Mountain Dew has introduced a new energy drink, MDX, and will launch a BBDO created ad campaign called Be Nocturnal, consisting of two spots, "All Night Long" and "Sunglasses At Night," October 22 during the World Series to introduce the drink. Print and radio will accompany the television. Check it all out here.
Philips Electronics is paying CBS $2 million to be the sole sponsor of 60 Minutes this week. The show will kick off with a 90-second ad followed by two stories in the first half of the show. During the second half of the show will have two ad breaks. Total ad time will clock in at 6 1/2 minutes versus the usual 12 with affiliates dropping in a few local ads.. There will also be an opening sponsorship billboard.
Apple's announcement last week it will air episodes of ABC's Lost and Desperate Housewives, among others, over it's new video iPod has caused concern among network affiliates who feel "off TV" viewing will hurt rating and/or make ratings in accurate, let alone destroy their business model. All the hand wringing that will, no doubt, go on for the next year or two surrounding this issue could easily be skipped with the simple acknowledgment that every bit of broadcast programming will ultimately be available for download with or without advertising, viewable on an iPod, a similar device, a PC or ported to and viewed on a TV. Current appointment television viewing as we know it will disappear. Current rating systems will become irrelevant. And the buying of "TV advertising" simply won't be the same.
While it's been done before by USA Networks and others, this might be the most relevant dollar bill sticker promotion to date. To spread the rod about its new show Commander in Chief, ABC has affixed thousands of dollar bills with the image of Geena Davis, the star of the show who plays the President in the series. A less relevant dollar bill promotion highlights NBC's unscripted series Three Wishes.
As if consumers haven't rebelled enough about increased commercial and promotional proliferation on television, broadcasters are inserting the knife deeper and twisting it more aggressively. While ABC says the total number of minutes per hour of advertising hasn't change in three years, the network, which began the practice last season, this year has required show producers to slice episodes into six acts versus the traditional four increasing the number of breaks per hour and angering viewers in the process.
Seemingly oblivious to people's abhorance of advertising, ABC Ad Sales Chief Mike Shaw said, "We've had the exact same commercial load for three years in a row. People must "feel that way because they love the show so much, that they really notice it when the breaks are there." That's precious.
Everwood producer Greg Berlanti doesn't like the practice saying, "It makes you long for the day when everything comes out in boxed sets of DVDs so you can enjoy it." Given the rise in outraged, DVR-enabled consumers, that day may not be far off. The current television advertising model is a losing proposition. As broadcasters struggle to maintain ad revenue by shoving more ads through consumer's eyeballs, people, increasingly armed with methods of avoiding ads, will rebel, lowering ad viewership thereby causing broadcasters to foist even more insanity-based methods of forced ad viewership upon consumers until the entire broadcast television model implodes on itself and finally experiences the death it so dearly deserves.
While we're not quite what the draw is about watching television on a 2.5 inch screen in a world of 50 inch televisions, we can't complain about Walt Disney's deal with Apple to provide next-day downloads for $1.99 via iTunes to the new video iPod of ABC's popular series Lost and Desperate Housewives, among others. With dwindling television viewership and, hence, dwindling ad revenue for networks, providing mobile, commercial-free, pay-per-view programming makes a tremendous amount of sense for the nets. If this takes off, networks will run with glee to the bank. Marketers, with an ad medium pulled out from under their feet, may not be so happy.
With Kid Rock, Dennis Hopper, Matthew Fox, Jerry O'Connell, Michael Imperiole, Wayne Gretzky, Rick Pitino, Alex Trebek, and Sir Richard Branson; trainers Bob Baffert, Bobby Frankel, D. Wayne Lukas, and Todd Pletcher; and jockeys Jerry Bailey, Jorge Chavez, and retired Racing Hall of Fame jockey Angel Cordero Jr., the National Thoroughbred Racing Association has introduced a new $5 million ad campaign with the tagline,"Who do you like today?" Gee, we don't know but campaign creator Conover Tuttle Pace's Chip Tuttle clarified who the campaign was aimed at, saying, "This is really targeted to the core fan, the light fan, and the potentials." Well, gee, again. That sounds really focused.
Recovering from his astute targeting comment, Tuttle went on to explain the campaign, which has the celebrities, trainers, jockeys, and fans asking or answering the question, "Who do you like today?", saying, "I think everyone in this room would agree that we've just about exhausted the variations of brown horses running in a circle. We're out of clever ways to do that as television advertisers." Well, we'd definitely agree with you on that, Chip. Tuttle also says the campaign is intentionally not focused on the horses but on the people who play the horses.
Here's an ad for the Washington state lottery in which a woman freaks out to a 911 operator for reasons other than one would initially think. As Adrants reader Sean Orr points out, this spot does a great job illustrating America's hyper-capitalist, greedy obsession with money no matter what the cost. Oh sure, it's humor but what's humor without a reality on which to base it?
Since her days on Party of Five and The Byrds of Paradise, we knew one day Jennifer Love Hewitt would finally see herself at the top of the television rating charts. And she's not there not just because of her breasts. She has an alluringly charming attraction - cute but not overly bubbly - which seems to have finally paid off with her I-see-dead-people drama Ghost Whisperer on CBS. Currently, the show is number one on Friday nights with 10.86 million viewers. Given endlessly proliferating fragmentation and a Friday night time slot, ten million is very impressive. Patricia Arquette's similarly themed show Medium still does slightly better but that's in a far better time slot. With the success of Ghost Whisperer, it looks like JLH can finally leave behind her clothing company (it's a joke, people), her TV Guide covers (also a joke) and set her sites of television success.
In an OMMA keynote, CBS Digital Media President Larry Kramer said the webcast of "Everybody Loves Raymond" was an experiment to determine how many people watch the show online and what traffic is driven back to the Viacom site. The webcast carried no ads but in the future, Kramer said shows could carry ads which advertisers would pay additionally for and an option to view ad-free shows for a fee might be offered as well.