'Sarah Marshall' ads hard to forget, skip


NEW YORK "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" proved memorable or at least entertaining enough to keep TiVo viewers from skipping ahead.

A broadcast spot for the Universal comedy ranked as the highest among commercials airing during a show, according to April ratings released by TiVo.

The spot ran during an episode of NBC's "The Office," which failed to make the Nielsen top 10.

The ad campaign for "Sarah Marshall" also was the least fast-forwarded on broadcast primetime in April, TiVo said.

"Once again, the lack of correlation between ads viewers choose to watch, compared to the top-rated programs, is astonishing," said Todd Juenger, vp audience research and measurement at TiVo.

"The commercial with the highest viewership appeared in a program that didn't even crack the top 10," he added. "The highest-rated program, 'Grey's Anatomy' airing on April 24, had 33 paid commercial spots in it, but only two of them (both for motion pictures) made the top 10 commercials."

Ads for new movies comprised five of the 10 top-ranked commercials that aired during the month.

Among the top five commercials were ads for the film "Hancock" during ABC's "Grey's," for Ford during Fox's "American Idol," for the film "Made of Honor" during ABC's "Desperate Housewives" and for Glaceau Vitamin Water, also during "Idol."

In terms of time shifting — where viewers have the option of fast-forwarding and control over the ads they watch — the top four ads ranked the same, with a spot for the movie "Sex and the City," which ran during "Housewives," coming in fifth.

Steve Miller is senior reporter at Brandweek.