To Skip or Not To Skip

Advertisements. So according to the ever-so-trustworthy, advertisements can be defined as:

Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 3.56.28 pm

But in my dictionary, I think of advertisements to be a ” notice of a product portrayed in an interesting or boring way”.  But in all honesty, I am both a lover and a hater of ads. If I loved the ad, I would watch the entire thing, even if it means wasting an entire 5 minutes of my life . But if I didn’t, I would simply switch the channel or stare into blank space. But my all time favourite thing to do, is to …

skip ad image

I bet all of you would be very familiar with these 2 words. I practically see them all day, everyday (Yes, sadly, I’m on YouTube 24/7). So the thing with ads on YouTube is that before you can watch a video, you are forced to watch an ad. However, thanks to the Internet Gods, we  finally have a choice as consumers. In December 2010, YouTube had introduced TrueView in which people could choose to skip the ads. (but then again, there are also ad blocks).This means a plus on our part if we didn’t want to watch it but a minus on the advertisers.

With that, advertisers have the gruelling task of making the first 5 seconds of the ad as enticing as they possibly can be. Once those 5 seconds are up, we either skip it or stay and watch. If we chose stay and watch, I guess it would be safe to say the ad succeeded in catching our attention. Now personally, I do love that skip button, but in an interview in 2011, YouTube revealed that only about 30% of the ads are actually skipped. This means that 70% of the time, people actually watch the entire ad (shocking?! I know).

So to put it simply, it is  the ‘Skip Ad’ button that got me thinking about how a short amount of time (5 seconds in this case) can really make a difference on how a customer perceives your brand. You can spend a whole minute, a month or a year trying to advertise your product to your customer but it is essentially in the first few seconds that a customer forms an impression. With that, I leave you with an ad by Budweiser that I actually did not skip and a poll for you to vote on whether you skip or watch ads.

P.S I do admit that I was drawn into watching this ad by the first second because of  the words “Puppy Adoption” and that I am sucker for  dogs.


One thought on “To Skip or Not To Skip”

  1. Interesting stuff Lesley, as a future marketer it is slightly concerning to be faced with the reality that an ad which has taken months to produced is viewed and dismissed by a consumer within several seconds!

    Do you believe that the stats from YouTube from 2011 regarding the skip rate are still roughly correct?


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