21 March 2008

Advertisers, Here Is Your Future

Apple has launched their AppleTV with the ability of renting movies online. This is a really cool service and no doubt will grow in popularity much to the chagrin of Blockbuster. Many game developers have been releasing titles online as well. We are witnessing the revolution of our entertainment access.

I had to open a membership with Blockbuster last night as my son wanted to rent a game for his Wii. As I looked around the store, I wondered who would occupy the retail space in another 4 or 5 years. One cannot imagine a lucrative or any other future for the video rental industry... or the video reproduction industry for that matter.

Here is a quote from Rahul Sood's blog in reference to PC Gamers and creating new technologies to make the user experience better through online play or downloading of game software:

"Another way to look at this is you no longer have to worry about spending $50 on a game that sucks; you can play it for $1.50 until you close the application. Or if you prefer not to spend any money you can choose to watch an ad for a particular sponsoring product prior to playing and then play."

What Rahul says about choosing to watch an ad for a sponsoring product in return for free access to the game is very intriguing and in my opinion, the future for advertisers. Not too sure if it was Rahul's idea or if it came from the meetings he attended, so credit on the idea itself can't be assigned to him absolutely - although he is very insightful and visionary and it wouldn't surprise me to find out it was his idea. And, as his firm is a client of mine I reserve the right to suck up, kiss ass and brown nose.

After all, pay to play inhibits growth - water follows the path of least resistance - if there are choices between free and pay, you can always bank on free to provide the quickest trials and if the product is good, quick growth. Facebook would not be where they are had they charged even a nominal fee for membership.

Here's how the future will work:

Imagine that you want to watch a new release movie, you go to your digital TV, select the movie you want and are presented with:

You have chosen to watch Bee Movie, it is available for $3.99 to rent. But wait, there are 3 sponsors that are willing to pay for this movie for you in exchange for you learning more about what they have to offer. Would you like to watch an interactive product pitch from one of the three sponsors in return for your free movie rental? Here are the 3 sponsors choices: Bee-Maid Honey (manufacturer), Green Thumb Garden Centres (retailer) or Natural Born Killers (exterminators).

Note 2 key points: sponsors are relevant to the user or content/subject matter of the movie and 'interactive'.

If the pitch is not relevant to the user, it's a waste of a sponsorship - this is a great opportunity for advertisers to target demographics and psychographics in a pay per click environment - much like ad words on Google. Of course, if you don't fully understand the brand you are marketing, you will inevitably select the wrong key words or ineffective key words - but that's a whole 'nother blog.

Unimaginative advertisers will produce a 3 minute pitch in the form of a standard commercial, view only - this will make for a nice break to get a beer and some popcorn ready for the feature presentation.

Advertisers that understand the true potential of this medium will produce an interactive ad that is part sales pitch, part question and answer and requires the viewers attention and response before advancing - if cleverly written these can be informative, entertaining and rewarding to both the pitcher and the pitchee.

This has so much potential in every application, not just gaming and movie rentals. When we finally get to the future, we will see this everywhere.

This free message brought to you by Kevin Franco. Get yours today.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

sponsorship is not a new concept but i like where you went with the interactive pitch, good idea

3/22/2008 09:53:00 AM  

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