Archive for the ‘Advertising’ Category

I’ve always thought that the point of mass-advertising, in this case radio advertising, was the hope that you’d at least hit a few people who were in need of your product at that moment in time. Yesterday, I realized that that hope appears to be gone, at least when you’re advertising to me.

I’ve been looking for a new mattress for my daughter. She’ll soon be moving from her crib to her new “big girl” bed and I have no idea what kind of mattress to buy. How am I supposed to know what’s comfortable for my 22 month old? Anyway, I decide to head over to the mall to check out a few stores. On the way, I hear an advertisement on the radio for a mattress store. Perfect timing, right? Wrong, without even thinking about it, I change the station. It’s at that moment that I realize that here is an ad, perfectly timed for my situation, and I can’t be bothered to listen. Maybe I’ve become too cynical of radio advertising, but I’ve listened to so many advertisements that have no value to me that when I hear one that could be valuable, I still perceive it as a waste of my time. If there are other people out there like me, then mass-advertisers should be very scared.

It’s come to the point that advertising means nothing to me anymore. Maybe it’s entertaining for a few minutes, but rarely is there any value in it. When I watched the Super Bowl this year, I couldn’t help but think about how much money and time was wasted on putting these commercials together. Mass-advertising is too much of a one way street (me always giving my time for nothing in return) and it’s too late to fix the problem. I’m not paying attention anymore. I might be part of the minority but I’m guessing there are more than a few people out there just like me and it’s only matter of time before we’re the majority.

So now, back to my mattress search, anyone out there have any recommendations? I’m tired of trying to comparison shop when the same mattress goes by different names depending on what store you’re in. Can’t this industry standardize on models, types, naming conventions, etc. It’s enough to make your head spin…and maybe that’s the point.

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Here’s why Apple is the brand every company wishes they had. When people outside your company are willing to spend hundreds of hours not only recreating one of you stores in every last detail but also your products and advertising in an online virtual world, you have the greatest advertising machine in the world.

Companies each year try to figure out ways to get people to create such content. Apple just has to build a new store or put out a new commercial. A following such as this doesn’t happen often and it clearly shows why a company should embrace user generated content and not try to shut it down. Apple probably receives millions of dollars in free advertising each year through such content and I’m sure it puts some healthy sales numbers into their bottom line.

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I’ve been a Sprint PCS customer for about 7 years now. I’ve always had great things to say about their customer service. They’ve always treated me well. When I was temporarily living in a hotel for 6 weeks, they comped all my overage minutes, no questions asked for 2 months. But now something has changed that is starting to annoy me. Over the past few months I’ve been receiving advertising text messages. I’ve never signed up to receive them and they come through similar to a voicemail notification which means I’m usually fumbling for my phone only to realize it’s another meaningless ad.

What I want to know is, what has changed? Like I said, I never received this spam for the first 6+ years of my service. Now I have to go figure out how to get off this spam list. Has Sprint ever heard of opt-in? Why should I have to do all the work? If this is going to be how Sprint treats its most loyal customers, then I’ll be finding another phone service. That Apple phone is looking better and better.

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Apple on 24

Last night I finished watching 24. One thing that I found very interesting was Apple’s product placement in the show. Instead of purchasing the ad space to have all of CTU’s computers running Mac’s, Apple paid only to have Chloe use a Mac and Apple monitors. This makes a very subtle statement which I think works, at least for me. Chloe is the brightest and most talented employee at CTU (and most unique you could say) and having her use a Mac while everyone else is stuck using Dell’s coincides nicely with Apple’s “I’m a Mac” ad campaign.

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So as I was thinking about how to justify the cost of an 8GB iPhone, I started thinking about the potential of selling an advertising spot on the device. Laser etching has become quite popular and the potential to have your logo etched on a device that is sure to gather lots of looks could be enticing to some companies. From there, I started thinking about developing a business around such a market and it has had me wondering whether there is enough potential there for this to work.

What if you started a company that sold certain high tech gadgets for well below what they cost in stores by offsetting the saving by placing laser etched advertisements on the device? You could start a sort of Google Adwords for high tech gadget company selling prime real estate on laptops, phones, and other lusted after gadgets. If you could get a MacBook Pro for under $1k and it had a couple of logo’s on it, would you? I think I might and many other out there would too but the savings would have to out weigh the cost of cluttering up that nice MacBook design.

Now is there an advertising market? I think there is. I’m willing to bet that there are plenty of companies out there willing to pay decent money for a prominent spot on a device that is sure to get a lot of looks and attention. How much attention do you think the iPhone will get when it first comes out? If you had a web site that could be accessed from the iPhone would it be worth while to have your logo on the device? Perhaps. What if this person saw your logo for the life of the phone (perhaps 2 years or more) and hundreds of other people saw it as well? There is just as much value in this then there is in placing an ad on a billboard. I think if you could gather certain demographics this would be a great advertising tool. For instance, soft drink companies could place ads on any device that would be used on a college campus.

Now for this to work, I think you need a tool that would allow a person to select what the device they want to buy, the number of ads, and the size. This way, you could place just two ads on your MacBook and save some money or place several ads and save a lot of money. Advertiser would need an interface to bid based on logo size, product type, and demographics. There’s a lot of potential here and it could be a great opportunity if done right.

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