Is 6 seconds enough?

You may have seen our blog post “Taking Aim at YouTube”.  Here we took a look at the news that YouTube is reorganising its advertising function with the introduction of more advanced targeting and analytics for its advertising.

It now seems that YouTube is trying to keep up with other social networks in order to take a larger slice of the social advertising pie. They recently announced that they will be scrapping their 30-second un-skippable ads in favour of their already implemented six-second ‘Bumper ads’. This is a brave move by YouTube, as they may loose ad revenue and/or face criticism for increasing cost for ‘air time’.

For marketers and agencies this poses a new and interesting challenge. Can you realistically tell a story, communicate a message and ultimately sell a product or service in six-seconds or less?

YouTube have sought to prove the effectiveness of these ads by challenging agencies to translate famous books into six-second snippets on the channel.

We enjoyed the novelty of these ads, however these are classic well-known books and are unlikely to make sense if you weren’t familiar with the premise of the story. This clarifies the key issue that six-second ads are going to pose to advertisers. If you are aware of the brand, their voice, their products and values, then 6 seconds could certainly work to engage potential customers in a campaign. However, for challenger brands, it is unlikely that 6 seconds are going to give enough space to tell the brand story as well as the product or service they are offering.

We have already seen innovative examples of these Bumper Ads with classic brands such as OldSpice and Audi. But again this poses the question, can challenger brands use 6-second ads to truly communicate a message?

Want to produce great video content that tells a story and professionally represents your brand? Get in touch to find out how Lionhouse can help at or call 01225 445427.