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Indian consumers want control of video ads

News, 12 October 2016

NEW DELHI: Indian consumers differ from much of the world in that they actively like seeing ads online, but their frustrations with video ads are just the same – most want to be in control of them and most are put off brands that use forced pre-rolls.

According to a survey by video ad tech company Unruly – which has just opened offices in India – some 62% of online consumers in India liked seeing ads for products or services that they were interested in while browsing the internet, compared to just 28% worldwide.

The least enthusiastic age group in India was younger millennials, but even among them more than half (54%) were happy to view relevant ads.

But the Unruly Future Video Survey: India, based on a poll of 500 consumers as part of a global study, also highlighted how local consumers were more likely than the rest of the world (71% v 62%) to want to dictate their own interaction with video ads – controlling when they start and being able to stop, replay and share them.

Younger Indian millennials' relative lack of enthusiasm for online advertising translated into greater indifference about the need to control video ads: 57% of this group felt the need to be in control, compared to 77% of the country's Generation X consumers.

The study also revealed that more than half of India's online viewers (56%) felt annoyed or put off a brand when they were forced to watch pre-roll ads.

And while they were generally less likely than those in other countries to consider using ad blocking software (83% v 93%), ad load and frequency were the factors that were most likely to drive them down this road.

Across all age groups, the number of ads (53%) and being shown the same ad over and over (52%) were most frequently cited.

Authenticity is another issue that brands clearly need to consider, as more than three quarters (77%) of those surveyed said they lost trust in brands when their ads feel fake.

Utility (66%), entertainment (53%) and authenticity (51%) emerged as key requirements for all age groups of Indian viewers.

Data sourced from Unruly; additional content by Warc staff