A study commissioned by YuMe has found that while the size of a video screen did deliver higher levels of excitement about video advertising, other variables such as ad clutter (i.e. higher ad loads), creative content, and context had a much stronger influence on ad recall by viewers. The research was carried out in conjunction with IPG Media Labs and measured attention using eye-tracking technology and emotional response using bio-feedback tools.
Previous studies (such as the Tremor Video research VAN reported on earlier in the year) have found that larger screens lead to higher completion rates and engagement, but YuMe’s study has found that screen size did not play a significant role in ad effectiveness. Instead, three other controllable variables, which YuMe are calling the “Three C’s,” proved to be more important:
1. Clutter – TV proved effective at garnering attention and eliciting emotion, but fell short on ad breakthrough, due to clutter. Ad clutter appears to undermine the ad effectiveness of linear TV (29 percent successful unaided recall), compared to successful unaided recall with less ad time for connected TV (39 percent), mobile (35 percent) and PC (40 percent).
2. Creative – Ad effectiveness varied greatly by the creativity of the ad.
3. Context – The most engaging content attracted the most attention; and “lean-back”
In an interview with VAN, Travis Hockersmith, Senior Director, Client Strategy at YuMe, said the results were in some respects unexpected. “I think the punchline of this study is that we anticipated that attention and excitement would be good drivers of recall, but what we found they had a surprisingly low impact and weren’t particularly useful as predictive indicators of recall. The things that were driving recall were things like the ad load, the creative quality and the environment the people were watching the ads in,” said Hockersmith.
“We went into the study thinking that, for example, a particular demographic might respond best to mobile or connected TV, but we didn’t see much of that. We saw that the three C’s of clutter, creative and context were the variables that were moving the needle in terms of performance,” he added.
Environments with less distraction, such as at home in bed, enhance viewer attentiveness to ads. YuMe’s research found that the couch is now the optimal multi-screen environment, while the bed represents the ultimate single-screen environment.