Another great blogad (and lots of stupid ones coming)
Tuesday, May 3rd, 2005
Another great blogad to consider as you build your own: by Vivavi.com. This ad is a round peg for a round hole. The guy buying the ads wrote to say “we’re very pleased” with the clickthru and that Vivavi’s “contemporary, ‘green’ products cater to a lifestyle-driven, issues-oriented consumer, which makes the blogosphere an ideal place to hear about Vivavi.”
I got a huge chuckle today when I read that a new Forrester research study finds 64% of companies planning to advertise on blogs. (via Mr. Barnako.)
Ha. Ho. Hee. From what I’ve seen, 93% of those companies still don’t have an actual clue what a blog is and, of the remaining 7% (ie 4.2 of the total), only .01% actually understand why blog audiences are fundamentally different from the audiences you can buy from MSNBC for 10 cent CPMs or Google for 25 cent clickthrus.
Compared with those mass market audiences, blog readers are more finicky and less likely to click. They are more likely to complain or to deride an advertiser’s product. Like an antique violin, they are harder to play, harder to keep in tune.
So if that 64% “gimme some of them blog things!” advertisers factoid is within a factor of 100 of being accurate, there are going to be millions of square pegs chasing round holes in coming months.
And shortly thereafter, there’ll be as many bitter “advertising on blogs sux!” stories. You’ll see a tremendous backlash of “I tried to advertise my mobile home business and ended up with $47 CPCs” or “People laughed at the movie our agency advertised, now the client is mad, please give us our money back ASAP” stories.
We’ve now done this three years three years, seen thousands of ads and talked with hundreds of advertisers, from the biggest to the smallest. There are, by my count, still fewer than a dozen advertisers in America, out of the hundreds currently advertising on blogs, who really understand why and how to communicate in the blogosphere. Most of these folks are independent companies outside the big agency pipeline, the pipeline that so efficiently dilutes interesting products and ideas into least common-denominator cookie-cutter ads, ads that fail miserably to connect with America’s most sophisticated, pugnacious thinkers.
As I said, the coming year is going to be mighty amusing. Gee, maybe the backlash will go so mainstream that Business Week’s cover will detail the “Blog bubble: how we all drank the coolaid and got a stomach ache.” And all the Rosie Ruizes will head home to the showers.
At which point, a couple of thousand patient and ever-iterating advertisers will actually understand this stuff. And then real fun will begin.