As expressive and creative as advertisers and marketers want to be, they more often than not have to adhere to certain restrictions. Sometimes those restrictions may be imposed on them by a client, it may even be their intended audience but there is one universal restriction amongst modern day creatives. Time. We are fighting a constant battle to do more, with less. We have smaller spaces to make an impact and less time to do it in. Developments in technology and social media mean our audiences expect things to happen instantly and if they don’t get what they want in a matter of seconds, they don’t have a problem in moving on and forgetting about you.
Granted, we used to have word counts to stick to or advertising spaces to work within but this notion of restricting advertising messages is beginning to dominate the world of advertising. Twitter is an obvious example with its 140-character limit, Snapchat gives users a measly ten seconds to record a video, whilst Instagram has given a half-hearted attempt to buck the trend by increasing its video length limit from 15 seconds to one minute. In a society that is being consumed by social media, it is no wonder that in order to achieve the engagement advertisers so desperately crave, we have to be more concise than ever.
You might ask, is there proof that shortening a campaign is better for business? Well, in December last year, Spotify increased subscription intent by 30% when it worked with Snapchat’s ‘Discover’ feature to promote its top artists of the year. With a series of ‘short and sweet’ videos, Spotify was able to show its audience what can be expected when using their services, keeping them both entertained and engaged through the process.
We have certainly seen a shift from conventional forms of advertising and marketing in recent years. Things like Sky+ has afforded consumers the ability to fast-forward or skip TV adverts, whilst the rise of online publications mean print adverts have a smaller audience to engage with. Going online with your campaigns is most definitely the way to go, the only problem is that the online world is an incredibly crowded place. Producing smaller campaigns might mean less money is spent, but they are most likely to take more time to create. If it is what’s needed to engage with your target audience then of course, shorter is better for business but it does represent a bigger challenge for agencies and their creatives.