Want to capture customer attention with online video ads? They’d better not be more than 15 seconds long, a new poll suggests.

According to a survey by Poll Position, about 54% of Americans think 15 seconds is the acceptable time to view an online video ad before seeing free content, from YouTube clips to streaming TV episodes.

The poll — conducted among 1,179 registered voters via a telephone survey — found that patience is low when it comes to sitting through a lengthy commercial before gaining access to the content they want to watch. Only 12% of consumers believe 30 seconds is an appropriate length.

Meanwhile, 4% of respondents said a 45-second ad is acceptable and 3% said the same thing about a minute-long ad. About 27% expressed no opinion on the matter.

The news comes on the heels of a study released last week by eMarkerter that revealed marketers are expected to spend more on online advertising than ads for print magazines and newspapers for the first time in U.S. history. In fact, online advertising is projected to generate $39.5 billion in sales this year — a 23.3% increase from 2011 — compared to $33.8 billion on print.

As online ad revenues continue to grow — and more marketers invest in ads that air before online videos — advertisers looking to hold the attention of viewers should keep the message short and simple.

Original article here.

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