Viewers tuning in to NFL games this season on FOX will be exposed to another type of TV ad to go along with the standard :15 and :30 length units. A new six-second ad format will be used during live sports, beginning with NFL games on FOX during the upcoming season. These units will be available on a national level only and will not be sold by local network affiliates.
So where will these :06 ads air during a broadcast? The goal is to air these ads in unique placements during quiet segments in the broadcast. For the NFL games, it could air during time-outs, replay reviews, or quick transitions between touchdowns and the ensuing kick-offs to change possession. These would air outside of the traditional commercial break, offering a quick opportunity to reach a highly engaged audience as they wait for the action to continue.
The introduction of this new ad format by FOX is part of a larger effort to capture an audience with an attention span that continues to grow shorter in today’s landscape. With this format, Fox is also hoping to improve the TV viewing experience by shortening ad loads and therefore limiting commercial breaks.
Marketers will be challenged to not only determine the value in a :06 placement during a broadcast, but also, how high of a premium are they willing to pay for an original :30 unit? With a network like FOX reducing their ad load, there will be less ad clutter for advertisers due to fewer commercial breaks, but this will also likely cause the network to raise their rates. It’s also entirely possible that other networks will do something similar if FOX proves to be successful, changing the TV landscape even more.
Advertising Age: “FOX Will Air Six-Second Spots in NFL Games” (Jeanine Poggi)
Pro Football Talk (NBC Sports): “FOX Will Use Six-Second Commercials in NFL Broadcasts” (Mike Florio)