Monday, June 30, 2008

GSTV shows that shorter is better for ads at the pump

MediaWeek and MediaBuyerPlanner have both reported that Gas Station TV released a study that indicates (among other things) that shorter, 15-second ads have been performing better than their 30-second counterparts on the pump-top medium. Specifically:
Gas Station TV is hitting the road with a new study to encourage
advertisers to switch from 30-second spots, a standard TV unit, to
shorter lengths. Conducted by Nielsen for GSTV, the study’s
results, to be released today, June 30, showed ad recall for
15-second ads, and even 10-second spots, were more effective.

For example, a 15-second ad for Werther’s candy was 7 percent more
effective than its 30-second counterpart, according to the
study—return on investment for the 15-second ad was 108 percent
greater. A 10-second ad for Kellogg’s Pop Tarts had 2 percent
higher recall and generated 156 percent greater ROI.

Advertising at the gas pump has taken off, but advertisers tend to
place standard TV ads on the new platform. So far, about half of
GSTV’s ads were :30s, not much shorter than the 30-45 seconds of
content running next to them.

While we've advocated using shorter spots on digital signage networks for a long time now, if there was one place where the longer-format spots might have worked, I would have guessed gas pumps. After all, the audience is basically as captive as they're going to get, so why not spend the extra seconds making sure you're really getting your message across? For one reason or another (and I could speculate for a while), apparently it doesn't work that way, and the shorter-is-better rule of digital signage content carries through yet again.


Anonymous said...

I'll postulate that the audience is not as captive as we might suspect, given that their attention is split between the GSTV screen and (especially with today's gas prices) the dollar counter!

Anonymous said...

No kidding. I also recently read that fewer people are going into the attached convenience stores because they feel like they have a lot less spending money after seeing what they just paid for gas (and in truth they probably do). However, one wonders whether this makes the advertising even more valuable, since now the revenues from concessions are even more necessary, so anything that drives traffic into the store should be good.