By Peter Henderson
Internet advertisers and marketing professionals have a message for
television networks: get ready to change the way you work.
As Internet advertising grabs a bigger share of marketing budgets and
ad agencies tailor spots to a new medium where attention spans can be
measured in split seconds, television networks will have to adjust,
executives told the Reuters Media and Advertising Summit this week.
"We believe the Web site will ultimately replace the 30-second
commercial as the central expression of the brand ... The TV
commercial over time will become more of a way to simply send people
to your Web site," said Brian McAndrews, chief executive of Internet
marketing company aQuantive Inc..
Television accounts for roughly two-thirds of major companies'
advertising budgets, and that could shrink to about one-half in three
years, according to David Verklin, chief executive of online media
buying company Carat Americas, a unit of Aegis Group Plc.
A main driver of that change will be online advertising, he said,
which should see its share of spending roughly double from about 8
percent now, as companies pay more attention to the Web's ability to
tailor messages to individual consumers and to track response.
Web video advertisements will be about 10 seconds long, and mobile
advertising on cell phones and other devices would be a similar
length, he projected.
Verklin, like a number of executives, predicted that television would
begin to look like the Internet, perhaps adding clickable Web sites in
place of commercials. The element of interaction could increase the
older medium's ability to reach smaller, self-selecting groups of
clients, he added.
"My vision of the future has more advertisers on TV than ever before,"
30 SECONDS IS TOO LONG
That could be a sea change for advertisers who have embraced the video
possibilities on the Web largely by running 30-second commercials made
Charlie Rutman, chief executive of Havas Advertising's media buyer,
MPG North America, said that failings in the standard commercial
itself were also driving change. "Is the 30-second commercial
considered as effective as it was five years ago? I don't think it
is. That's why people have an appetite to look elsewhere," he said.
Greg Coleman, new global advertising sales chief at Yahoo Inc., agreed
that the Web needs promos shorter than 30 seconds, which then might
spill back into television.
"Will the networks allow for a five-second blast or a 10-second spot?
It's going to be interesting to see how traditional media will bend
and work with the new world," he said. "I think they are going to have
to rethink how ads are placed throughout programming."
Widely agreed upon by marketing executives interviewed by Reuters is
that ad creativity needs a shot in the arm, especially with the advent
of new media formats.
"I think the majority of ads are just dull and mind-numbing," said
David Droga, outgoing chief creative officer of the Publicis
advertising network. "There is a parallel world out there which is
'ad-land.' I don't know anybody who lives in that world."
Droga, who is starting his own company, DrogaFive, with backing from
Publicis, said ads need to be more creative and better suited to
brands they represent.
"Anyone can be edgy, but if it is not in sync with the brand, it is
just wasted money," he said.
Copyright 2005 Reuters Limited.
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