Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The days of writing about the death of the TVC are numbered



'The days of the TVC are numbered'.

I thought I'd post my 'for' argument that appears in today's copy of B&T magazine.

It's (cough cough) a topic that has been written about a few times before but it still seems to provoke discussion.

I hope you find it entertaining if nothing else.

Damn, how did I end up on the unwinnable side of the debate?

I’m sitting here snatching some time during the ad breaks and racking my brain for that elusive first argument.

I’m watching Mad Men series 2. I saw the first on DVD and my brother keeps promising to download the second for me so I can watch it all in one go but it never seems to materialise (hey if you haven’t checked out Mad Men on Twitter, you must, I’m following nearly all the characters).

Anyway, I just can’t see TV commercials going anywhere fast. I mean ad breaks give me time to shuffle off to the kitchen, and trawl about on the net which I seem to be doing a lot more of lately. And I can flick around and watch a few things at once which is useful with the amount of crap on.

So... still thinking. This is hard.

I just put out a call on Twitter for some food for thought on the topic. People responded with comments about participatory culture, ‘conversation’, the amount of entertainment choices available and blah blah blah.

OK sure I agree our entertainment consumption is becoming more social with video sharing sites and gaming and stuff, but I’ll often have a good chat in front of the TV...especially when the ads are on. There’s plenty of so called ‘conversation’ happening there so take that digital boffins.

Back to the task.

I guess there’s the ‘interruption’ argument that people often tout.

You know, like a TVC is the equivalent of someone you don’t know (or even like that much) yelling at you about something you have no interest in? Look sometimes it takes a lot to get someone’s attention and shouting loudly and waving can help.

I don’t think that’s it.

And I mean, if I’m finding the ads to be an interruption I can always just switch off or jump online and go do something else. It’s not like I HAVE to sit through them is it?

And if it’s a brand or product that really interests me, I can find stuff for myself. Like a few of my friends have PVRs now and we’ve been chatting about them online and swapping ATR tips (appointment to record). One of them sent me a Nielsen stat from the New York Times recently noting over half the audiences for US prime time shows like Greys are now watching via delayed viewing.

Show’s back. Maybe an idea will come to me in the next break.

*Image from Nataliedee

1 comment:

'Pong said...

Honestly, TVC creative is quite boring here in the region. I grew up in Thailand, where advertising space is everywhere. There is a certain style in Thai TVCs that has to be entertaining to resist channel hoppers. TV programs and TVCs are in the same package.

TV networks here are struggle to get new audiences let alone to maintain the old ones. Nine is trying to hard, Ten is stuck on aging reality shows and there's no new strategies from Seven. Only SBS and ABC release their show on the Intertube.