Borrowing a page from the book of the now-defunct Vine app, the bigwigs of the tech world, namely Facebook and Google have all voted in favour of shorter, snappier ads. This move has left marketers scrambling to fit their brand stories into a six-second time frame, a tight squeeze compared to the 15-second or 30-second traditional limit.
A handful of advertisers were quick to react and took to the challenge of creating smart and compelling 6-second stories that proved to be far more effective in boosting ad recall and consumer engagement than their long-form cousins. However, a majority of brands still rely on traditional storytelling and as such are struggling to make the shift.
If you want to unlock the six-second opportunity, here are six crucial tips to help you conjure that perfect 6-second ad:
1. Tap into the power of one
Distil your brand story into a single word, phrase, sentence or image which best conveys the core message to your target audience. As compared to long-form ads, short-form videos do away with the need to dive into intricate storylines and multiple characters. The single word, sentence or image is all you have to rely on to hook consumers in. Once you have your weapon of choice, work backwards to create an alluring narrative which leaves viewers intrigued and wanting to discover more.
2. Use emotion
To deliver stronger impact, you must make your audience feel something. Humour is usually most effective in getting people to develop strong feelings for a product or brand, so be sure to make your short-form ad funny. For maximum effect, use a combination of striking visuals, and relatable humour to reel in people
3. Leverage multiple platforms
If your target audience consists of teens/young millennials, deploying your 0:06 bumper ad across multiple social media channels such as Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook would be hugely beneficial to getting your story out there. Younger audiences prefer short, snackable content and will hardly think twice before scrolling past your video ad if it is too long. Posting the same short form across multiple channels reinforces consistency and memorability.
4. Create a bigger picture
Instead of using a long-form video to pack in characters, storylines and brand information, refrain from overwhelming your consumers by using several 0.06 videos to build an overarching picture. Instead, think of each bumper ad as a mini-episode, a clue which assists in leading to a dramatic reveal. By breaking up your large ad into several small pieces, you give your audience something to anticipate, which will keep them invested in knowing the full story.
5. Don’t rely on sound
Soundless videos are on the rise, as more people gravitate towards hand-held devices such as mobile and tablet. Make sure that the story and graphics of your mini ad are the real stars of your video, not the background music. Pop in subtitles or in-video text to ensure viewers can follow the story without having to rely on sound.
6. Opt for a Cost Per View Model
Bumper ads possess an enormous advantage: the skip button does not kick in until the 0.05 mark, making the video virtually unskippable. Since the ad duration is so short, consumers have no choice but to view the video until the end. Using a Cost Per View Model is especially advantageous to marketers, as they make money every time the video is displayed. So even if your viewers click on the skip button at the tail end of your video, you get to pocket the cash thanks to the CPV model.