Following up his not so positive opinion of ABC's move to offer shows online for free, Todd Copelvitz (yes, you will be hearing a lot more from him) offers ABC five suggestions on how they could have, and still can, make the offering better and more inline with people's media consumption habits. For Copelvitz, as it is for us, it's about choice. Provide people choices. Todd says ABC should offer their programming in multiple formats. Not just ad-supported online of pay-per-download from iTunes but provide a full gamut of choices from pay to free, from TV to cell phone. Let the consumer choose to pay for ad-free TV or ad-supported TV. Let them choose the sponsors they want to hear from as Weatherbug does. Adding to that, make the commercial specific to the medium through which it is delivered. TV gets bog bold production. Cell phone gets smaller, more interactive version.
In reaction to ABC's announcement it would provide advertiser-supported free programming online without the ability to skip ads, Todd Copelvitz suggested ABC check out these things called DVRs and Slingbox which allows a person to access their DVR from anywhere in the world...and skip the ads. Now, Todd has a guest writer who likens the industry's missteps 100 years ago with the advent of radio to current missteps by broadcaster faced with the possibilities the Internet provides.
The writer wonder about ABC's mindset here writing, "...does anyone really believe that if you force me to sit through a commercial while watching one of these shows online that I'll really pay attention to it? Nope, I'll be checking my email, having an IM conversation and paying my bills online. Because that's how I use my broadband connection and any advertiser trying to get my attention has to understand that."
On this week's episode of The Apprentice, Donald Trump, with his usual "listen to me speak because I don't give a sit what you say" style, fired home builder Bryce, pretty much the most level-headed, well-grounded apprentice in the bunch. His team lost a challenge in which they had to develop a jingle for Arby's new like or natural chicken sandwiches. While we're not so sure why that's such a differentiating factor since we've never met an unnatural chicken - except perhaps in a bucket of fried KFC, the Arby's execs wanted to drive home the point their chain is the only place to get natural chicken. I wonder if they's ever heard on Boston Market or any other restaurant that serves chicken. Now, if they mean organic, hormone-free chicken that isn't slammed against a wall to kill it like PETA so loves to show us in its videos, that might be something to hang the "only" strategy on.
Because News Corp. is salivating over the potential millions in ad revenue advertisers eager to reach 60 odd million MySpace members may dump in its lap, the company is cleaning up MySpace, removing racy profiles and "offensive" images. It may all be for not as teens and twenty something will likely say "screw it" to News Corp's attempts at cleanliness and move to other social media spaces or create ones none of us has heard of yet. MySpace became a guerrilla overnight. It could fail overnight too. These days, it's too easy for people to gravitate to a place where they feel comfortable rather than put up with corporate censorship simply to please advertisers. It's the advertisers who will have to adjust rather than the corporations.
Putting aside the fact a publisher can accept or reject any ad they choose for any reason whether they agree with the ad's message or not, human rights activists are not pleased with The New York Times' decision to take $929,000 from Sudan for an eight page insert touting the country's "peaceful, prosperous and democratic future. On one hand you can say this is wrong because it attempts to glorify what many, including the Times itself, feel is a not so nice government. On the other hand, you can laud the move as a clear separation of church and state between the paper's editorial and its advertising, the kind of thing American's love to celebrate.
We love PSAs. We especially love PSAs from countries outside the U.S. where creating an ad that dramatically delivers the message isn't hampered by left, right, middle-winged cause groups that feel anything beyond a shot of a smiling baby will be offensive to...well...some small minority no one's ever heard of. So we gleefully share this Berlin-based public serviced announcement encouraging bicyclers to wear helmets.
The AARP, bastion of those unworthy of inclusion in the coveted 18-49 demo, is issuing a wake up call to youth-fixated media planners and twenty-something ad agency types in the form of a new research service called AARP Publications Marketing Intelligence. The service hammers home the point over 50's have the bucks, aren't all in a rocking chair on a deck in front of a lake in Maine and are cooler that a lot of twenty-something who think they know it all. So, now that we've insulted you enough, go out and grab this research, talk to this audience and smile as they open up their fat wallets and throw money at you and your brand.
CitySpecific points out an ad for HBO's polygamy-themed Big Love placed in the New York Times wedding announcement section. The ad shows Big Love star Bill Paxton in three separate wedding announcements with his three brides played by Jeanne Tripplehorn, Chloe Sevigny and Ginnifer Goodwin. CitySpecific questions the Times acceptance of this ad but we think it's just another inevitable sign of things to come.
Completely misunderstanding current culture, NBC, after forcing YouTube to remove several Saturday Night Live clips, has re-released on NBC.com the very same clips it said should not have been freely distributed. Explaining the twisted brilliance of the move, NBC VP of Interactive Stephen Andrade said, "We were concerned about building their corporation instead of ours since it's our video. We would like to make it as easy for people to share as we can, so we're trying to provide as many tools as we can to do that." Gee, if we were NBC.com, we'd be more than happy for YouTube and everyone else to suffer the bandwidth and infrastructure costs to freely publicize our content.
Following Time Magazine's lead, Nationwide Insurance is doing the consumer-generated Times Square billboard thing. Visitors to the Life Comes At You Fast site can submit a "moment" that somehow relates to the whole Life Comes At You Fast thing and, if accepted, it will appear on Natonwide's Time Square billboard. TM Advertising did the work.
We suppose there's a vanity play here and we're sure we're jaded by years of this stuff but...oh screw it...we were going to complain but whet the hell. People love to see their own faces in public places. We're just not the stand behind the GMA camera and wave like an idiot sort of guy.
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