I spent a good portion of my off-time in front of the tube. I was watching at all kinds of weird hours, and spent some time on channels I'd never ordinarily watch at all. I didn't watch any of the new breed of game shows, though, I had to draw the line there. To me there isn't much entertainment value in witnessing the self-involved publicly exercise their neuroses.
The thing I really noticed was that it seems all the adverts are the same. Not the same as in production values, but the same ads for the same things. Pills of all kinds, insurance, cars, and here and there a major department store. Shipping, ISPs, office supplies and other stuff for back-to-school. Ads for that paper towel on a stick called the Swiffer are everywhere, in numerous applications. What's next -- the Swiffer Dog Bath? The new ad for the Suzuki whatever really sucks, BTW -- the sound is like a garage band recorded on somebody's pocket recorder. Did they mean to imply their new motorcycle is cheap and poorly assembled?
Ad critiques aside -- yes I could do that all day! -- there was another idea that came to me while immersing myself in what's left of mass-market culture.
Sometimes the ads are better than the programming. I guess that's nothing new.
I can't tell you how tired I am of surfing the channels only to find the same ad I was trying to escape running almost everywhere I go. The good ones are never repeated like that.
So the BIG question (actually two) I have for marketing/advertising professionals everywhere is this:
Is it really necessary to interrupt what a potential customer is doing in order to give them your message? Do you think so little of your product or service you can't do anything but sneak in the message sugarcoated by another such as a sitcom or drama?
But what if we could have all our ads in one place? There is no reason to simply reject this idea out of hand. Shopping channels do great business, and infomercials are nearly endemic in off-hours programming. I, for one, would love to watch my favorite drama or sitcom without interruption. I really hate those damn promos on TNT complete with sound effects, that so often intrude on a program they create a problem watching the program that's already running.
In hard-copy, ads are outside the main body of text. Same with blogs and most other online things. Why not have an Advertising Channel and be done with it?