Sunday, February 01, 2009

Advertising on Internet Video: I Don't Get Not Getting It

I didn't watch last night's Saturday Night Live featuring Steve Martin's umpteen-gillionth hosting appearance. However, I did see that BoingBoing's Xeni Jardin recognized Laser Cats #4 as a Wonderful Thing, complete with the embedded video from Hulu:

It's funny because it's ironic. And meta. And DIGITAL.

The video is a bit of amusing fluff, no big deal. But I'm kind of baffled by this part of Jardin's nota bene (not the Latin abbreviation part -- I looked that up):
"...(nb: I hate that I can't find a version of this short without 30 SECONDS OF ADS preceding the content. NBC still doesn't get it.)"
I don't think a 30-second pre-roll on a 4min 27sec video is particularly onerous (granted, I also don't think pre-rolls are particularly effective, either -- I tend to mute and go to another tab for the duration) but I'm really curious as to what "getting it" would entail. Because, you know, advertisers tend not to care much for the ignorable, non-intrusive, dismissable types of ads that we users like so much.

So, pre-rolls are out. Post-rolls? Overlays? Persistant graphic bug in the corner? Interstitials? Premium accounts? Paid product placement? Throw everything out there without ads and hope to make it up on the back-end through increased DVD sales?

I like free and ad-free stuff, too, but somebody has to pay, somewhere, and there ain't no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution. I don't have the access, acumen, or arrogance to presume what's going on with the Hulu balance sheets, but I do know that what may work for BoingBoing or South Park Studios might not work for Hulu.


Anonymous said...

I saw that too. What the hell does 'get it' mean anyway? Get what exactly?

Joelogon said...

Utma: Ms. Jardin posted a clarifying comment, sort of. Apparently I and others (and especially you) are "crankypants." It doesn't really offer anything concrete to justify such a blanket statement, though I think it has something to do with free ponies.