First there was print. Then there was television. Now its digital. Advertisements have come a long way since their inception into the public sphere, and taken on many different creative and cultural trends. Thanks to a recent study by Nielsen, we are seeing this tangible shift away from televised ads to online video ads on the internet in dramatic ways.
To reach the everyday consumer, virtually every organization or corporation we can shake a fist at spends huge chunks of their marketing budgets on online advertising. What has changed about the manner of the advertising campaigns undertaken by large brands is the kind of interaction and content being provided to users. Being the second largest search engine on the web right now, we'll use YouTube as a good measuring stick for brand-user engagement. Whether it be a fictional storyline about a man who wakes up in the body of a different person everyday, or inspiring an honest dialogue about female beauty, brands are reaching audiences by incorporating more personalized content that they actually connect with, instead of an unabashedly direct sales pitch.
Because of this new approach, retention rates are higher, brands are retained at a greater rate, and general likeability of ads has risen in these short five years. In the past, when ads were featured on television, their popularity was restricted to prime time hours, namely when professionals would return home from work to plop on the couch to watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The benefits of online video advertisements is that they are viewed at all hours of the day, by audiences of all nationality and age.
While connecting with audiences has been the crusade of the advertising world since it began, companies are now doing so by reaching out to audiences within a social media world that they actively contribute to and engage in daily. It has opened us endless possibilities for the Mad Men (and Women) of today's advertising world to explore and utilize in new and creative ways.