We love TV time shifting, but for ads?
Over in North America, which has several time zones, everyone loves time shifting. It means that if, for some reason, you are up at 3:30am, then you can still watch Oprah. Now time shifting has been applied to ads: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/28/business/media/28adco.html?_r=1.
Something we always argue as media planners is that people actually do want to see relevant ads. AdKeeper agrees so strongly, that they are offering a page where viewers can save ads they want to see for later. They say that once an ad is saved to AdKeeper, the click through rate goes up to 3.4% - what they neglect to say is the percentage of ads saved in the first place.
This seems to defeat something else media planners keep arguing: that people see ads, ads are subtle and ads are remembered. By offering time shifting, we're trying to apply a different tactic that says, we know you don't want to look now, but we're sure you'll be all over this later. Consider this: when was the last time you ripped out an ad in a magazine and put it aside in a folder so that you could review it later?
A study by the Online Publishers Association found that 96% of participants paid attention to their ad units, 67% within the first 10 seconds and returned their eyes again to the ad. Who knows if it will work, as even the test advertisers seem doubtful, but offering time shifting slams the brakes on what we've been trying to argue for years and puts online advertising firmly in reverse. Boo.