The Future of Advertising is one word …


Now I know this isnt such a new statement – but consider these clues …

When the folks who created ET the movie (I hope I am not dating myself here) wanted to use M&M’s as the candy that ET was most attracted to – Mars said no but Reese’s Pieces said yes. Following the release of the movie Reese’s Pieces sales went up 65%. That’s no small feat to move the needle of a candy manufacturer that much! And some might say that’s just good product placement (read Contextual).

How about Pontiac, who decided to launch their new car the Solstice on The Apprentice. By using a clever call to action on the ads featured in The Apprentice, ads that said something to the effect of – register to be one of the first few able to buy this car (not register to win). They were able to drive sales and search traffic went through the roof (like 4X that of normal traffic to the Pontiac site), again I would argue good, smart product placement (read Contextual)

Product Placement and Content PlacementIn thinking about this post tonight, I was considering the effect of TiVo and DVR, lets face it, its a game changer for the 30 second TV spot. And when (as I predict) you can get search on TV like you can on the web to watch whatever you want when you want – the 30 second spot is toast. Ok, then the only advertising will be within the TV shows themselves – hence product placement or contextual.

If we learned anything from Google and their business model it’s that contextual ads work and they work really well. I think the strategy going forward is for TV – product placement, Print – Contextual (ie I wont advertise unless this issue addresses something I am really hard core about) otherwise I am going to spend online where I can place my content where I want as an attraction vehicle or where someone else has content I would like to located near.

Hat Tip to Bill Tancer author of Click

11 comments to The Future of Advertising is one word …

  • Turner

    Yes, if you adopt innovative marketing techniques, we can definitely get amazing responses from people. Small changes to our usual advertising strategies is more than enough. I am telling this from my experience at in working for few of the clients.

  • Anonymous

    i agree.

    the Future advertising could be really fun.

    I find the photo really cool , you can share this photo here at

  • interpretivist

    What concerns me about this shift is a move towards a world where we as consumers could potentially not know when we’re being sold. I feel like this poses a bit of a problem.
    I mean maybe I’m being cynical here but imagine a world where corporations have invaded every little space in public domain. It would become incredibly hard to judge whats authentic and whats not.

  • Flip aKa House

    Nice blog

    I´m a big fan of Buzz marketing, “think more, spent less” the principal tip for present and future marketeers

  • Hamilton Wallace

    The “one word” always reminds me of that great line from The Graduate, “Plastics!” Now that I’ve shown my age, I agree with contexual. You only need to look at Adwords as it becomes one of the biggest forces of advertising. The huge power of 95 characters: context.

  • Steve Farnsworth

    Paul, Great blog. I think you hit the nail on the head. The implications for all corporate communications are staggering. It should be a fun ride!

  • Anonymous

    Overall, I agree that being in the right spot at the right time can lift a brand (candy or cars), but I do have one concern with this article.

    If, as suggested, we place only in print issues where the topics are a 110% match with the product, that could leave us advertising in 1x issue per year. Is that really enough impact to create a lift? Let's face it, Reeses & Pontiac were mentioned over and over…that frequency in the right context gave them the lift. Not just a one time placement in the hour show.

  • Eileen Perrin

    See the 4 minute video at the link below. We can now measure what part of a picture you are looking at and understand how people look at pictures / objects differently. Before long, we’ll be able to measure how purchase intent varies when an actor holds a Pepsi in their right hand instead of their left hand!! Absolutely amazing!

  • Paul Dunay

    @ Anonymous – you raise a good point – one highly contextual ad wont build your brand – but repeated contextual ads certainly will

  • Paul Dunay

    @ Eileen – very cool – thanks for sharing that with us

  • I’m a little amazed at how long its taken for contextual advertising to sink in. We all know Google has been doing it for years. But, how often do you we see ads that don’t seem to have anything to do with what we’re reading or watching, online and off?

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