New research shows that the cinema audience's attention span is seven times higher than any other video platform. The research was conducted by Lumen, attention specialists who work with media clients to better understand audience attention to advertising. A person's attention span while watching an advertisement on an average video platform is 2.5 seconds, according to attention technology research conducted by Lumen.
According to Eric Blignaut, national sales manager at Ster-Kinekor, the challenge now for marketers is how to rebuild brand love and customer engagement in an increasingly competitive landscape. Advertising on the big screen is the perfect medium for doing just that.
What can your customers recall in those few seconds? Post-Covid, marketers are under pressure to win back the hearts and minds of their customers, and that job requires more than 2.5 seconds — especially with longer duration assets.
The research further shows that the second highest-attention media is YouTube's un-skippable ads. However, attention drops as the ad starts and after 2.5 seconds, the ad has lost 42 percent of the viewer's attention. In comparison, after 15 seconds, cinema advertising has lost only seven percent. The Lumen research provides compelling evidence regarding audience retention of adverts viewed on the big screen. As such, we are more than happy to share the findings with any of our current advertisers or prospective clients.
Further to this, Kantar research shows that, compared to other channels, cinema ads are considered:
Better quality, despite cinema hardly ever receiving its own asset.
So, while cinema reach may be overshadowed by other media types, it outperforms other media, including all video platforms, when it comes to cutting through the noise.
Ster-Kinekor represents 60 percent of the cinema market in South Africa and is the single biggest cinema chain on the continent. Cinema delivers on environment, impact and attention because the audience displays a high affinity for the medium, as Kantar recently revealed in its Media Reactions report. As such, cinema is a critical channel for growing brand affinity and maintaining brand perceptions while building incremental reach.
Despite the current tough economic outlook, people still have a propensity to be entertained, and going out to watch a movie on the big screen delivers a great entertainment experience. As a medium, cinema is resilient; it has been around for 128 years, has survived a number of technology disruptions and is still going strong, showing a steady recovery post-Covid. It remains unique in its fresh content slate and delivery and offers a lucrative, economically active audience who wants to be there.
In the past fiscal to June 2023, Ster-Kinekor sales enjoyed a 67 percent increase in the number of booked campaigns, with 41 percent of total campaigns screened coming from new advertisers predominantly in the alcohol, retail, tech and financial categories.
Tasneem Lorgat, senior manager of advertising at Toyota South Africa says, "Adverts scripted to tell stories that resonate with South Africans is very much part of Toyota's DNA. And cinema has stood the test of time in delivering an immersive audience experience. It therefore remains an integral part of our media strategy."
Jeannette Saayman, buying manager at The Media Shop says, "The advantage of big screen advertising is that cinema allows us to showcase our clients' longer duration creatives in an environment where audiences are conducive to receiving commercial messages."