Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Future of Television Commercials

How common is it for someone to watch a TV show from start to finish and watch the commercials included at the breaks? When people choose to watch TV, I think most people record shows and watch them later where they can fast-forward and bypass the commercials. If not watching via a physical television, people can watch shows and movies online either via a specific network channel or by finding it free online at another site.

My question is, how are the prices advertisers are paying affected by this technology-enabled change? Furthermore, is the current economic condition affecting the amount advertisers are willing to pay in this environment? Another thought to consider is to change the venue of advertising; are companies shifting from commercials on TV to online advertisements that can be more targeted? In this last scenario, advertisers can have better monitoring and data gathering methods.

Researching on the web I have come across a few interesting references:
“Viewers are flocking to Hulu. Since its May launch, Hulu has become one of the top online destinations for videos, drawing more than 22 million unique viewers in November, who spent an average of two hours on the site over the course of the month.” (

“Fan Pages: Fancast, Comcast's Hulu competitor, offers fan groups for TV shows that let users obsess over plot points and share favorite episodes. Powered by social networking site Plaxo, the feature is in beta.” ( With groups like these, companies can be very targeted in their advertisements,

One last idea: I have seen that in other countries a show is broadcasted in its entirety with no breaks and then commercials are reserved for the last few minutes before a new show begins. I realize networks cannot demand as much money this way but with the decline in patience of viewers, is this a possible trend that may arise?

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