We don't profess to have a clue how the inner working of the Nielsen measurement conglomerate works but common sense tell us if they can measure a minute, they can certainly measure 30 seconds. Answering the industries call to measure what matters, the commercials rather than the programs in which they air, Nielsen has announced new minute by minute ratings but has also scrapped plans to measure smaller chunks of time in which most commercial actually air. The new system will allow for matching a measured minute to the time an ad ran but why not simply measure the actual ads? Oh, because most suck, no one watches them and it will quickly become apparent that placing a :30 on TV is no longer a wise decision thereby causing a dramatic drop in television revenue, part of which goes to pay the hefty sums Nielsen charges for its measurement services. Sort of a catch-22 situation.
This old system of measurement really should be dumped and replaced with a system like Ad ID and other "marker" technology used by viral marketers to track viewership of viral video. The thing gets viewed, it gets counted. It doesn't get viewed, it doesn't get counted. That doesn't happen with Nielsen. And yea, yea, there's the whole thing about matching viewership to demographics but hey, we just write about this stuff. We don't profess to be able to figure it out.
Joe Jaffe comments that this week's Ad Age poll, which is a follow on to a study they did about blog readership at work, which asks whether employers should allow staff to read blogs at work is self-serving. I agree and commented that the whole distinction between blogs and mainstream media is overblown, "Exactly, Joe. What's the difference between reading a blog on a topic for a specific industry versus a 'regular' website for a specific industry? It makes no sense. If blogs are doing a good job of providing industry specific info, then they should be read. If mainstream media site are doing the same, then they should be read as well. If people like to read Page Six, then it should be OK to read Gawker too. There's far too much distinction being made here. Granted, there are huge differences between MSM and blogs but, in the end, they are both providing content. It should be up to the reader to decide whether MSM or blogs are doing a better job providing relevant info."
Oh and if this doen't wreak of self-promo:
"Thank you for your interest in AdAge.com's poll. The poll about blog reading at work is now closed. Watch for the results in next week's print edition of Advertising Age." WTF? The results of an online poll reported in the print edition? A week later? You must be joking. Scott, what are you guys smoking over there? Oh, we get it. You need more print subscribers. Now it all makes sense.
So that we aren't accused of simply highlighting odd advertising stunts without giving credence to their success or failure, we point you to a MarketingSherpa study that examined Calvin Klein's one day "live" billboard in which male and females Calvin Klein models hang out in a board constructed to look like a living room. Usually these things are tossed off as stunts purely to garner media attention which, though not a bad thing, doesn't always translate into sales. This time it did. Times three, in fact. The promotion, along with achieving media coverage in 15 countries, 100,000 visitors to the campaign's microsite and 20,000 street team sample packs gone by mid-day and another 20,000 but day's end, netted three times normal sales for CK One at the nearby Macy's Herald Square location.
Jeff Jarvis, as he has done before, is calling for system of measure for citizens media that would properly reflect the nature of this consumer-generated media space. Because many media outlets in this space are simply too small to be counted with the ill-fitting mass media metrics does not mean the outlets are not important to advertisers. Jeff has approached Burst Media's Jarvis Coffin to set up a trade group to represent this new form of media and suggest metrics consist of a combination of values such as authority, influence, ability to start conversations, relationship with readers and reader loyalty and engagement with the media outlet. He suggests, among other sources, data from blog measurement firms such as BlogPulse, Technorati and Icerocket be combined, or "munged" as he says, into a data source that would properly reflect the weblog and make it easy for an advertiser to substantiate spending any ad dollars on the blog.
After recently being released from a prison sentence for her involvement in the ImClone scandal, Martha Stewart has proved that with the right attitude and business sense, a comeback is possible for America's favorite homemaker and her company. According to Hitwise, the share of U.S Internet searches for "martha stewart" increased by 145 percent during the week ending Sept. 17, 2005, and visits to MarthaStewart.com have increased, reportedly, sending visitors to advertiser sites as well as her own newly re-opened online retail store. While inquisitiveness does not guarantee love, it's a pretty good indicator there's renewed interest in ankle-bracleted celeb.
Fifty-eight percent of consumers are "very aware" or "somewhat aware" of custom publications and once they were presented with specific examples of custom publications, 93% of respondents were familiar with at least one type of custom publication, according to a new national poll conducted for the Custom Publishing Council by Roper Public Affairs this summer. The survey, "Americans' Relationship with Custom Publications and the Companies that Provide Them," found that 85% say that if they are going to get information from a company, they'd prefer to get it in an interesting collection of articles, rather than an ad.
Though only 58% immediately knew the term "custom publishing," once surveyers explained what custom publications were – e.g., a magazine from the manufacturer of an automobile that you drive – 80% said they often find interesting information in these magazines and 75% said that they felt better informed after reading these publications.
John Brock points us to a story about a company, formed in 2004, called Brain Fingerprinting Laboratories which claims its brain imaging product can determine whether specific information has been stored in a person's brain. The company, which just teamed with Millward Brown to compare the technology to traditional surveys, plans to launch an advertising measurement division and predicts that division will employ 100 people within a year or two and generate $250 million in revenue. Perhaps we've finally reached the reality depicted in Tom Cruise's Monority Report.
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 a recent study, Forrester Research named Critical Mass the best web design firm. Not that there's anything wrong with Critical Mass but Forrester deemed the pool from which this winner would be chosen to be 17. Yes, out of the hundreds of web design firms in the country, just 17 were deemed worthy of consideration. While we understand it's impossible to examine every firm in the country, for the sake of research, we hope this group of 17 was culled from a larger pool.
Most of you have heard of this thing called blogging but that's because you work in areas where blogging is commonplace. However, regular folk, the folks we, in advertising, sell to day in and day out don't have a clue as to what blogging is. At least in England. A recent study among taxi drovers, pub landlords and hairdressers found that 70 percent had never heard of blogging. Most thought the survey was asking about dogging, the practice of watching couples have sex in semi-secluded spaces. Hmm, blogging as a perverted sex fetish. Not exactly what the blog elite and the blogebrity had in mind.
This research confirms the notion we've supported for a long time. Weblogging is just a really easy way to publish a website that, because of the platform, gets easily distributed and picked up by search engines.