With the explosion of alternative viewing platforms, you read it everywhere: TV advertising is dead! Really? Tell that to the brands that spent $5 million for their 30-second spots during the Super Bowl this year.
Since the first advert aired on British television in 1955 (Gibbs SR toothpaste), television advertising has been the most prestigious method for brands to connect with their customers. It’s immersive, measurable and shows no sign of stopping. What has changed is where it sits within a marketing campaign.
With advances in technology, and the rise of ‘internet television’ and over-the-top devices (OTT), trends and viewing habits are definitely not what they were in 1955. However, TV advertising is still alive and kicking. What should brands and agencies be considering when committing to the crème de la crème of advertising platforms?
With over 20 years of programme making behind us, we know that, despite technological advances, the marketing of products lies within the storytelling. Just look at Netflix. They have an amazing distribution platform, but they’ve realised that the way forward is to focus on the quality of the content by becoming producers themselves!
A 2013 study by UK TV industry research body Thinkbox showed that adverts that generated some kind of emotion were almost twice as effective as those that were purely factual. So whether it’s nappies or dog food – you need to stand out! You have to work hard to grab every viewer’s attention, fill them with trust AND get your message heard.
Be brave and have confidence in the simplicity of a good creative. It’s as much about what you leave out as much as what you put in.
Part of TV’s power of promotion lies in its ability to generate mass awareness in a very short space of time, so it’s perfect for brand-building tactics. TV is less about a ‘here and now’ DRTV approach but about a key brand tactic within a much broader marketing strategy. And all delivered across an even bigger, badder digital world than ever before.
So if it’s not supported by tweets, landing pages, making-ofs, games and plenty of out-of-home advertising – then your ad could get lost in the wall of sound created by other brands. Other brands who are shouting louder, working harder and hitting more people with their message more often than you!
When you tell your agency that you simply want a TV ad, if you really want to see success then you’d better be prepared to talk about a much broader digital piece full of plenty of other content that might not seem at first relevant – but trust us… it is!
You need to focus on the specific use that your TV ad is going to have. After all, once you’ve bought your media time you want to see results! But also think about what the audience will be doing while watching it. Multi-screening is almost as abundant as Top Gear repeats on Dave, so take the opportunity to feed your viewers with ways to get more info, more interaction, to have a voice or share an idea. If it doesn’t have a real time call to action (or ‘reaction’) then they’ll always be a passive audience.
Our advice is not to get too immersed in the small screen. There are even smaller screens that you’d benefit from considering as well. Think about how your ad will play out on mobile platforms, YouTube, your blog or your website. If you’re moving into the world of online advertising then you don’t want to have to be reversioning at the last minute!
Lastly, you can spend as much as you want on any area of getting an advert to the screen – talent, media, special effects, celebrity endorsements and locations – but you need to get the ad that you pay for. The higher the budget, in theory, the better the execution of the idea. If you don’t have a huge budget though, then your goal should be to keep it simple – but to do it well! Don’t land on an incredible idea that involves dancing newts and then end up cutting corners just to bring it in on budget. Get the right idea for your brand and for your wallet before you go anywhere.
Our team are full of creative bods bursting at the seams with ideas. We’ll walk you through the whole production process – from concept to broadcast delivery. Plus, as a creative agency with no London overhead prices, we can produce your TV advertising at an affordable cost.