Are :15s or :30s Ads More Effective? The Answer is Yes!

Nov 30, 2022

We put ad length to the test, analyzing tens of thousands of survey results for two campaigns. The result: lift across the funnel with 15-second ads, 30-second ads, and a mix of the two.

Inquiring advertisers want to know, "Which audio ad length will drive the best results for my campaign: short or long?" The answer is both, but we may seem a bit partial on that point. So, we put the question to the test with two campaign studies comparing the effectiveness of long- and short-form streaming audio ads. The results showed both ad types make an impact. And, while they each have their strengths, they’re even better together.

Two Brands, Two Campaigns, One Result

Our team of data scientists and Insights Lab experts dug into the results of Bombas and PrettyLitter campaign studies for ads run on Pandora. Each campaign ran :15s and :30s ads with three randomly selected treatment groups: short-form audio (:15s) only, long-form audio (:30s) only, and a rotation of short- and long-form audio. 

“We're constantly trying to understand the optimal way to reach customers, and Veritone One and SXM Media are great partners who enable us to test to inform our strategy. In this case, we were specifically looking at the impact of length of ad on brand lift, assessing the difference between shorter ads, longer ads, or a combined approach.” Michelle DeStein, Senior Acquisition Marketing Manager at Bombas

The Results

We analyzed 27K+ survey results for each campaign against a control group to determine the lift across key metrics. And while the results for each brand produced different levels of lift, the finds were very much the same:

  • Both long- and short-form audio drive KPIs across the funnel

  • Long-form audio performs best for ad recall, brand sentiment, and message association

  • Short-form audio performs best for purchase intent

  • Listeners exposed to a rotation of ad lengths showed stronger lifts across the funnel

Audio Ads are Effective Across the Funnel

At a high level, both campaigns were effective at boosting brand metrics. The lifts are impressive when we look at listeners exposed to any ads (length agnostic).

Short and Long Audio Ads Are Effective

Takeaway: Running audio ads improves ad recall, brand sentiment, purchase intent, and message association. Regardless of ad length or campaign objective, audio ads make a positive impression on listeners.

Different Lengths Show Different Strengths

When we dig into the Bombas and PrettyLitter results by survey question, we see that long ads and short ads drive higher results for certain metrics. And looking at PrettyLitter results in particular, it’s interesting to note that the campaign was open in terms of demographic and not targeted specifically to cat owners—making the lifts even more impressive.

“We have tested ad length in other media and were very curious to learn whether things differed in an audio environment. We were thrilled to see such strong results in audio overall and thought the findings validated what we see elsewhere: there is clear value in leveraging both lengths in a campaign to drive impact." - Deanna Bershad, VP of Marketing, PrettyLitter

Long ads drive upper-funnel metrics

Takeaway: Ad performance was strong across treatment groups, ad types, and rotation, with long-form ads providing a better lift for ad recall, brand sentiment, and message association.

Short ads boost purchase intent

Takeaway: When considering ad length, look at where your target audience is in the buying process and where your campaign goals fall in the funnel. Use longer-form ads to drive upper-funnel metrics and shorter ads to boost lower-funnel metrics.

Diversifying the Mix Boosts Campaign Results

Listeners exposed to a rotation of both lengths throughout the campaign showed strong lifts across the funnel.

A mix of ad lengths is effective

Takeaway: Incorporating a variety of ad lengths boosts campaign results and makes an impact with listeners. 

Maximize Your Ad Spend with Long and Short Ads

When you plan your next audio campaign, make the most of your marketing budget by diversifying your ad mix. Consider running sequential audio to leverage both long- and short-form ads strategically. Kick off your campaign with :30s ads to introduce listeners to your offering, and then pulse with shorter :15s ads to reinforce messaging. 

And it helps if you have the right media partner. With Pandora’s impressive daily audience share (1.2x more than Spotify and 4.3x more than iHeart ad-supported),1 SiriusXM in 1 in 2 cars on the road,2 and 59M podcast listeners3 on our network, you can’t go wrong with SXM Media. Let’s talk about maximizing your next campaign.


1. Edison Research Share of Ear Q2 2022 Study

2. Internal Metrics Q1 2022

3. Q2 2022 Internal Metrics from Podcast User Logs

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