Attention K-Mart Shoppers: Blue Light Special on Facebook
Interesting article in the September 14th Wall Street Journal, “Lights, Camera, Advertisements.” It talked about how K-Mart stores spent $600,000 to make a Facebook episode of a show called “First Day.” The reason: advertising. “First Day” is a series aimed at teenage girls, where the main character relives the day over and over again ala “Ground Hog Day.”
What’s interesting is K-Mart chose to produce this show in order to advertise its offerings. The characters will be wearing K-Mart clothes, and using K-Mart products; so the point of the show is to get K-Mart’s merchandise out there in plain sight so they can drive sales. Doing it on Facebook makes it a much cheaper alternative to network advertising.
The Facebook episodes only last five to eight minutes: so the production expenses for crews, equipment, locations, catering, etc are much lower than a conventional TV production. Also, it’s estimated that eight million viewers saw the episodes; versus fourteen million viewers who watch “CSI,” but that same money would have only bought three or four 30-second spots. You do the math on what you think the better “price per viewer” is.
Why is this happening? Let’s do a little “Network Broadcasting – 101.” Advertisers buy commercial spots from television broadcasters. The broadcasters than run the shows (with the commercials) so they are seen by millions of people. So, the advertisers are paying the broadcasters to get their marketing messages to those millions of viewers. That was the TV model since the 1950’s.
But now, we have a new player in the mix; and his name is “technology.” When was the last time you watched a TV commercial all the way through? In the world of DVRs, Netflix streaming, YouTube & Hulu, and streaming video to smartphones and tablet computers: who’s watching commercials?Continued on the next page