The death of the 30-second television commercial -- and television as a marketing medium -- has been greatly exaggerated.
According to a new survey from the Association of National Advertisers and Forrester Research, only 19% of respondents believe the 30-second television commercial will be dead in 10 years (down from 28% in a similar survey a year ago). At the same time, the 100 national advertisers surveyed expected their TV ad budgets to remain flat this year.
"It's still the best away to reach a mass audience," Bill Duggan, an EVP at the ANA, tells Marketing Daily. "The survey says there have been reductions to [TV] allocations, but there are still some opportunities. And some threats."
The biggest threat, say these survey respondents, is efficacy. According to the survey, 62% of respondents think TV advertising has become less effective over the past two years, with a majority of them citing clutter as the biggest challenge. Some 69% of advertisers said they would like fewer commercials per pod. They also want better audience measurement beyond simply reach and frequency. Eighty-two percent of the respondents said they were interested in individual commercial ratings, with 15% saying they were "neutral" on the issue.
There was also a high level of interest in branded entertainment and interactive TV. Four-fifths of the respondents said branded entertainment will play a bigger role in the future, and 38% plan to spend more on branded entertainment as an alternative to the 30-second commercial. Three-quarters of the respondents believe interactive TV will help generate leads, but only 28% plan to spend more on it in 2010.
Although they want better accountability, the advertisers aren't yet ready to pay more for it. While 78% of the respondents said they would be interested in the ability to target more precisely, only 59% said they would pay a premium for it. That may abate as advertisers begin to understand addressable advertising's value, Duggan says. "The interactive sellers have to do a better job selling the benefits of targeted advertising," he says.