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August 27, 2004


The Final Frontier

I believe I read once in a marketing class that the average American is exposed to 1.6 bazillion marketing impressions every single day. Advertisers have already taken over magazines - I flip through about 90 ad pages in every 100-page US Weekly . They're in the movie theater, with their 20 minutes of pre-movie commercials followed by 90 or so minutes of product placement. They even run banner ads about toenail fungus when I'm just trying to watch Fresh Prince of Bel-Air at the gym. It's enough to make me bang my fists against the television, weeping, "Please, god, just for one minute, don't try to sell me anything!"

But imagine you're not me, and instead a company that spends millions of dollars a year on advertising. It must be maddening to not be able to measure success, to have no idea if customers even notice the images you send out into the world. And it must be doubly maddening to know that there is one final medium, used with aching frequency by your target audience, that you have not been able to advertise on - the cell phone.

Well, Jane magazine is trying to solve that problem for you. Jane's ad sales have been down this past year, so in an attempt to boost revenue the magazine is challenging readers to enter a contest by sending in photographs of the magazine's ad pages. That's right - to win a prize, you must prove that you read the ads by taking pictures of them, with your cameraphone. See how it all fits together? Jane's argument is that readers already exchange cameraphone pictures of clothes and makeup they like, and since magazines are "interactive" (???) anyway, it just takes that interaction one step further.

Jane, I don't pretend to know the mind of teenage girls like you do, but all I can say is, the day I flip open my cell phone and see an ad about toenail fungus I'm coming looking for you.

categories: Business, Media
posted by Emily at 9:51 AM | #