All of us consume advertising differently which is why most advertisers interperse their television advertising throughout a variety of targeted programming and at different points during a television show. Yet, a new study by Interpublic Group's Magna Global indicates that there are certain times when viewers actually pay more attention to a commercial based upon the type of program being watched. (Source: AdAge.com)
Among the variety of procedural dramas on major networks, e.g., CSI: Miami, NCIS, attention is usually most substantial in the initial segments of the show, where the crime is committed and/or the viewer finds out the set-up for the episode.
What about comedies and sitcoms? If you watch Modern Family or 30 Rock, you likely pay the most attention during the last ad break in the program--the one which occurs before the funny segments airing during the ending credits. Those who watch Big Bang Theory pay the most attention to the first commercial break.
The last ad break of serial dramas is also the best placement for high attentiveness. The highest rated ad breaks in Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, and Parenthood were the last one. These are also the ad breaks where the networks tempt viewers with scenes to come from the next episode.
Each year when the Super Bowl rolls around we hear about the advertiser who picked off the coveted first commercial pod position knowing that viewership is usually highest at the point in the game. Now, we can all pay attention to which advertisers have positioned themselves in these high attentiveness periods on dramas, sitcoms, serials and other television programming.