Ad people love industry award shows and people working in advertising have a natural affinity for the people who make films, since they often work side-by-side on 30- and 60-second films, also known as commercials. The Oscar Awards are therefore a big deal. Not Super Bowl big, but big nonetheless.
In media buying terms, ABC was seeking between $2 million and $3 million for a 30-second ad slot on Sunday’s broadcast of the glitzy awards ceremony, while CBS got between $5.1 million and $5.3 million for the equivalent in its recent telecast of Super Bowl LIII.
Also, the viewership isn’t quite the same. The most recent Super Bowl drew a crowd of 98.2 million TV viewers, according to Nielsen, while last year’s Oscars attracted 27.4 million – a new low. A new low that still equals 25 million focused viewers—a massive audience by today’s standards.
Commercials of Note
The spots above are good in places, but they are no match for Roma, Black Panther, or some of the other films that won Oscars last night.
Ideas Needed, We’re All Good with Technique
At a time when more viewers have grown accustomed to skipping past commercials with time-shifting technology or not having to encounter them on subscription streaming services like Netflix, Madison Avenue has come under new pressure to devise ads that give consumer more of the content they came to see and less of the annoying, interrupting messages that get in the way of that entertainment.
ABC encouraged sponsors to not only launch new commercials that haven’t been seen ad
infinitum ,but to work to make the ads carry elements of the awards ceremony itself to play off what drew viewers to the broadcast in the first place. “Sparking moments like that adds to the overall viewing experience,” says Jerry Daniello, senior vice president of entertainment brand solutions for Disney Advertising Sales.
A powerful media executive wants better content from his sponsors. I don’t know if that’s precious or perfect.
Are sponsors listening? Are they open to this line of criticism? With Chief Marketing Officer
Veer from the Script, It’ll Do You Good
“The principal mark of genius is not perfection but originality, the opening of new frontiers,” said Arthur Koestler, author of novel Darkness at Noon, an anti-totalitarian work that gained him international fame.
In today’s distraction/attraction multiple screen