Tuesday, April 10, 2007

TV Commercial Ratings

Here are a couple of articles from Ad Age that should interest everyone that watches television, regardless of whether they're interested in ads or not.

Turns out a new system is being set up to rate ads on whether or not consumers "liked" them. The idea is to rate ads the way shows are rated. In other words, if your ad—no matter how much you've paid—causes viewers to change the channel, you'll be punished because of it.

One of the articles believes that, by putting ads and shows on an equal measuring scale, a new era of creativity will emerge. Not in TV (unfortunately) but in the ads sandwiched around those shows:

Proper commercial ratings -- the type that rate each individual spot, even on a second-by-second basis -- have the potential to reinvigorate creativity. Just as the TV buyer can call the seller after he or she receives the overnight ratings to discuss why a program isn't pulling the promised numbers, commercial ratings will give marketers a real insight into whether people actually want to watch their commercials. Marketers and their agencies will be able to see the exact drop off in viewers and compare that across different types of creative.

A top creative at BBDO makes a good point though, indicating one of TV's biggest flaws: it's American Idol-ish democracy:

"You'd hate if every ad became the equivalent of 'Two and a Half Men,'" he said.

As someone looking to get into the business, this all sounds very cutting edge and exciting, though I'm sure ad veterans may feel their current models are threatened.

We'll see what happens.


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