According to Harris Interactive, three fourths of Americans have watched a commercial on television and then found themselves wondering what it was about. It’s a number that holds through all age groups and through all levels of education.
89% of poll respondents said they watch TV commercials (11% do not), and 75% are at least occasionally confused. 4% say this happens very often, 21% say often and 55% say not very often.
Only 14% say that they are never confused by a commercial.
Harris offered some analysis of its poll, saying, “Commercials are supposed to be somewhat clear. Yes, they can be artsy. Yes, they can be clever. Hopefully they are both entertaining and informative as well. But, a commercial’s main focus needs to be selling a product or service. If consumers watching these commercials are unsure of that main focus, the marketers are doing something wrong. This is especially true in these trying economic times. People are cutting back on purchases so the advertisers need to do everything in their power to convince a consumer their product is the one to open their wallet for. If the ad is confusing that may dismiss that product from consideration.”