Blipverts for 2016. Fast Forward Marketing

In the 1987 TV series Max Headroom, which apparently took place 20 minutes into the future, a lot of technology was displayed. One of the neat idea that stucjk with me over the years was the “Blipverts”.  These were a new format TV commercial on Network 23 that lasted 3 seconds.

Over the years, I’ve seen broadcast commercials try shorter formats and radio has done so as well.  60 second commercials are almost gone from our view, and a lot more 15 second spots are common. Producers are aware that a vast majority of television watchers no longer watch shows live, and commercial breaks are often ignored or fast forwarded by.

Today I noticed an interesting concept that caught my eye while fast forwarding past the middle commercial break on a show I was watching. The middle break is often the longest, containing more commercials than the others. I noticed two commercials employing something new. The entire commercial spot had a banner, much like me may see on a computer command bar. A sold black line across the top of the screen that contained the commercial name and some vitals. The regular TV spot played below it.

This had the outstanding effect of showing up clearly while fast forwarding by. In the first case it was the name of a movie. The commercial content itself was the traditional COMING SOON trailer, but while watching on an increased speed, I might very well have missed the movie name. This way, I saw the name for the whole duration of the forwarding.  It occurred to me that I was watching, in effect, a 3 second commercial. A Blipverts for today’s generation.

A 30 second commercial, fast forwarded, perhaps a little longer than 3 seconds, but I have 3 speeds I could use to move on. Even at the fastest speed, which traditionally cuts huge chunks out if the video as it displays only clips as it moves forward digitally, I would still have seen at least 3 seconds of a 30 second spot.  All of them containing the vital commercial message.  

I paused and blogged.  This is a very smart move. A creative way to make commercials that function for the regular watchers and the impatient ones. Many commercials try to get me to watch by creating mini stories, or mystery or blizzard imagery that should slow me down and make me watch, but all too often the brand or slogan or logo of a commercial is only displayed or spoken at the very end. WIth this new technology, it wouldn’t matter. I’d always see the web address our brand or message, even when speeding by at the maximum ignore speed.

I applaud the marketing genius. I hope they were paid well, not just for a single commercial, but for a whole new idea that could insure more eyes on the message.

I have to wonder if he or she  was a Max Headroom fan.

I’m obsessive about not being OCD

When I talk about being obsessive, people tend to jump to the conclusion I mean Obsessive-compulsive (OCD) and quickly correct them. Recently, I started to reevaluate whether I am OCD or not, because the more I obsess over it, the more the lines become blurred. 

The photograph above shows my obsessive collection of the center cardboard from every toilet paper roll I’ve used since I moved here almost 3 years ago. It is an OCD style ritual, but I don’t need them to be in any straight order. I think its possible my brain is rebelling against OCD in an ironic way.

Like all mental illness, every brain is different and the diagnosis comes from somebody who just counts enough symptoms to say yes. 

I am more obsessed over things in my brain than the TV style that needs me to touch the doorknob 4 times before I leave, but I do suffer the internal agitation when I am forced to skip one if my rituals in much the same way.

As a simple example, if the fabric chain Fabricland is seen or mentioned, I must sing its jingle. It’s a simple enough routine a lot if people share, but inside my brain, I’ll actually be bothered fir quite some time if I don’t. Even as I write this, I am almost obligated to sing it. 

FAAA BRICK LAND, Fabricland! 

There are many other little rituals I follow in my daily life that I did not even notice until a friend told me I was OCD. 

I’m not OCD I barked. I’m just obsessive! 

Then again, I remember when my very first therapist told me;  A.D.D isn’t your problem Jeff , you’re obsessive.

It sure surprised me, until I had some time to obsess over how obsessive I actually am.