"TV advertising made the greatest impact in 2012 for the fourth year in a row," says a new study from Deloitte, one of the major professional services audit firms. However, it should be noted that a TV industry group commissioned the study. Not that that influences the results, but that's who is associated with these findings.
Some of what they found makes sense. The research indicated that "TV adverts generate conversation and action. Nearly 20 percent said they had bought the product advertised after watching it on television, [and] 16 percent talked about the advert with people watching the program."
I guess it depends on how you define "conversation," because unless you are having computer time with your wife, how likely are you to talk to someone about something you're seeing in that moment online? Maybe with a close friend, like, a Gchat buddy or something, and even then, it's more likely to be a discussion that dissipates much faster than what would transpire around the sectional couch in front of the boob tube.
What's also interesting is that this study also revealed that not as many people fast-forward through commercials as one might think. I'm talking, of course, about when watching on DVRs. Anyway, although 80 percent of those grilled said they signed up for DVR services said it was to skip commercials, 27 percent of 16- to 24-year-olds said they "always or frequently stop fast-forwarding when they see an advert that interests them when watching pre-recorded TV."
Not that it's necessarily cheaper than advertising online, but it's been speculated that part of the reason why Internet ads aren't as effective is because they aren't tailored to the medium. As digital marketing expert Mitch Joel blogged:
There is still a vast majority of brands that are either copying their traditional advertising and pasting it into digital media or the adaptation is simply not performing within the new media channel. The macro issue still remains: is it at all possible that these new, digital media channels simply don’t compliment the type of advertising we have traditionally seen in the more traditional media channels? … Ultimately, if it turns out that new media is not the best fit for advertising (as we have seen to date), this begs the question: now what?
Well, I guess we can go back to just barking on street corners. But really, I don't think this is a case of whether advertising on the Internet effective at all – it's a case of people needing to be less lazy and work for the platform they're trying to get noticed on. Brands will continue to evolve or die out in their efforts there. I mean, do you remember banner ads? Things change, and those who want to be there will adapt.
David Wolinsky is a freelance writer and a lifelong Chicagoan. In addition to currently serving as an interviewer-writer for Adult Swim, he's also a comedy-writing instructor for Second City. He was the Chicago city editor for The Onion A.V. Club where he provided in-depth daily coverage of this city's bustling arts/entertainment scene for half a decade. When not playing video games for work he's thinking of dashing out to Chicago Diner, Pizano's, or Yummy Yummy. His first career aspirations were to be a game-show host.