In the months leading up to the annual Super Bowl game, companies spend millions of dollars creating TV ads specifically for the event. The content of these commercials is jealously guarded, and is only revealed on the big day. However, considering all of the money and work that go into these 30-second spots, it raises the question: do these TV ads really have an impact on consumers?
A survey conducted by the Radio Advertising Bureau in the U.S. suggests that most viewers actually have substantial difficulty recalling the ads; especially what brand or product the spots were about.
The survey was completed by 750 people (ranging in age from 18 to 54) who watched the last Super Bowl on February 3, 2013. Ten different advertisements were described and participants were asked the following three questions:
- “While you were watching the Super Bowl on Sunday, do you remember seeing the TV ad where…?”
- “What type of product or service was being advertised in the TV ad?”
- “What was the actual brand name of the product advertised in the TV ad?”
The results of the study showed that for half of the ads, participants were only able to recall the brand less than 10% of the time. The average brand recall rate was only 13.8%. Furthermore, the study revealed that these advertisements had very little effect on brand perception. Only 7 % of participants later looked online for information relating to the advertised brand or product. It seems as though billions of dollars were spent for very little impact.
The Radio Advertising Bureau notes that the visual aspect of TV advertising (both motion and pictures) can actually detract from a message rather than enhance it as often thought. Radio spots, on the other hand, are not hindered by this stimulation and can therefore convey a message more directly and effectively.
At Eagle-Com, we do not think that this means TV advertising is a waste of time or money. However, our perspective is that different types of advertising are effective in different situations. When choosing what form of media to use, you must think about the audience, timing, and content of your message and then choose your medium accordingly. Just as each person is suited for a different job or environment, different advertisements are suited for different forms of media at different times of the day or year. There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ type of media.
Stop and get some perspective to help you pick the right medium for your message!
(Thank you Jessica, Intern Extraordinaire, for researching and preparing today’s EP blog!)