Ad Length and the Presence of the Timer in In-Stream Commercial: An Abstract

Conference paper
Part of the Developments in Marketing Science: Proceedings of the Academy of Marketing Science book series (DMSPAMS)


One of the most prominent phenomena in the online environment is the rapid growth of the in-stream commercial, where video advertising appears before, during, and/or after viewers watch their chosen content (YouTube, 2016). However, a limited number of scholarly articles have investigated the factors affecting individuals’ avoidance of the advertising exposure—mainly based on the traditional commercial context (e.g., zapping behavior for television commercials)—by focusing on the cognitive aspect of the decision-making process. Thus, we proposed two important features that might influence the consumers’ irritation level: the length of in-stream commercials and the existence (versus absence) of the countdown timer based on the concept of temporal uncertainty (Monat, 1976; Zakay, 1992) from the uncertainty theory (Knight, 1921).

The study employed a 2 (length of ad, 15 s vs. 30 s) × 2 (timer: presence vs. absence) × 2 (disruption situation: in-stream commercial before the movie trailer vs. viewing the in-stream commercial only) between-subject randomized experiment, with 264 MTurk users.

We found the main effects of advertising length for consumers’ perceptions of the advertising value (M15 s = 3.49, SD = 1.48 vs. M30 s = 4.04, SD = 1.71; F (1, 216) = 6.40, partial η2 = 0.029, p < 0.05) and perceived informativeness (M15 s = 3.82, SD = 1.50 vs. M30 s = 4.36, SD = 1.56; F (1, 216) = 7.00, partial η2 = 0.031, p < 0.01), but we failed to find the main effects of the time cue. Thus, contrary to our assumption of the negative relationship between the length of the ad and consumer’s evaluation of the advertisement, the longer advertisement (i.e., 30-s ad) was considered more valuable and informative for the consumer. Although statistically not significant, this pattern was similar for our main interest: consumer irritation. Those who viewed the shorter version of the ad felt more irritation (Mirritation = 3.19, SD = 1.49) and exhibited a higher level of irritation compared to those who viewed the longer version of the in-stream advertising (Mirritation = 2.93, 1.62).

References Available Upon Request

Copyright information

© Academy of Marketing Science 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of TexasAustinUSA

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