Not the Short End of the Stick5 Mar, 2010 By: Bridget McCrea Response
Short-form DRTV integrates well with marketers’ Web efforts and continues to reign as a popular choice for brand advertisers.
Behind the Wheel
Few would argue the effectiveness of the Web for information delivery and viral marketing, both of which can significantly boost any short-form DRTV campaign. The medium is so popular, in fact, that over the past few years it’s become cluttered by millions of companies looking for a piece of the Internet advertising pie.
That clutter isn’t always easy to cut through, even for savvy marketers that are using well-thought-out, integrated campaigns. “Everything we do is posted online, somewhere,” says Atomic Direct’s Doug Garnett. “But there’s still no effective means for driving viewership of those spots.”
Even when you do try to drive viewership online, Garnett adds, there’s very little control. “One of our clients put spots on the Los Angeles Times Web site, and none of us (our company, or the client) was ever able to see the advertisements.” That’s because the newspaper used random control to select when to show the ads, and to decide which clip to pre-roll.
“Imagine how much Web browsing we’d have to do to view the client spot,” Garnett says. “What impact did the Internet spots have? Nearly none.”
That unpredictable nature of Internet advertising is just one reason why DRTV continues to serve as an effective “driver.” By helping to point consumers in the right direction (of a Web site, a retail store or a call center, for example), the medium is gaining popularity among Internet-only advertisers.
“We’re seeing an influx of online companies that see how DRTV can drive their business,” says Garnett, who points to GoToMyMeeting.com as one online firm that’s been running DRTV short-form successfully in recent months.
“Companies know they can only grow so much with an ‘all-online’ strategy,” says Garnett, “so they’re going offline to encapsulate their core messages in a very effective manner.”
2010 Cost of Spot Production
The approximate costs of a 60-second spot compared to 2009 numbers. The figures are based on interviews with spot producers working from budget to high-end shows, with royalty estimates included for the former. (Note: every show is different, and producers range in scope from low-budget firms to the high-end companies that work primarily with brand marketers. Every DRTV commercial comes with its own requirements and challenges, and there is no “one-size-fits-all” cost estimate for short-form spots.)