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Study: Branded Content More Effective Than Short-Form Ads

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New York-based Digital Broadcasting Group (DBG) believes that people don’t just want to see the same ads online that they’ve already seen on TV. DBG is specialized on long-from branded video, and it just published some data to prove that this type of advertising works better that your typical 30 or 60 second ad. DBG measured a 9.3 percent interaction rate with its long-form videos in 2009, compared to a 3.1 percent interaction rate for short-form video, as measured by Google’s DoubleClick unit (s GOOG).

DBG is also pointing to longer viewing times, with the average exposure time for its long-form content being 63.04 seconds, as opposed to 34.57 seconds for short-form ads. The company is basing these results on measurements of 65 long-form branded content webisodes it produced in 2009 for companies like Coca Cola (s KO) and Walmart (s WMT). The company’s video network reached a potential audience of around 26 million unique viewers in November of ’09, according to ComScore (s SCOR).

Of course, the results of DBG’s study are more than a little self-serving. One should note that interaction is defined as “any consumer interaction with the video player,” which coincidentally also includes muting or pausing the video. Also, the study does mention that DBG’s average video episode is 3:29 long, which puts the 63 seconds exposure time into context. The company wasn’t able to supply us with numbers about the average completion rate of their videos. I guess this means that advertisers better get their message out early on in a video, no matter whether they’re using long-form branded content or traditional short-form advertising.

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