Two hippies sit on their yoga mats, extending a not-so-appealing invitation:

In our sweat lodge, we bask in our own musk.

Join us.

They freeze. The words “OR NOT” slam across the top of the screen to the beat of an ancient drum.

“Natural, without going overboard.”

In just 10 seconds, the ads in Arm and Hammers’ latest natural deodorant marketing campaign catch viewers’ attention, make them laugh, and present the product in a succinct but effective way.

With marketing, the imperative to keep it short and sweet cannot be overemphasized. Quickly capturing viewer interest has become increasingly vital as attention spans shorten and viewership options diversify and evolve.

Playing on the Skip Button

YouTube’s “skip” button can also exacerbate the brevity barrier, forcing marketers to either find a way to interest viewers sufficiently to get them to watch past it, or to produce a clip that gets to the point in just 5 seconds.

Some companies have decided to acknowledge this conundrum within their commercials to create interest and get viewers to continue watching.

GEICO played on YouTube’s skip option in this “Unskippable” ad, featuring two guys ecstatic about their insurance deal, yelling “SAVINGS!” as they leap to high five and freeze mid-air.

“You can’t skip this GEICO ad, because it is already over.”

But our buddies remain suspended in air for the remainder of the 60-second clip.

Another ad in the campaign centered on the same concept.

Get creative: Chipsmore’s fakeout

Chipsmore Malaysia indulged in their own chicanery in the “Sorry, not sorry” fake-out ad. At first, the segment looks like the message YouTube gives viewers when a video is not available: “This video does not exist. Sorry about that.”

Then the word “not” falls down and viewers see what is up.

“This video exists. Sorry about that not.”