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Wednesday, August 09, 2006

TV ads dropping in relevance

From ArsTechnica:
A research report from consulting firm McKinsey says that TV advertising isn't as important as it once was, and is destined to go deeper into irrelevance with each passing year. The report, released to the company's major clients this week, largely blames changing consumer habits for the rather stunning drop in advertising efficiency it reports.

So what will it take to reverse this sea change in the advertising market? Well for one, it may not be reversible at all. TV as we know it seems to be fading into obscurity, albeit very slowly. The rise of DVRs and video-on-demand only serves to accelerate that shift in consumer expectations. Soon, we'll all be addicted to the "anything, anywhere, anytime" model of entertainment delivery, and time-shifting ads into oblivion.

The next step might be to pull us in with interactive features—my cable company already lets me vote in Last Comic Standing using my remote, and is slated to start an interactive channel powered by ReacTV technology sometime this month. I'd be surprised if this isn't merely the first baby step into a much more interactive TV-viewing experience in years to come.

Online advertising experts might be able to help out, as well. Google is bent on powering TV ads in the future, and Yahoo can't be many steps behind. The TV advertising market is worth nearly $70 billion today, and that will likely never drop to zero—as long as you're willing to adjust your definition of "television."

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