Molly Wood wrote an interesting piece over on Cnet today declaring a digital fatwa on the 30-second pre-roll, at least when used alongside short-form content. Wood believes ads could be as short as 5 seconds long, or at the very least be more along the lines of Cnet’s policy of 15 seconds.  The two main problems Wood identifies are: (a) the length of ads in relation to the content and the attempts to simply repurpose TV ads for online; and (b) inadequate frequency capping.

Every company wants to crack the nut on digital video, and everyone from publishers to advertisers want to figure out how to make money on it. Sure, people are watching more video, but it’s not a broadcast-caliber money-maker, which is why, for example, my parent company, CBS, is hesitant to dive too deeply into digital distribution. There may be ads, but there aren’t enough of them, they don’t make as much money as TV ads, and although digital video consumption is growing, it’s still not profitable enough to abandon broadcast. I’ve heard many a TV industry executive bemoan the fact that the money “just isn’t there yet.”

The solutions, say Wood, lie in shorter, more powerful creatives, better technology, and improved integration. Read the full article here.

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