LONDON: People do not warm to digital video ads – particularly non-skippable ads – and need to be rewarded by relevance or entertainment if they are not to skip early, an industry figure advises.

In a WARC Best Practice paper, How to optimise video creative across screens, Dominic Twose, Global Head of Knowledge Management at Kantar Millward Brown, addresses the creative aspects of video rather than media strategy.

He notes that whatever the platform – television, social, mobile – people don't think long and hard about ads and what they mean.

They just take away the bits that were most engaging for them, he says, "and most of the time this is driven by scenes in the ad that hold the most emotional content.

"If the memorable scenes are intrinsically connected to the intended brand associations, you have a powerful creative vehicle."

The importance of the most engaging scenes relating to both the intended association and the brand is fundamental across all platforms, Twose adds.

But ad performances can be fundamentally affected by context, for example, when, as often happens, consumers do not get a full exposure; and the pattern of viewer retention also varies by platform.

"The extent to which people will click away from an ad as soon as they can is very high," he says. "This has two clear implications; there is a need to 'reward' people for staying with the ad; and the key elements need to be conveyed early."

Mobile in particular, he observes, "offers the potential for unique rewards; in terms of relevance to time and place, but also in terms of helpful apps".

Ultimately, Twose concludes, "our analysis suggests that responses to video ads are often consistent across contexts.

"Generally a good ad is a good ad no matter the context."

Data sourced from WARC