I want to explore one of the secret dangers of working from home, a real and present danger that no one talks about. The danger is exposure to bad TV, bad commercials, in particular.
If you watch cable news in the middle of the workday, even for a short time during lunch, you’re screwed. Apparently, the viewers are older than the hills and/or out of work. What we know for sure is the commercials that are meant to appeal to them are NOT appealing to humans of any age.
Prepare yourself, if you’re at all sensitive to bad advertising, this is likely to sting…
For viewers who may need help with Medicare, cut-rate car insurance, a new bathtub (installed in just one day!), a reverse mortgage, a “lump sum of cash”, or an ambulance-chasing lawyer, mid-day TV viewing presents the offers, over and over again. Over and over and over again, just in case you miss the toll-free number or web address.
Each of these mid-day offers has a prominent call-to-action. This is transactional TV for people who still use pens to take down toll-free numbers (and their phones to call other people with). No judgment. What I am curious about is why this viewing segment is more receptive to direct TV than others? Do you need hours of Lazychair repose and relentless repetition to open your wallet to the above?
I imagine a much richer creative palette for all marketing to seniors. Some of the senior citizens on the other end of this targeted marketing are people who burned their bras, fought in Vietnam, dropped acid, wore bell bottoms, and so on. The Baby Boomer generation is also the generation holding nearly all of the nation’s wealth cards. So, why the stale creative? Why the self-absorbed “get what you deserve” mentality?
Senior citizens and others watching mid-day TV deserve much better advertising than this. If advertising is a mirror—and it is—the “marketing to seniors mirror” is broken.