Apple confounds conventional wisdom around ever-shorter video ads

By our News Team | 2022

Tech giant releases a new video ad that is almost nine minutes long. And it’s attracting close to a million views a day on YouTube.

How long should a video-based advertisement be? One minute seems too long in these days of consumers’ short attention spans.

Thirty seconds then? Perhaps. Fifteen seconds? Seems right, but can it get the marketing message across.

Apple, a brand that is known for doing things a little differently, has gone in the opposite direction and recently debuted a video ad that comes in at just under nine minutes in length. 

And, bucking all the conventional wisdom that suggests today’s consumers have an attention span of seconds rather than minutes, it has attracted 11-million views in only 12 days on YouTube. In other words, not far short of a million new views a day.

Advertising Strategy

A scene from the new nine-minute Apple video advertisement. Photo credit: Apple via YouTube

Latest in a trilogy of not-so-short videos

The latest Apple video ad is part of a trilogy called The Underdogs, with the first two versions released in 2019 and 2020. These, however, were shorter at three minutes and almost seven minutes respectively. 

All are mini stories in their own right, but use their fun storylines to showcase a range of Apple products that can be used in everyday business or home life. Each story follows four downtrodden and nurdy workers at a packaging design company who are constantly at odds with their bullying and demanding boss.

The latest ad shows our four anti-heroes deciding that they’ve had enough and opting to join the post-Covid Great Resignation that is permeating much of the developed world.

For marketers and their agencies, the ad’s success seems to indicate that remarkably long video can, indeed, captivate consumers, who will actively seek out and spend time watching something with an entertaining storyline – as opposed to allowing 15-second or 30-second ads to run in the background while they’re grabbing a cup of coffee or dashing to the loo.

You can watch the latest Apple ad here.

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    Dr Kin Kariisa

    Group CEO - Next Media

    Dr. Kin Kariisa is an extraordinary force at the helm of Next Media Services, a conglomerate encompassing NBS TV, Nile Post, Sanyuka TV, Next Radio, Salam TV, Next Communication, Next Productions, and an array of other influential enterprises. His dynamic role as Chief Executive Officer exemplifies his unwavering commitment to shaping media, business, and community landscapes.
    With an esteemed academic journey, Dr. Kariisa’s accolades include an Honorary PhD in exemplary community service from the United Graduate College inTexas, an MBA from United States International University in Nairobi, Kenya, a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from Huazong University in China, and a Bachelor’s degree in Statistics from Makerere University.
    Dr. Kariisa pursued PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radboud University in Nijmegen, Netherlands. As a dynamic educator, he has shared his expertise as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at both Makerere University and Radboud University.

    Dr Kin did his PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radbond University in Nigmegen, Netherlands. He previously served as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda and Radbond University in Netherlands.

    Dr Kin did his postgraduate courses in Strategic Business Management, Strategic Leadership Communication and Strategies for Leading Successful Change Initiatives at Harvard University, Boston USA.

    • Other current and previous roles played by Dr Kin Kariisa:
    • Lecturer of e-Government and Information Security to graduate students at Makerere University, Kampala and Radbond University in the Netherlands
    • Director of Eco Bank Uganda Limited, one of the largest banks in Africa
    • Chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters, an umbrella industry association for all Television, Radio and online broadcasters in Uganda.
    • Chairman of Board of Directors of Nile Hotel International, that owns the leading hotel in Uganda, Kampala Serena Hotel.
    • Chairman of Board of Directors of Soliton Telmec Uganda, the leading telecom company in Optic fibre business managing over 80% of optic fibre in Uganda.