People Watch More Commercials, Thanks to Social Networks
by Leslie Meredith, TechNewsDaily Senior Writer
May 02 2012 06:42 PM ET
NASA's Don Pettit announces the new "Angry Birds Space" from the International Space Station.
Ads get a bad rap, but they're certainly not ignored — at least not the ones made for presentation during the Super Bowl, or provocative enough to prompt water cooler conversation. With the explosion in social video, watching ads has become a source of entertainment itself.
People chose to watch online video ads some 1.3 billion times during the first three months of this year, according to a report released yesterday (May 2) by video analytics firm Visible Measures. That figure represented a 40 percent increase from the same period a year earlier, and a 225 percent increase from the first quarter of 2010.
Thanks to the Super Bowl, the number of people who watch ads spikes every winter in late January or early February; sometimes the ads are more talked about than the football game. This year's big increase underscores how people love compelling videos even if they're made by companies touting products.
However, two non-Super Bowl ads also won spots in Visible Measures' Top 5 for the first quarter of this year. Who stole the show? With more than 170 million views, the controversial "Kony 2012" video about Joseph Kony's army of children in Africa took Facebook by storm. It topped the Top 5.
A video ad for Rovi's "Angry Birds Space" game featuring NASA astronaut Don Pettit, launched nearly a month after the Super Bowl. It came in fourth with more than 30 million views.
As for the rest of the Top 5, M&M candies' Ms. Brown came in second overall with 41 million views. The most watched Super Bowl ad of the year, Volkswagen's riff on "Star Wars" called "The Dog Strikes Back" took third. And Honda's remake of "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," also airing during the SuperBowl, claimed fifth place.