Another Marshall McLuhan quote, the idea that “the medium is the message” refers to the effect of the media channels – not the content – on the way advertising messages are received.
A video advertisement is content. That video can be placed on many different media: online banners, prime time television, Facebook, etc.
Nothing has to change about the content itself from medium to medium – but perhaps it should change depending on the medium.
A 30 second spot is comfortable for consumers watching American Idol on a television; however, that’s too long for someone scrolling through Twitter. A risqué ad might be well-suited to certain websites but inappropriate for television.
Are there print ads that could work well as banner ads, magazine pages, and billboards? Yes.
But if the message can be delivered more efficiently in another way through other media, advertisers should be able to understand how to use each medium.