What Idiot Box Can’t Do For Commercials But Online Can?

This paper looks at exploring digital medium for the same commercials we see on TV.  Video is the hottest new format for online advertising. Thanks to emphasize on infrastructural development, no of high speed connections are increasing day by day. According to TRAI, no of people of using broadband connections were 5.65 million by end of JAN 09. TRAI defines a broadband connection a connection with a minimum speed of 256Kbps. This makes consumption of online video rather easy. That’s why the consumption of online videos has consistently going up. That’s why YouTube is such a success today.  Following table shows the last year video views and expected video views in this year.




Content Category


Views Per Year 2008


Views Per Year 2009


User Generated Video Content


2000 Million


5000 Million


Premium Branded Video Content


1200 Million


3300 Million


Non Premium Branded Video Content


600 Million


1000 Million




3800 Million


9300 Million

Source: Vdopia*


I have put a all possible points of comparison for everyone’s reference. And here is what they look like.



Comparison Between Commercial On TV Vs Commercial On Online Medium











High Reach.

Moderate Reach but increasing steadily. Currently 40 Million people.





Can’t be defined with before the start of a campaign with precision. Frequency is generally an average frequency.



Can be defined with precision before the start of the campaign. Frequency is highly controllable here.


Assurance of Ad Exposure



Audience may or may not see the ad.



Exposure is guaranteed.





Channel mix is chosen with higher affinity of user with the channel but spill over can’t be completely ruled out.



Demographic targeting possible which ensures zero spillover.

Audience Involvement




Scope Of Innovation


High with higher cost but zero interactivity.


High with relatively lower cost with high scope of Interactivity.



Primetime Concept


Cost for running commercials varies with Prime Time & Non-Prime Time.



There is no such concept of Prime Time. Internet is always prime time.


Who’s Watching Your Commercial



Your TG or your TG with the family. Thus, spill over.


Consumption is individualistic.





How Are Advertiser’s Charged


You get charged on no of spots you run irrespective of who saw & who didn’t see your ad.


Online give throw up an ad only when you request a webpage. Hence, more accountable. Online give you an option wherein you pay only when user sees your ad 100%. You don’t pay anything if someone leaves your ad in between.



These are some of the quantitative differences between the two mediums. There are qualitative differences also like most of the young working professional are in office most of their time. Hence makes complete sense to run your commercial on online medium.


Though this comparison is not to de-sell or to sell any medium, the purpose of this comparison is to throw some light on advantages on each medium to achieve the client’s objectives. With the growth of Internet, media fragmentation, slower rate of growth of TV(if not stagnation) and changing media consumption patterns of people, advantages of internet cant be ignored even though it’s might not be able to offer reach(in Indian scenario) as compared to TV.


6 thoughts on “What Idiot Box Can’t Do For Commercials But Online Can?

  1. Consumption of internet has been increasing drastically.
    With 3G coming into Indian market,It will enable TG to have required data at jet speed.They will be able to download the required Videos/information on there mobile/at touch of keypad.
    With today’s generation getting exposed to internet more,Internet is slowly emerging as replacable medium to target youth.
    So marketers now a days creating more interactive websites where they can involve TG more and more.
    But TV as medium still holds its power since majority of population still watches/follows and get involved on the basis of things shown on Idiot Box.
    So crux of the story is Internet is slowing trying to become the effective medium to gain more and more of consumer’s MINDSHARE.

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