Home > Uncategorized > To be or not to be – a commercial

To be or not to be – a commercial

February 22nd, 2006

TiVo is a device that makes it easy for people to record what’s broadcasted on TV and play it back later.

Most of the discussion around TiVo and advertising is about how consumers are using the service to evade commercials. True enough.

But that’s only half the story…

TiVo also allows users to order commercials.

That’s right. Order commercials. Now, what kind of nut would ask for commercials?

Someone who is very into the product being advertised.

If you happen to be a BMW fanatic, you can order now order up videos made by BMW about… BMW.  Sure sounds like commercials to me, but this is not TV advertising as we know it.

To viewers who are not in love with BMW cars, these are some of the most boring, wooden videos ever made. But that doesn’t matter to the target audience who are reportedly consuming them like popcorn.

BMW is doing two things right: 1) they’ve made their video available, bad as it is and 2) they’ve gone to great pains to make it easy and comprehensible for their prospects and customers to consume it.

It is content? Is it advertising?

Now that advertisers can deliver video messages directly to consumers and fine tune their messages exactly to their indended audience, the game is changing – radically.

The winners? Advertisers and consumers.

What do you think?


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  1. February 23rd, 2006 at 09:49 | #1

    Hi Ken,
    I think providing “infomercials” to your client is a great idea. There is a thin line between pitching the product and sharing the benefits and uses for a product. Of course you also have to be concerned with message to market match. In my confetti business, my Corporate Event Planners don’t want to see commercials about weddings and vice a versa.
    Like any tool, if used properly, it will be a win-win solution. The challenge with any new tool is for the masses (marketers) to use it properly and not abuse it.
    Since audio has become so easy to put online, I have seen audio used in some of the most foolish ways. Ways that actually distract from the sale, not enhance the message. The same goes with video, marketers need to be smart, if you glut the market with useless, poorly produced videos, visitors will start to either ignore it of hit the start button the second the video auto starts.
    Like any other DM vehicle, it will be successful if used to give information, not just pitch, pitch, pitch!
    John Jaworski
    Real Results Right Now
    Direct Marketing Consulting

  2. November 18th, 2006 at 04:14 | #2

    I’ve been wondering how long it was going to take before the word “vodcast” becomes the next “hot word” like “podcast”. It looks like it has arrived!

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