Here’s What You Need to Know About Twitter’s New 6-Second Video Ad Bids
Twitter has rolled out a flexible new option for advertisers whose primary concern is in having their videos viewed in full, but who are also interested in developing short-form videos as part of their arsenal of assets. This new ad bidding option will allow brands to run video ads which are 15 seconds or less in duration, and the advertiser would only be charged for the ad if it is seen for at least 6 seconds, with 50% pixels in full view. This is seen as encouragement for those advertisers who are leaning toward a mobile-first strategy, and simply require some incentive to push them solidly into the mobile arena.
Why the new bidding option matters
This new ad bidding opportunity is seen as a direct response to YouTube’s 6-second bumper ads, but it goes one step further. Twitter’s version of the short-form advertising option also allows for the possibility of running creatives which have a longer duration. This should appeal to all those brands which have an interest in significant view rates and better metrics on completed views.
Another competitor, Facebook, has a similar advertising option named ThruPlay, which has a threshold of viewing a video for 15 seconds, with 100% of pixels in full view. Facebook claims that its offering is superior, because it engages viewers for longer, and it requires the full display of an ad to be in view, before advertisers are charged for their ads. Twitter has countered this claim with statistics that show six seconds is the optimal duration for any short-form video, if retention and recall are the objectives. In any case, it isn’t surprising that all the major social media platforms have developed similar advertising products, given the fact that research clearly supports the strategy of short-form advertising.
Some companies have already had access to the new ad bids, and have found them to be very beneficial for their brands. One such brand is Dell, which is one of the companies having early access to Twitter’s new bid option. According to CSB Marketing Director Alice Oliveira, using the new ad video option has increased the company’s view rate by a surprising 22%, when they coupled 6-second ads with some very compelling creatives.
Early research by EyeSee would seem to confirm the resounding success of the new ad option. One survey it has conducted showed that short-form videos with the sound off, and which delivered a very clear and positive branding message, provided much better recall among users than normal. Compared to more linear-formatted TV-style video ads, these 6-second ads were remarkably effective in instilling brand recall and product recollection among users.
Another beta tester for the new 6-second ad option is Digitas, which is a global agency having a keen interest in the results of early testing. What Digitas found was that some significant cost savings can be achieved by using Twitter’s new option, and that the video view rates were trending strongly upward. Cost per view measurements on Twitter compared to other platforms were very favorable, and that increases the desirability of making greater use of Twitter for marketing initiatives.
The one thing Digitas would have liked to measure, but could not include in its testing earlier this year, was how the 50% pixel in-view rate impacted brand metrics. At some point in the future, the agency will probably partner with Twitter to conduct testing in this area, so some clear insights can be gained on this important question. Once data on this research is made available, it can be compared to other platforms’ advertising options, which require 100% pixels in full view.
The big question
One of the bigger questions related to this new advertising option from Twitter is whether or not brands can get their advertising message across to users in a mere six seconds. While that may seem like way too little time to convey a clear message to anyone, research has shown that six seconds may actually be an ideal time frame for a video ad message. The reason for this is that it becomes much easier for consumers to recall and recollect any message which is uncluttered by a story line or any other facts in the video.
When a concise message is developed and conveyed to users in a very short span, it is generally remembered much better. Tests have borne out this fact on numerous occasions, so there seems little doubt about its veracity. The real question probably has more to do with whether or not a brand has the skill and creativity to develop a really clear and effective message, which can be related to users in a very short time frame.
The niche for 6-second video ads
Some type of offering like this was almost inevitable from Twitter, given the fact that video ad formats have been its fastest-growing segment of ad formats for the past several years. As recently as last year, the platform had announced that more than half of all its ad revenue was directly attributable to video ads. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise to find that Twitter is focusing more intensely on developing new options for video advertisers.
That means you can expect that additional opportunities will probably be made available to video advertisers in the coming months and years, since it would benefit both Twitter and all its business users. This new ad video bidding option has already been rolled out globally, and it is more than likely that a number of businesses both large and small will line up to take advantage.
It has been made available for in-stream video ads, in-stream video sponsorships, and Twitter’s Promoted Video feature. All of these will be able to work with videos which are less than 15 seconds in duration, and all will have the same potential of increasing view rates as well as completion rates. If your brand is interested in increasing its metrics in either of those areas, Twitter’s new 6-second video ad bid option might just provide the boost you’re looking for.