Commercials make the world go round"¦or at least the corporate world. However, with the advent of digital video recorders, which allow users to fast forward through advertisements, and satellite radio, which eliminate ads all together, consumers can now enjoy their media commercial free. This is a very frightening prospect if you are in the advertising field or if you are a company spending big bucks to bombard consumers with your message. So what can be done about this new entertainment reality? Just make commercials something consumers want to watch instead of something they have to watch. This sounds like a difficult task, but it is actually much easier than it appears.
Websites such as clipland.com, adforum.com, and ifilm.com allow users to watch television commercials from around the world from the comfort and convenience of their own computers. These sites allow users to easily search for commercials, rate ads, and even share them with others. Presented as just another funny video clip, rather than as an advertisement, online commercials are gaining in popularity. In June, more than 50,000 people visited clipland.com and over 2 million people surfed the wildly popular ifilm.com. And while I am definitely a person who fast-forwards through commercials on television, I was sucked into these websites for longer than I would like to admit. One retro commercial I found incredibly funny is a satirical infomercial for Slice featuring Phil Hartman. Check it out here.
Debra Miller Arbesman is senior associate, retailer and consumer products at Compete, a Kantar Media company that helps brands improve their marketing based on the online behavior of millions of consumers.