If Youtube is the ultimate archive of self-exploitative human behaviour and ads are major persuaders in societal instruction, then it's only natural that at the crossroads we find Life Lessons I Learned the Hard Way.
This is TLC's feeble dip into the somehow unexhausted world of CGM. And guess what you win if your life lesson is the best? A chance for your ad to air on TLC, and ... wait for it ... $10,000. Yeah, that's the going rate for anybody whose exhibitionist camp gets an accolade from a big brand. (Observe examples 1, 2, 3.)
At this point we have little hope that video-whoring will go away anytime soon. That reality TV fad? Still going strong. Who'd have guessed there'd be a market for seeing anybody, not just celebrities, get gritty on camera?
Okay, aside from MTV.
- Yikes. Reminiscent of that "where the hell did all the 18-34 men Go" trauma of a year of two ago, MediaWeek's Marc Berman reports NBC's adult 18-49 demo plummeted 24 percent to a 2.2/9 compared to last year representing the lowest since September 1991. Hmm. Ratings glitch?
- The Web Marketing Association has begun the 2007 Call for Entries for the 11th annual international WebAward competition. Check it out if you can stand the insanely annoying Rovion video that incessantly appears in the lower right hand corner of the site every time you visit. This is a technology that should get shot in the head. Along with in text advertising and PayPerPost.
- CreateAthon 2007 wants 24 hours of time from agencies to dedicate their time and talent to non profits.More info here.
- Kleenex has debuted a new oval-shaped package and a program that lets people design their own tissue box for $4.99.
- While it feels like the whole graffiti as advertising trend is so yesterday, apparently, it's still a thing and Adidas has launched a project whereby graf artists are tagging a New York subway car.
To promote their Sopranos DVDs, HBO gives us two spots entitled Pole and Hair.
Pushing the objective of "[Bringing] home the Sopranos -- permanently," spots include insider nods to the Badda Bing strip club and Paulie Walnut's skunky hairdo. They were directed by Harvest Films' Baker Smith for Venables, Bell & Partners, and edited by Phoenix Editorial & Designs.
Unless you're an avid Sopranos watcher you're probably going to be all "OMGWTFBBQ?!" That's okay, because that's part of why they're so funny. We often stare sadly up at our ceilings at night and wish we were born in the mob. Sure there's sporadic death and violence, but the mobsters' otherwise zany antics (oh, and piles and piles of black market money) seem to make decent compensation.
As of April 9 Fox aired its first non-ad-supported, non-promotional content, aimed at making commercial breaks more entertaining (and thus effective) advertising environments.
This all sounds lovely and nice but the result of this thought process is a series of 8-second bits starring a Greek-Lithuanian taxi driver named Oleg. Oleg is the pet project of Ted D'Cruz-Young, founder of firm Ideocracy, previously of Saatchi and Saatchi and BBDO.
Check out spots one and two. We're not that turned-on by them (dude reeks of Borat, except he's less funny) but hey, it's Fox, so maybe the world at large will sit riveted on their couches waiting for their next hit of the taximan-stereotype's confuzzling accent-ridden reverie.
If you look at it honestly, advertising's sole purpose is to sell stuff. Forget all that crap about brand building because it's all the same thing. You build a brand so it connects with people so they are more inclined to buy from said brand. Advertising's purpose is not, despite what many would like to think, about winning rewards or creativity. Clio. Cannes. ADDY. One Show. Create. Webby. ADC. Andys. Irrelevant. You disagree and claim the winning of awards helps agencies win accounts? Fair enough but wrong.
What if we lived in a world where we knew exactly how well received our commercials were the second they aired? Well, if Nielsen and the rest of the industry can get their shit together, we may soon see that world. Commercial ratings have been much discussed over the last few years but scant progress has been made. Some half assed solutions have been put in place and even more half assed solutions have been suggested. Who wants half an ass when they cab have full on booty? Yea, we thought so.
We'd have to see it to render fair judgment and we missed its debut opting instead for Survivor and John Hughes Sixteen Candles which unintentionally sucked us in as fast as people are leaving Agency.com but last night, MTV debuted its mixed up programming block. The block merges programming with advertising and intertwined them in a heightened fashion purposefully aiming to blur the line between entertainment and commerce.
MTV describes it thusly, "Interweaving show content and the commercial experience, MTV's Thursday Night Block will present continuous engagement for the MTV audience - where shows will merge into one another, and programming content will play in commercial time - throughout a continuous 2-hour block."
Chicago's Flow Creative has whipped up a fun campaign for what sounds like a seriously mundane business, Chicago Board Options Exchange which has fun with clown surgeons who don't know how to operate and boxers who think oven mitts will do the trick. This is one of those campaigns that only makes sense if your in the financial industry. Otherwise, when you hear the close of the clown spot which says "when it comes to options, there's no substitute for CBOE." you'll just respond by asking, "Huh?"
If you've been in the online industry longer than a day or two, you've certainly heard about a company called Joost which is, seemingly, about to turn the world of online video and television on its head. Still in private beta with an official launch date set for several months out, Joost describes itself as "free TV, with the choice to watch alone or with friends. Joost is packed with internet tools such as instant messaging and channel chat, allowing people to really share the TV experience. It's a completely secure platform for content owners that respects their rights, while protecting and enhancing their brands. And it's an incredibly flexible way for advertisers to reach a truly global audience, in ways that really work. Joost isn't just video on the internet - it's the next generation of television for viewers, content owners and advertisers everywhere."
Boston Legal has always been a particularly good show, even if it has become so by positively highlighting some characters while treating others as lame ass idiots. One has to feel for the plight of Mark Valley's Brad Chase on the series who's gone from formidable fixture of strength of bumbling buffoon spending no time in the courtroom and the entire last episode stuck in an air vent. And for Julie Bowen's Denise Bauer who's gone from ass-kicking, intern-belittling powerhouse to sappy second string softie. Even Rene Auberjonis has taken a back seat at crane Poole $ Schmidt.
Following the launch of its toilet bowl-based free wireless broadband internet access offering, TiSP, Google just struck a deal with Echostar's Dish network to provide an auction-based ad sales system. The system will allow for placement on 120 cable nets and offer second by second commercial ratings. Advertisers will make CPM bid buys through existing AdWords account across the 120 networks by daypart or have the system spit out an automated recommendation based on provided demos.
Tying into Echostar's set top box and using commercial ratings, Google will provide bid details, placed ads, ad viewership and performance by network all withing 24 hours. Bypassing all the ratings foolery in which the industry is enmeshed, Google hopes to bring true value to inventory by supporting it with tangible numbers. Big names such as Intel, E-Trade and 188Flowers have bought in for early tests.
Google has made and will continue to make mistakes as it follows its path towards world domination but we have to give it to them for cutting through all the crap and, as Nike has always said, just doing it.