Monday, November 14, 2016

The MultiPlatform Age

The  recent election in the US – and the BREXIT referendum in the UK have proven one thing decisively – media statistics are at best unreliable; at worst manipulative and biased.


 If you can’t rely on the media for statistical analysis in elections, how can you rely on them for reporting on advertising – which affect the bottom line of all media organization.  

 Advertising pays for the media moguls’ golden parachutes.  Is it in the best interests of the these guys to let their underlings report the obvious – that a lot of TV advertising is wasted dolllars, yen, pounds, and euros.

 Of course, not.

 So we have a zillion articles like this one:

This article says that TV advertising works -- because most big companies think it does.

Yeah.  Hillary Clinton thought TV advertising worked, too and spent a hug amount of money on it – only to lose to Trump, who realized, as a media guy, that advertising is really just publicity – and there are many ways to do that -- especially notoriety   His open-ended, controversial media comments were enthusiastically reported by a media eager to discredit him -- but generally distrusted.  Call it blow-back or just smart persuasion but Trump's  relative lack of TV ad work actually played to his advantage. The media did all his work for him -- for free!

 Hillary didn't understand how TV advertising works.

Neither do most companies -- and (sadly) most ad companies.  (Where is Don Draper when you need him?)

While TV commercials can be very effective  -- you have to be very smart to do them right.  If you have a limited budget, you will have to look beyond TV to other tools. 

Years ago I wrote a pitch for a small Japanese ad company in competition for French bottled water makers first introductory campaign in japan.  Our competitors were all the big names – Dentsu, Hakuhodo, McCann.  They offered campaigns centering on TV ad work, usually celebrities.   

My approach involved a lot of research into the French bottled water industry, emerging trends in Japan and elsewhere.  I concluded that TV ads could come later.  I didn’t offer any TV advertising at all, arguing that the money could be more effectively used on other publicity tools, targeting specific demographics.   In the beginning, you needed to mobilize what are now called “influencers” – the young people who embrace trends and drive them. I argued you need what I call "virality".  You didn't  need to waste money on celebrities to establish French water as “cool”.  It’s French. It’s cool by definition-- and relatively easy to make go viral.

 Sometimes less if more.  Of course, we won.  

The French companies themselves still don’t put up money for TV ad work here.  They let their distributors do that. 

TV ads can achieve "virality".  Look at the Internet.  Certain companies produce TV commercials that are always getting impressive hits on YouTube.  BMW, Benz, Audi, for example
They do so by sheer creative excellence and a level of originality that is hard for competitors to match.

You can no longer consider TV commercials just by themselves.   In the age of multiplatform media, commercial content cannot be successful unless it can be ported to digital media --something of a challenge – because digital media today allows more choice than TV used to, once upon a time.

Yes, fast forward is a thing.  And nobody watches a YouTube commercial longer than 4 seconds unless it is interesting  In fact, the boring ones are just "negative" advertising.  Why piss off potential customers?  

Commercial work must be both entertaining and art.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

You Are The Enemy

Trump won?

No,  Hillary lost.  

If Sanders had run, it would be President Sanders now.

But don’t blame Trump or the GOP  -- blame the Democratic Party and the Media –and -- especially -- the soft, over-educated, under-informed, uncritical Middle of America, with its flaccid, bourgeois disdain for others that do not enjoy its privileges.   These are the people that gave you eight years of regressive Obama policy and offered more of the same under Hillary, with an extra dash of war.

These are people who think  they are liberal -- when they are just lazy.

Here are some headlines from Huffington Post immediately after.  Huff and puff...


Millions To Lose Insurance

America Has ‘Jumped Off A Constitutional Cliff

An American Tragedy

Probably Looking At Global Recession With No End In Sight

Trump Beat The Press, And That Is Very Scary

Yup, Trump is going to color the White House Orange.  Satan has taken over Heaven.  And the angels are worried they might have to get a job – on Earth!

The Media is predictably doubling down on its mistakes – not reporting facts, of course   – just opining and whining.  They blame the “deplorables” for voting from the gut --rather than as directed from above, by their betters with the college degrees from Princeton. They blame Trump.  He lied his way to power they say. 

He is a racist, a misogynist, a fascist, a blowhard, a jerk, a pussy grabber, and he has bad hair.  He is also now President of these United States.  

But where is the criticism of the Democratic establishment, of Hillary herself, of Obama?     Blame is useful if it identifies who was wrong and what was wrong – so we can avoid such mistakes in the future.  But all I see are excuses... and can Michelle Obama run in 2020?   Same old, same old.

Naturally,  the Media will not take any responsibility for losing the trust of the American people – 70% or so think that the evening news is propaganda. 

Nor will Hillary take responsibility for putting personal pride and ambition above the common good.

The Media have been proven corrupt.  Just as Hillary and Obama and the liberal agenda has been proven corrupt.

The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves.

Other political leaders in other countries remarked  on the election.  Only Jeremy Corbyn seemed to get it right:

“Trump’s election is an unmistakable rejection of a political establishment and an economic system that simply isn’t working for most people. It is one that has delivered escalating inequality and stagnating or falling living standards for the majority, both in the US and Britain.”

Corbyn has a program to fix the “system”.   You probably haven’t heard about it.  Because the Media does not report…well… information.   Jill Klein has a program too.  And even Ralph Nader has ideas.  You haven't heard about those ideas either, have you?   No, of course, not.    Americans have never really wanted change, not real change.    

Why is the Media so pissed?   Why is the upper middle class so pissed. Because the “system” that Corbyn talks about -- the one that isn’t working for most people --was working for them.  And now they fear that Trump will somehow gum up the works.

70% of Americans think that the Media lies.  It does.  These people think that the Media is a cabal operating as a front for Wall Street and Deep Government cabals.  It is.

Trump is clearly not the answer -- if really the Lesser Evil. He is not going to take on the neoliberal capitalist system  … because he’s a capitalist.
Fear not. The King is Dead.  Long live the King. 

But now with the lines at least more clearly drawn, there is huge danger -- not from the Right wing crazies but from Liberal Normopaths. 

 As Richard Moser writes
....the scapegoating and fear mongering the Democrats are so fond of have made people less likely to resist the system. Who wants to be blamed and shamed for months and years of activism? Nice job dumbasses.

The other, equally dangerous measure of mendacity will be the degree to which the Democrats capitulate to Trump. Judging by Obama’s addiction to serial compromise with the uncompromising Republicans, the Democrats may well move yet again to the right; ever closer to Trump. Remember that the rise of the Clinton machine and the “third way” Democrats in the 1990s was an accommodation to the “Reagan Revolution.”

Do not fear Trump.  With Moser and Jonathan Cook, fear the Liberal Reaction,

Trump isn’t the antithesis of liberal America. You liberals created him. You unleashed this monster. It is you in the mirror. You stayed silent, you took no stand while your country was stolen from you. In fact, you did worse: you enthusiastically voted time after time for those who did the stealing.
Now the path is clear and the route fast. The precipice is ahead, and American liberals are firmly in the driving seat

Yup, you are heading for the cliff.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Will Heaven Fall?

I told you so!

The Media lied.  It's a closer race than anyone expected.  

Heaven may fall.