Why you should optimize your TV commercials for Twitter

A new study with GroupM shows videos optimized for Twitter are more visible and more memorable than running TV commercials on Twitter

After spending months creating and fine-tuning a TV commercial, advertisers are understandably proud of their work. But many make the mistake of taking an ad built for TV and running it, unedited, on Twitter. Every medium, including Twitter, has its own best practices for shaping the message within. Because TV and Twitter capture attention and convey information in different ways, video that works on TV won’t necessarily work on Twitter.

Using three key metrics — visibility, memorability, and brand love — Twitter and GroupM set out to understand if videos that are optimized for Twitter perform better than videos that are not. On the measures of visibility and memorability, we found that Twitter-optimized video outperforms a rerun of a TV commercial on the platform. For brand love, optimized video on Twitter outperformed the same video on major competitor platforms. The results show why we don't recommend TVCs on Twitter, and instead encourage brands to optimize their video by following a few of our best practices.

Optimizing video for Twitter can be as simple as following these best practices: include upfront branding, design ads that work when sound is off, and make an impact in the first three seconds.


Video ads achieve great visibility when optimized for Twitter. Compared to a non-optimized TV commercial running on Twitter, eye tracking technology showed that 3% more people saw the optimized video ad. For a campaign set to reach millions, 3% more eyes equates to several hundred thousand more people seeing your brand's ads.

Visibility on video ads when they are optimized for Twitter is 3% more than non optimized.

*Significant at the .10 level


According to our study, optimized ads may make your brand more memorable. Compared to TV commercials, optimized videos achieve +19% in unaided recall and +6% in message association. In fact, more than 1 in 2 people exposed to a video optimized for Twitter correctly associated the brand to its message. And even better, we found that video optimized for Twitter drives an increase of 33% (vs. non-optimized TVCs) in emotional engagement.

Optimized ads may make your brand more memorable

*Significant at the .10 level

Brand love

Optimized video on Twitter helped ignite more brand love than the same video posted on other platforms. A total of 76% of people exposed to the optimized videos held a favorable view of the brand, 77% of people found the brand in the video likable, and 71% found the brand credible. For every metric, Twitter significantly outperformed the average across competitor platforms:

Optimized video on Twitter helped ignite more brand love

Significant at the .10 level


Source: Twitter-commissioned study: GroupM +Twitter, EyeSee, TVCs vs. Optimized Ads on Twitter, December 2018

Twitter users were recruited online and exposed to a Twitter feed with either the TVC or optimized test ads embedded. While exposed, their eyes and emotions were being tracked using eye tracking and facial coding techniques. The users then completed a virtual shopping task to understand their purchase intent and filled in a questionnaire including an RTM task. Research vendor — EyeSee

  • Insights
  • TV
  • Expanding Reach
  • United States
  • Optimize at Scale
  • Media & Entertainment

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