Don’t Blink. Or You Might Miss Tomorrow’s Ads.

We live in an increasingly advanced technological age.

Seemingly each and every day, new becomes newer. Cool becomes cooler.

Fast becomes faster.

And as technology continues to expand in America…attention spans seem to simultaneously contract.

Are you still reading this?

If so, good.

At Amplitude, we like to stay abreast of the latest and greatest trends in not just technology

But in advertising as well.

And we’ve recently touched on the topic of advertisers’ and marketers’ need to not only say and show something memorable and powerful – but to do so right away. As in, right this instant.


Right this Instagram.

With the rise of fast-moving, quick-hit, image-oriented platforms like Instagram, Vine and Vimeo, the time-honored and even iconic 60-second and 30-second ads may become a thing of The Distant Past sometime in The Near Future.

But will things change oh-so drastically that we’ll actually see a rise in…

The 3-second ad?

Some are saying that the answer here is a resounding “yes.”

In a post on MediaPost’s MobileInsider blog, author Steve Smith boldly declared, “The Age Of The 3-Second Ad Is Upon Us.”

In his post, Smith quoted “creative and technology agency” MRY Chief Strategy Officer Ian Chee‘s confident statement that, “There will be three-second ad units some day.”

According to Smith, Chee made this statement at MediaPost’s Mobile Insider Summit in late January, during a day spent addressing programming on mobile video. Chee said that as advertising creatives continue to move further away from the 30- and 15-second ads that still dominate desktop computers and transition more and more to mobile ad executions, they’ll develop newer and faster ways to “tell stories in snapshots.”

Chee also spoke of the different “cultures” that exist on multiple mobile platforms.

“You have to adapt to the culture of the medium and not look at it as one thing,” said Chee. “You will be ridiculed because Vine Viewers won’t see these (videos) in the same way Instagram users will see it.”
Per Smith’s report, an interesting point was also made about advertising creatives often overlooking the importance, impact and implications of screen size.

“Creative teams work on ginormous screens, and it looks gorgeous,” said Adobe Digital Index Principal Analyst Tamara Gaffney.

During a panel on Instagram and Vine in particular, there was “further (exploration of) what the micro-video world of the future looks like.” NowThisNews Editor In Chief Ed O’Keefe cited experience “re-engineering” longer video news stories, and then distributing them through social mobile video channels like Vine, Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat, saying that at this point, “things really took off” when it came to engagement and recognition.

According to O’Keefe, NowThisNews is even working with the ever-innovative Facebook to “share the learnings about nano-video formats that comes from 10,000 clips they have made in the last few years.”

Smith also cites a series of “superb Vine videos from juice brand Bolthouse Farms.” These Vine videos are “6-second juice drink recipes” – and the Instagram program has users snap any bottle of Bolthouse product to get back a coupon.

Then again, 6 seconds is not 3 seconds. In fact, it’s already twice as long as 3 seconds. One has to wonder…can a 3-second ad really work? Are Americans’ attention spans that short yet – or will they be, soon?

And can a brand actually put across an effective and memorable message…in a mere 3 seconds? Personally, we’re not so sure. But we could see it working. If done intelligently. And skillfully. By skilled, seasoned professionals.

What do YOU think about the idea of 3-second ads? Are they viable? Will we see them become anything like standard…anytime soon?

Let us know in the comments section below this blog post. We’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic!

Related Posts