Why a trillion TV ads matter

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57% say TV adverts have most impact of any advertising format


23 August 2012

Television viewers are forecast to watch nearly a trillion ads in 2012*, according to a report to be published by Deloitte** on behalf of the Media Guardian Edinburgh International Television Festival, (23-25 August 2012). The average viewer watched 49 adverts per day in the first quarter of this year, a figure that does not include fast-forwarded commercials, adverts watched by under four year olds, or TV video-on-demand adverts watched on computers or mobile devices.

TV advertising made the greatest impact in 2012 for the fourth year in a row, with 57% of viewers rating it highest, 58% in 2011, 56% in 2010, and 64% in 2009.  In 2012 TV adverts are way ahead of newspaper adverts at 15% and magazine adverts at 13%.

TV adverts continue to be regarded as having made more of an impression on viewers relative to online display media. Only 1% rated banner adverts within smartphone apps as having most impact, compared to 3% picking banner adverts on websites, a fall from 8% in 2009. Only 4% chose adverts or sponsored links in internet search engines and 3% selected video adverts on websites, the same as 2010 and 2011.

Paul Lee, director of technology, media and telecommunications research at Deloitte, said: “The UK’s willingness to consume adverts in such quantities and advertisers’ continued eagerness to invest billions in TV advertising perplexes many commentators. Some regard the traditional TV advertising model, based on the 30-second spot, as fundamentally broken.

“Deloitte’s view, based on our research, is that the traditional TV advertising model, is neither broken nor breaking. It has, for the fourth year running, maintained its ranking as the advertising medium with the greatest impact and by a clear margin. Advertising is multi-faceted and every campaign will have a different objective. At present there is no equivalent for companies to promote a new brand, product or service quickly and reach consumers across the UK.”

TV adverts’ effect on viewers
Deloitte/GfK’s research shows TV adverts generate conversation and action. Nearly 20% (17%) said they had bought the product advertised after watching it on television, 16% talked about the advert with people watching the programme with them and 16% talked about the advert with friends, colleagues or family after the programme or the next day***.

PVRs and advertising
The arrival of personal video recorders (PVRs) has had an effect on advertising. PVR owners (80%) claim to watch recorded programmes so as to allow them to skip through the adverts. However, over one quarter (27%) of 16 – 24 year olds always or frequently stop fast-forwarding when they see an advert or trailer that interests them when watching pre-recorded TV via their PVR.

The future for advertising
Deloitte/GfK’s research hints at a possible drop in appreciation for TV advertising. Younger age groups (aged 19-24) always rank TV ads highest for impact. In 2010, 63% of respondents in this age group rated TV advertising as having the highest impact; in 2011 it climbed to 69%. This year it fell to 56 per cent.

Paul Lee adds: “The likeability of TV ads may dip over the next 12 months, partly due to the state of the economy. TV advertising’s ability to entertain is a function of marketing executives’ ability to sign-off budgets. A big budget does not guarantee the popular appeal of an advertising campaign, but it can help secure the best directors, writers and acting talent as well as the most impressive visual effects and sets. In challenging economic times, companies may focus more on the tactical, manifested by a skew to promotions-based adverts and they are not as palatable in large doses.”

* The data for 2012 is for Q1 only.[i] Source: BARB, 2012

** The data was compiled by GfK.
*** 2005 respondents answering the second module.

Courtesy of Deloitte – http://goo.gl/HIfPc