Why the 6-Second TV Ad No Longer Works for Many Advertisers

The once-revolutionary linear format is now ancient history

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The ad inventory in next month’s Super Bowl, which has been sold out since mid-November, includes spots of all sizes: 15 seconds, 30 seconds, 60 seconds, even 90 seconds. Well, almost all sizes: Fox did not sell any six-second ads in the game.

“We’re very mindful of clutter,” explained Seth Winter, evp of sports sales for Fox Sports. “And frankly, I think six-second ads are clutter.”

Fox isn’t the only one in the industry moving away from a linear ad format that was seen as revolutionary when it was introduced—ironically, by that very same network—just 2 1/2 years ago.



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This story first appeared in the Jan. 6, 2020, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.