In Memorium: The 30 Second TV Spot?

from the not-dead-yet dept

The Washington Post has an article discussing the supposed death of the 30-second TV commercial, noting that with so many other advertising options these days, combined with the rise of DVRs and commercial skipping, many companies (and TV networks) are looking at alternatives to the 30-second commercial. Of course, calling the 30-second spot dead is going too far. After all, many people still love good commercials. They watch the Super Bowl just for the commercials. They watch TV shows promoting the best commercials and they’re even willing to seek out good commercials (especially if they’re also available online). The point isn’t that the 30-second spot has lost its effectiveness. It’s just that now that it has competition, advertisers need to recognize that there is no captive audience any more — so if they want to get attention, they need to work for it. They can’t just expect people to sit back and accept whatever is thrown at them. That’s not a bad thing. In fact, it should mean that the 30-second spots that live on should be a lot more interesting an effective.

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Comments on “In Memorium: The 30 Second TV Spot?”

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R Gonzalez says:

30 second spot

The networks have already tried to stop commercial skipping and it backfired. One even went as far as to try and confuse DVRs by putting a still image for 30 secs.

The ads will always be there if only because people like me are living without cable and receive only Over Ther Air TV. All it really means is that the poorest(me) and the refusers(readers & occasional watchers) will be the only ones to see these commericials. Less eyes mean cheaper rates and possibly a wider range of commercials as more companies will be able to afford TV ads.

Anonymous Coward says:

Some companies are starting to take a unique approach to TV advertising, at least during the holiday season. Once in a while I have seen a segment of programming on TV that was completely sponsored by a single company. There were very few commercial breaks inserted, and they were basically advertising just the company sponsoring the event, no other misc. product placement. IMHO, that’s the way to go. At least during large programming segments like feature movies and stuff. Standard half-hour or one-hour time slots would be a bit more difficult to do that with.

TheDock22 says:


After all, many people still love good commercials. They watch the Super Bowl just for the commercials.

That’s a little extreme don’t you think? I do not know anyone who watches the Super Bowl only for the commercials. The commercials are just a benefit of watching the greatest sports game of the year.

Anyway, people will watch good commercials. I go to the Bug Light website all the time to watch their commercials (especially since some get banned from TV, another vote against the FCC).

I think advertisers need to step up their game, rather then complain that no one watches their tv spot.

Sanguine Dream says:

Re: Football?

No its not extreme. For last two years I’ve TiVo’d the Superbowl just to fastforward through the game and watch the commercials. Pro sport league have gotten way to arrogant (they act like they should get paid just becuase they exist) but thats another topic.

Ads have gotten so out of hand that I just record shows (even when I’m at home to watch) so I can later watch with the option of FF through ads. When ads get interseting again then maybe I’ll start watching them.

TheDock22 says:

Re: Re: Football?

Well I think that is dumb to watch the Superbowl just for the commercials. It is like going to movie you don’t want to watch just for the previews.

Why not just go to the websites that have all the Superbowl commercials instead of going through the hassle to TiVo and then skip through the game? You save time.

Sanguine Dream says:

Re: Re: Re: Football?

It’s fine if you think its dumb but don’t. No its not like going to a movie I don’t wanna see just for the previews. I’m staying at home (vs going out to the movie), I don’t pay any extra money (I already pay the satellite bill so the Superbowl is right there for the watching), and depending on when said movie will release the preview just might get played during a Superbowl ad.

Watching it on tv puts my tv to use if I’m not doing anything else. The tv has a much larger screen. I don’t have to deal with load times, site traffic, or the site going down.

Anonymous Coward says:

Heh, you also can have the beauty of commercial free tv. You own a computer? Buy a $20+ tunner card and just record shows. Home made DVR, without the fees. And if fewer eyes are watching the comercials, wouldnt it mean that the stations recieve less money, meaning lower budget, meaning lower budget TV shows, meaning fewer viewers, meaning lower comercial prices, (basicly spiralling down and out.)

Now if you listen to Mike up on the top there, and companies just make better ads, thyey iwll be fine, because people like watching entertaining comercials. Or at least are less likely to skip them if they are good. So really it is just a matter of it is a good time to be a creative mind in advertising.

Jay says:

“That’s a little extreme don’t you think? I do not know anyone who watches the Super Bowl only for the commercials. “

I live in a house qith 18 other people, we watched the superbowl this year solely for the commercials. It is better than the game, and frankly, I couldnt tell you who won, but i do know that the dino getting kicked at the end of the commercial and the guy then getting stepped on was a FedEx thing. Or several years back there was a commercial where the power was going out in the city and this power plant had light flashing and alarms sounding, and a guy goes into a room, and turns a beer bottle, the hampster starts running again, and all is well. The games dont mean anything uless your team is there, or a team you enjoy is there, or you have money on it, and even still all that matters in the money options is the quarter scores. Also why watch the game for the game, there is sports center. you can watch all the highlights for 36 hours afterwards, so wheres the draw? Oh, and prince was the halftime. so your right, it wasnt just the commercials but it was primarily them, and some wierd dude dancing with a monster deformed guitar.

Rsandoval says:

Re: wrong correction...

pls get illustrated, “Theme: subject: the subject matter of a conversation or discussion; “he didn’t want to discuss that subject”; “it was a very sensitive topic”; “his letters were always on the theme of love”
# a unifying idea that is a recurrent element in a literary or artistic work; “it was the usual `boy gets girl’ theme” .

I do accept that the right word is Memoriam, sorry.

welcome “Dork”

Ajax 4Hire (profile) says:

I'll say it again;

embedded commercials is the next logical step.
Movies do this all the time, Pepsi, Coke Ford, BMW all subsidize for placement in movies.

With TV re-runs, the advantage is multiplied.
Get “Reba” to drink a Coke;
Get “Home Depot” to sponsor make-over shows;
Get “Anheuser-Busch” to sponser a Sunday Race.

Commercial Skip technology will fail because it will not be able to distinguish content from commercial because it is the same.

Worry about spammers discovering this technique and using it as a normal delivery of content, news entertainment.

Its here, its now its the wave of the future.

Marc Cohen (user link) says:

This change is good

I think we have already seen the TV industry responding with new creative ad formats. Other industries don’t respond to change as well, eg the recorded music industry. The recorded music industry should seize the opportunity of shifting media habits and embrace advertising.

Check out the Ad-Supported Music Central blog:

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