Commercial Status Updates

Man using car stereo
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Pretty much the only time I listen to terrestrial radio anymore is when I’m in the car.  Drive time radio, breaking news, and Twins and Vikings games or other sporting events are pretty much the only content that I do not time-shift.

I was listening to ESPN Radio on my way home Saturday because a friend tipped me off that they’d be talking Vikings. I had to endure a tedious succession of innumerable ads while I awaited the Vikings segment.

Maybe it’s just because I’m not used to it anymore, but I’m stunned at how many ads they pack in between actual content. The only reason I did not immediately change the channel is because it was Vikings talk I was waiting for.

So I was an irritated captive audience but it got me to thinking that if I have to endure advertising, why can’t it be advertising in which I have an interest?

I was thinking that it should not be that difficult to create a service that let’s me declare my current commercial interests, sort of a status update for advertising.

I’m thinking it could be an RSS-enabled page where I could list the brands for which I am willing to receive commercial messages as well as the products, industries, or topics for which I currently want advertising.

I could check off, for example, that I’m in the market for a new Jeep Wrangler (because I love to pay through the nose for gas), I’d like coupons from my favorite restaurants, I want to know about any produce sales at my grocery store, and let me know about any business books that hit the bestseller list.

That way, I’d could get information that is useful to me and as a result, I’d pay attention to the ads and act on them far more frequently that if I absorbed those messages in the practically random  way they are distributed now.

With Internet-ready televisions quickly becoming standard at home and GPS-enabled phones and cars becoming standard out of the home, it would be far from a stretch to create such a ping marketing system.

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About David Erickson

David Erickson is principal of e-Strategy Media, a digital marketing consultancy based in Minnesota. David has extensive experience in digital marketing and is often used as an expert source by media and asked to speak on the topic before organizations and to sit on panel discussions.