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Is 6 seconds enough time for a consumer to absorb and retain information from an advertisement?


“Every second on mobile matters. From the palm of our hands, we’re consuming and recalling more content faster than on any device ever before. According to Fors Marsh group tests, it takes only 0.25 seconds of exposure for people to recall mobile feed content at a statistically significant rate1. And in News Feed on Facebook, we’re seeing people spend, on average, 1.7 seconds with a piece of content on mobile compared to 2.5 seconds on desktop.2″ – Facebook

When Facebook released the data I quoted above, I was taken a bit by surprise. People can recall an ad with a quarter second of exposure. It’s fascinating that we (society) talk a lot about how our attention spans are getting shorter. What we don’t realize is the our ability to comprehend is also getting faster. 

Six second ads are more than long enough to be effective in today’s world. 

This question revolves around Fox NFL coming out with six second commercials vs the normal 15 or 30 second spots during games. 

Have you ever talked about Sports with sport fanatics, they can break down a play. Detail out what each player did right and wrong, what the refs should have called (or didn’t see) and know what the coach should do next. 

The average NFL play is FOUR second long. People extract a massive amount of data from the four seconds. This means a six second commercial is 50% longer than the average play. ref 

There really isn’t a question that the ads will be effective. Maybe even more so.  They will have to be direct and too the point. 

It make sense that they move to a shorter format. With our shortened attention spans, the networks can pack more commercials into a given time period. 

Also take into account viral gifs that rule the internet. While I don’t have specific numbers, these are usually very short clips. In that short experience, people have enough interaction to react and share the memes. 

Six seconds is definitely long enough for consumers to absorb and retain information. 


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