The Art of The Takeover

Twitter, in partnership with MAGNA, recently announced the results of a scientific media trial examining the location of video ads within a social environment. This was called The Art of the Takeover: Optimizing What Consumers See First. The study was designed to test and formulate best practices for in-feed advertising, while at the same time creating guidelines for Twitter takeovers using in-feed video.

The report details how in-feed video ads located strategically at the top of the feed are twice as likely to be retained compared to similarly placed takeover ads on a website. This seems obvious to anyone who’s an old hand at running a social media takeover but the data breaks down the hows and whys so we can see what’s going on behind the scenes.

For example, from previous trials the following 3 facts were already known;

  • Ads feel more relevant and less intrusive when embedded within a self-curated feed
  • The same video ad is nearly 2x more memorable in a social environment compared to skippable pre-roll
  • The longer an ad is in view, the higher the awareness

So the question wasn’t whether or not in-feed video ads work but do consumers perceive all in-feed video ad placements the same? How does ad length impact an in-feed video takeover strategy? And importantly, are there different messaging strategies that are more effective for in-feed video takeovers?

The key learnings were that in-feed video ads are viewed longer when located at the top of the feed, ‘first view’ is most effective for building awareness of a new brand or product, while ‘standard view’ is most effective for creating more organic brand perceptions, and specialising the Tweet message has the greatest impact on distinct brand objectives for ‘standard view’ placements.

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By comparing a Twitter takeover to a standard website takeover and comparing video play time it becomes obvious which is more effective.

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Measuring the effectiveness of different length video ads in a takeover lead to the conclusion that while all ad lengths are memorable in a social environment, brands can get creative with ad length by using shorter ads to communicate in an effective way or longer ads to further boost recall.

It all boils down to tailoring your video length, messaging and placement of your ad to maximise the effectiveness of your take over. This method should translate across various platforms but it’s proven in Twitter.

For a look at the full report visit here.


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