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The first time I heard this, I knew exactly what it was:

The audio track of a TV or video spot.

For many years it has been common practice for ad agencies to send radio stations the audio from TV commercials to air as radio spots.

That’s almost always the sign of an agency that’s either lazy or ignorant.

The audio of an effective video ad almost always supports the visual images…but the visual images tell the story.

In fact, a good test of a TV commercial is if the viewer is able to perceive the message while the audio is muted.

I heard this one on Spotify.

“Aha! Then it was streamed with some sort of visual accompaniment — a video or, at least, a static image that reinforces the ‘branding’ effect of the campaign.”


Yes, probably it did have a visual component.

But no, most listeners never saw it.

Most people who listen to Spotify rarely if ever “look” at the commercial.

(The exception is for “Video Takeover Ads,” which appear only when users are engaged in activity for which they must be looking at the screen — for example, searching for a particular artist, song or genre.)

Listeners to this spot who know nothing about “Batteries Plus+” still know nothing about that advertiser.

Advertising should be optimized for the medium via which it is delivered.

“Audio taken from a video ad” rarely results in optimal use of the client’s radio advertising budget.

More often, it’s the equivalent of advertising malpractice.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Pete Ferrand January 31, 2022, 1:31 pm

    Agreed. But the larger issue with this business is that Batteries Plus has never been competitive on anything I’ve ever gone into the store for. Plus if it’s an odd battery they’ve never, ever, stocked it. So when I hear the name I go, meh, useless waste of real estate. And generalities about powering people’s lives – whether in audio or video – isn’t going to change that.