Have you noticed a change in the way politicians speak to us the public ?
Have you noticed the difference in the type of TV shows being made ?
Or have you been stopped by the don’t you worry about that attitude when you’ve asked for more details before making a purchase?
Don’t know what I mean? Heres an example :-
I was recently approached by a towns local newspaper I’ve advertised with before.
The last advertisement was some two years ago. I haven’t had much of a need in that particular town for awhile simply because of word of mouth and some networking.
But they apparently had employed a new salesman or simply going through old leads and hitting them up for more dollars, anyway they phoned, wanted me to take out an ad on the third page at $x every second week.
When they phoned I was at a clients and pretty much well flat out behind a desk so I asked them to ring me back later that day at a specific time.
Well naturally they didn’t but chose instead to ring the next morning, again while I’m working.
Yes I normally have someone else answer the phone but I must have made the mistake of handing out my personal contact number and not the work one when I last advertised.
So this time around I asked them to email me the details and to include reasons I should do this thing.
It confused the sales guy, I ended up making the point really simple – In the email explain why this ad would be good for my business – the concept still sounding foreign to him the sales guy says sure no problems.
Any way I get back to the computer about 7 that night and going through emails get to the one from the sales guy at the paper.
Asides from telling me the dollar amount, size of the ad, sales guy of the year has decided that the best answer to my question was a short sentence stating that I should advertise cause people would see my ad.
Well asides from that kinda of thing just annoying the hell out of me, cause it isn’t what I asked for, and the fact I had a really long day I wrote back a nice little email to the guy.
I started by thanking him for the details about pricing, but added I needed to know:-
Demographics – who buys the paper on that particular day, average age, income, etc and if they could break it down into detailed areas.
I then asked if the paper was audited, so how many people actually get the paper.
Time of delivery as well – Afternoon delivery is kinda pointless if I want a one day sale or something.
I then asked what they did if it was raining and how that affected delivery and do they change their delivery method – no point advertising if the thing gets stuck in a letter box and soaked and ends up in a sodden mess in the recycling.
I then, for the hell of it, asked for details on ad position, IE above or below the fold, top left or top right etc etc.
Well I actually got a response bright and early the next day.
The response was polite but pretty much along the lines of, the ad is this much, it appears on page 3 and you have the until this time to let us know.
It was the second to last line that actually got my attention, and it went
Anyone else feel that was a little arrogant ? I AM their market and they really didn’t seem to get me at all.
Well that actually got me somewhat, well pissed.
My Business, My Brand is known by me, I know it better then anyone else. And if I want to know how MY brand, MY business is going to be presented in a advertisement that you want me to pay money for, then you better be able to answer my questions.
This treating of people as simple, naive or even stupid is a huge turn off.
To get business you need more then just a product, even if that product is sold as the only viable option in that particular market, that business needs to be able to explain why people need to use it and what benefits they receive for the dollars.
The whole playing to the lowest common denominator, is not good business sense.
It isn’t good full stop.
It tells people and businesses that it okay not to try, that it okay NOT to strive to be the best in your field.
It also tries to remove the control from the people who should have it and place it in the hands of a small minority who think they know best.
Who would you rather have control over your business brand, You or Brad from Sales ?
People tend to let others make their minds up for them. They are swayed by the ease of the thing rather then the thing.
Instead of looking at the value they look at the cost.
Or worse still allow themselves to be conned, bullied or frightened into accepting something with out really understanding the facts or the problem.
I know I rather make my own choices rather then letting someone else do it for me.
Then at the very least they are my mistakes.
I’m not sure if this is something other techs have to deal with alot but it comes up fairly regular in my day to day job.
People, normal and otherwise law abiding people downloading the latest TV show from over seas.
They aren’t selling them or passing them around or even keeping them in most cases.
Wondering how come I know when it is something that is not usually discussed ?
Thats easy, I repair the computers, I see what they have installed and I clean up the mess when they download something that is malicious.
And they ask my advice. Yes thats right I do give advice about downloading.
First piece of advice is
You shouldn’t do it.
But then if they are are just going to keep downloading it I explain some methods on keeping their systems clean and unaffected as possible.
I run through reading comments, reputation and not downloading anything that requires you to run it as a program first.
Its obvious stuff I know, but a lot of people simply search for a title and click on the first or second thing they find. The idea of malicious programs don’t occur and if they do occur it’s assumed their antivirus will take care of it. (I tell you what, theres an article which would cause an issue, my views on different antivirus programs)
Again I don’t condone downloading and the people I’ve met who do movies (strangely its very few compared to TV) tend to buy or even rent a copy when its finally released in Australia.
Then the people who download TV shows tend to delete them after they’ve watched them, they don’t have the HDD space to keep them, even with external drives being cheap, plus they couldn’t be bothered.
Though I have met a few clients who are avid movie collectors, but go through Ebay, Amazon, or other online DVD stores, buy it, get it, rip it to disk and then store the original disc on a shelf, but all available from the DIVX player at will.
Curious as to why I bring this up? I saw a machine dropped into my shop yesterday. The client said their teenage daughter had been downloading music from somewhere (Have to say I am glad the LimeWire network is gone) and instructions where, wipe it all, remove the program and generally clean it up.
But leave the TV folder, the client (50 something male) hadn’t finished a few of the shows but remove anything that was infected.
We had a short discussion about why its so hard to get TV on demand and why it is that shows are so behind in general compared to their American/British counterparts.
He voiced the comment that he (remember he is a 50 something male and he also travels OS for work alot)
is tired of either paying for channels he hardly watches or has to put up with the free to air odd scheduling, delays in bringing new content, and shows running over time.
He also raised an important point as well. How long have their been TV remotes, and who exactly watches ads any more. He said if he is watching TV and an ad comes on he skips channels or hits mute and has been doing so for years, even his kids did the same if they watched at all.
So who would advertise this way now days.
I directed him to a book I read a couple of years ago called ‘Meatball Sundae’ by Seth Godin.
Seths blog page on his Book
Explaining it was a good intro text on the difference the availability of the Internet has had on mass advertising IE TV ads. I also voiced the opinion the content owners are still trying to wrap their head around the way the Internet has changed the world and haven’t quite got it. (movie advertising in a urinal anyone)
Its an interesting point there are so many other ways to get your product noticed by people who are actually interested in it compared to the shotgun approach of TV, Radio and Newspaper why would you waste your money.
Heres a challenge for all you business owners who have been using one of the old media types to get your message seen. Set up a one off phone number, it isn’t difficult takes about 5 minutes or so, and use that in your next ad, and count exactly how many responses you get.
The last newspaper ad I had I did this exact same thing, definitely not worth the cash I spent on the advertising.
How do you think the older media companies should approach the ‘new’ media ?