In today’s market, a lot of time and thought goes into creating a television spot. Should it be funny or serious? What is the message? Every decision from concepts and logistics to target audiences comes together to make a spot. But in a world of fast paced and ever-changing technology, there is one more decision to be made, one that just a short time ago was not a factor at all: To go or not to go…HD.
In the past, a big reason that companies may have chosen to avoid HD advertising was the increased costs. A lot of stations did not have the ability to have HD footage uploaded directly to them for airing. And while it is still true in some cases, a lot of companies have taken the necessary steps to make this possible. Another way the costs for HD advertising were increased in the past was when third party delivery services were employed in order for the ads to be delivered and aired. Often times this process was viewed as burdensome, and with charges ranging from $150 to $250 dollars per spot, the polished look of HD was abandoned. All costs aside, there are some television stations that still do not accept HD spots from local businesses at all.
Another possible reason why a company may have wanted to avoid HD in the past were the precautions that had to be taken. Spots being aired in HD could become cut off, if not centered correctly on the screen. This is due to the change in screen size from a square shape to a more rectangular shape. But as technology advances, these problems are quickly disappearing.
As the problems of HD advertising fade out of memory, the old ways of SD are going along with them. Many smaller companies are choosing to advertise in HD in order to keep up with the big names in advertising. In return, they have a crisp looking ad that can hold its own during prime time rotation. To aid in the quest for HD spots, many production companies do not include increased rates for HD. There are some out there however, that do charge a premium for HD, mainly due to the increased time and data consumption it requires.
In the arena of advertising, any little way to get ahead or get noticed counts. As HD is becoming more and more common, it is easier and more sensible for companies to go this route. Although HD may still not make perfect sense for your business, it is small price to pay for the added quality on your next television spot.
For more information on HD Advertising, contact Propulsion Media Labs at 610-640-4040
Intern, Propulsion Media Lab
Communications Studies, West Chester University