The 4A’s just announced that they are discontinuing the “Television Production Cost Survey” after 25 years. The last report recorded an average cost to produce a TV spot of $354,000. It seems that the traditional advertising industry has finally realized they’re not in Kansas anymore.
The internet tornado changed everything a while ago, so the idea that anyone would spend $354,00 on just a TV spot has not made a lot of sense for some time. Video, however, is just as important, if not more important, than it has ever been, especially since broadband has made it so accessible on the web. But it hasn’t made sense for years to just produce a TV spot. Now every time a brand spends a dime on production they should be not only producing content for TV commercials, but also for digital channels. That might be videos for Youtube, a website, a mobile app, viral sharing or whatever. Of course it takes special skills to know how to use content in digital channels ; but that’s another story.
The big trick has been to get brands to move from the mindset of “we’re going to make a big, expensive TV spot once a year” to "let’s produce videos all the time". It used to be OK to just produce a TV spot once a year, but now content, especially video content, gets old as soon as it’s been watched. So the challenge is to produce a stream of fresh, high-quality content without it breaking the bank (How to make great brand videos). That’s where digital agencies like IQ have had an advantage over our traditional friends. We came out of TV into the digital world back in 2000. But we never lost our skills, and with a studio, editing, sound design and animation in-house, it’s easy for us to quickly and in-expensively produce the stream of content our clients need (IQ content/video portfolio) So it’s good to see the 4As acknowledging that the world has changed, if a tad late. Consumers still want lots of video, it’s just the rare brand that can spend a small fortune on just a TV spot without a strategy for the rest of its media world.