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Question: My company recently consulted with an agency about Direct Response TV (DRTV) spots for one of our products. But they want to make spots that are 2 minutes long. I read that most people only give you 8 seconds before they lose interest. Does anyone actually watch a commercial for 2 minutes? And is it cost effective to have such a long DRTV spot? — DRTV Distressed

Dear Distressed:

Yes, yes, and yes. People DO watch them and they ARE cost effective. In fact, the duration of a DRTV ad does indeed boost its effectiveness. Why?

Len Zappolo, Sr. Director of Media Services at DMW, explains: “A 15- or 30-second ad is often too brief when an actual response is the objective and they rarely leave enough time to make a sale. While 2-minute spots often cost a little more, we find they typically bring more responses at a lower cost per lead (CPL) than a 1-minute spot.

DRTV isn’t like regular TV, which is why people think it’s so odd. But if you’re looking for results within a budget and a limited timeframe — DRTV performs.

Think of it this way: The longer the spot length, the more time you have to fully convince and motivate viewers and generally attract more leads — often more qualified ones. Just as you might expect from a brief phone conversation as opposed to a longer chat at a networking event — the longer you’re together, the more time you have to inform and persuade!

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