The Esquire that goes on sale in October this year is going to have an e-ink front cover and front inner. The cover will animate, and there will be a Ford ad on the inside front. The Ford ad has paid for most of the costs of production - which amounts to a 'few dollars' per copy
The Media Futures conference I went to the other week, reminded me of a little phrase that a planner I used to work with (Abe) said was invaluable. The basic idea is that whenever anyone makes some claim or tries to peddle you a message, the immediate response to this should be 'so what'.
This 'withering rejoinder' as Dr Brian Winston put it, is the acid test for whether any innovation really is likely to change the society it goes into. It is also the thing that every person asks themselves whenever they see your marketing hyperbole.
Use the 'so what?' test next time. You will see it works.
Remember the Chevy Tahoe 'make us a TV ad' campaign that went balls-up? This Youtube link may refresh your memory. As perhaps will this:
Well, now get this for a post-rationalisation from Wired:
The thinking went something like this: Chevrolet is all about being
revolutionary, right? (That's debatable, but since Chevy's tagline is
"An American Revolution!" this is where all discussion starts at its ad
agency.) And if Chevrolet is revolutionary, then its advertising ought
to be, too. Ergo, the Chevy message needed to escape the tightly
controlled, painstakingly monitored, woefully predictable confines of
the 30-second TV spot and roam the online jungle. But everybody's doing
that now. So, Chevy marketers thought, let's take this thing a notch
further – let's have an online contest to see who can create the best
TV ad for the new Tahoe. The wikification of the 30-second spot – what
could be more revolutionary than that?
Sales went up, and maybe they were the fortunate victims of serendipity but to claim they planned it is a bit too much to swallow.
Lost - new to Sky One (owned by Murdoch) is showing the first two episodes of the new series on Myspace (also owned by Murdoch). Not only a good promotional strategy, but one that is going to make good business sense for MySpace too. I wonder how many more Sky shows will be using this strategy?