The Danger of Digital Elasticity

Mother Kissing Toddler's Cheek

Over the years, I’ve been asked to judge many ad award shows. I’m honored, and curious to see work created in other markets.

Award show judges used to dread reviewing the radio category entries–– where sixty seconds can seem like a death sentence, but that’s changed. Now the dreaded category is online videos.

This category is a hateful wasteland. At least radio spots are created within the limits of time. Videos, unfortunately, are not.

They drone on and on and on. Videos become dumping grounds for inane corporate factoids, spoken over cliched images of business people shaking hands, farmers mopping their furrowed brows, little children running to embrace their daddies returning home from work, construction workers walking in slow motion toward the camera, and mothers with loving eyes looking upon sleeping infants.

You get the drift.

It’s all there, piled into a never ending video created with no time limit and little creative discipline. Proof of the danger of digital elasticity.

As a judge, one is left to wonder after a minute or two what the point of the video is, and why anyone besides the client, writer, art director, and editor would possibly care.

Oh, right–– it’s content and content is all rage. Can’t get enough of that content stuff.

Yes, consumers like videos, but if you’re creating videos, please be disciplined and empathetic to their attention spans.

Although there are no time constraints on digital videos, a disciplined marketer must remember there’s always an ‘interest’ constraint.

And if you lose their interest, you’ll lose your audience.