advertising industry? How can this industry best adjust
to this ongoing technological boom?
Eden: Again, this technology in its infancy as a marketing vehicle. Ongoing testing of TiVo in 2008 has yielded some opportunities, but marketers need to target their creative and offers to
effectively reach the diverse demographics of the TiVo viewer.
This will require marketers to create different messages to better
position their products.
Hawthorne: No, we are not. Our industry needs to be in high-level discussions with all the major MSOs selling through the
importance of “telescoping” and long-form and persuading them
to be realistic in their pricing for VOD ads, which at this point is
outrageous and blind to the importance of testing.
Lee: We are in the infancy stage here and not fully comprehending the impact that DVR can have on a marketing campaign
— especially brand DR.
Stacey: It’s more a question of how to react. When you are making typewriters and someone shows you a personal computer
— that’s a problem. The TV business is changing, with channel
proliferation, competing media, splintered audiences, regulations, rates, changing viewing habits, and many other issues in
addition to the increasing use of DVRs. Smart marketers are
adjusting to this but now looking at TV as only one part of the
marketing mix and diversifying their messages.
As traditional marketers continue to flow into the DR
space, how is it affecting the industry — most notably
via media availability and pricing?
Bruckheim: In Latin America, media rates are being driven up by
the confluence of reduced media avails and increased competition between some of the key players, rather than the entrance
of traditional marketers.
Fays: Regardless of how many traditional advertisers flood the
DR space, if inventory is available, these clients will always have
a home — for the right price.
Knight: Media costs have not risen during the past year. With the
current state of the economy, high inflation, an unpredictable
market on Wall Street, and corporate budget cut-backs, unprecedented pressure has fallen on ad rates. As oil and food costs
dictate many people’s checkbooks, consumers are becoming very
conservative with their expenses. That said, if there is any business model out there that can best protect traditional advertisers’
costs with a maximum level of ROI, it would be DR.
Orsmond: Media avails in the U.K. are increasing and rates are
dropping due to the “credit crunch” affecting media budgets. This
means that DRTV advertisers already in the market are likely
to do better — they will be less affected by the downturn in the
Are production and media costs rising too quickly for
the health of this industry? If so, how do you propose we
stem that tide?
Bruckheim: To be frank, in Latin America, the expectation is
that media costs will increase at an unaffordable rate unless the
industry focuses on unity of purpose and cooperation between
the key media providers/agencies.
Medico: Many producers want to do a high-quality production
that will showcase the offer in order to generate the response
needed for success. In many instances, however, they are forced
to lower the production values that they put into the spots to
meet the constraints of the budget. Production companies may
need to look at adding value to their services by including instructional DVDs or commercial loops for retail or any other
type of service that will enhance the production and justify the
Orsmond: In the U.K., the reverse is true. Production costs have
decreased each year and this has allowed many smaller companies to test DRTV. The downside of this is that often production quality standards are compromised, and there are now a
plethora of poorly made DRTV creatives on U.K. TV screens.
Just a few years ago, higher production costs would have made
this less likely.
Sarnow: Media costs were lower in second-quarter 2008 than the
previous year. Third-quarter 2008 will be lower than third-quarter 2007. Infomercial time will be OK, and short-form media
should see a shortage from convention time to the election. The
question of how many campaign dollars will go to national cable
is the main question for short-form media buyers and marketers.
It seems many of the traditional marketers entering
the space are utilizing mostly short-form DR. How can
those agencies, vendors and service providers in the DR
space best position themselves for this ongoing wave of
Fays: Speaking from the sales perspective, it is our responsibility
to gauge where our inventory is and ensure it gets into the right
hands at a fair price.
Garnett: Most DRTV providers — especially those with a traditional DRTV background — need to start by acknowledging that they don’t know what a brand is. At present, the vast
majority of brand DRTV is merely “avoiding damage” to brands
because we’ve learned to do decent production. It’s extraordinarily rare to see a campaign that moves a brand ahead and is a full
participant with brand advertising. In the past year, we chose to
develop six fundamental measurements for determining whether