 45% of those take some action after watching an ad, then 24% of online video watchers take some action on ads. The same OPA study the 45% stat comes from also found 80% recall on ads (as opposed to 53.6% here).

    Meanwhile, 49.7% of this study said ads in their videos make them less likely to watch video in the future. And while young viewers are the least opposed to seeing ads, they also have lower recall rates.

    Thanks for pointing that out!

  • Thanks for the stats. I agree with David and think that TV would also do well if they adopted shorter commercials. People are getting more and more impatient and I think they need shorter commercials. I definitely stop commercials whenever possible and leave websites that make commercials hard to stop. I do watch commercials if I’m forced to before a video but hate every second of it.

    Benadryl comes to mind when I think of forced Internet commercials and they should come to mind when I need allergy medicine.

    Shorten these forced commercials up and you’ll have a happy surfer.

  • great to see that studies are looking at ads in video content.

    not sure if you noticed but nytimes USE TO show ads before the news-clips would start (homepage). i *hated* it but it’s gone so that’s great.

    i think you had a good opp to mention the use of ads during video content delivered from studios (such as ABC, NBC, etc). the worst of the worst? by _FAR_ ABC wins that prize, requiring that you NOT ONLY have an ad play every 6 min at a significantly higher volume than the actual show being streamed but you have to click on the screen to continue to the desired content. (requiring me to get up and go click on the screen).

    sheesh, you’d think the people making decisions like THAT have never used a computer let alone streamed content to it.

    the important thing to keep in mind–and it’s the reason advertising isn’t going anywhere–is that the only people really excited about ads aren’t the consumers but the “marketing geniuses” pushing their pitches and the executives buying into it. ads don’t work on anyone but the less-educated. (trendspotters had a post w/ a research study illustrating this point)

    i’d much rather ad-budgets get slashed and companies pay out bigger dividends from the $$ saved.

    meh, just my 2 cents.

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  • Online Marketing are taking a new turn these days and i am not stunned to see that Online Videos are not much favored by adults,especially the ones which are bad. No matter who ever is posting ,if the content is good then i am sure you could gain huge popularity.