CAMPAIGN DIARY: I’M ONLY A PUNTER BUT ..

I’m only a punter, but I’m getting heartily sick of constant whining from committees of advertisers and transparently self-interested media buyers about advertising minutage on ITV and about how unfair it is that people prefer the BBC.

I’m only a punter, but I’m getting heartily sick of constant

whining from committees of advertisers and transparently self-interested

media buyers about advertising minutage on ITV and about how unfair it

is that people prefer the BBC.



Do they seriously believe that the effectiveness of ads will not be

compromised when viewers sit through thirty of them an hour? Or that by

putting the odd COI ad for the Green Cross Code on the BBC suddenly

frees up ITV airtime for more important commercials for washing powder

and spot cream?



Precious arguments about ’level playing fields’ and ’advertising by the

back door’ are tirelessly reiterated. Pools companies complain about

Camelot’s free television exposure on the BBC, conveniently forgetting

the years of free advertising they’ve had on Grandstand.



Other advertisers argue that viewers wouldn’t mind ads on the Beeb

because they hate paying the licence fee. They then insist that the BBC

should not behave like a commercial organisation in order to give the

licence payer value for money. The cost of advertising airtime is

spiralling, so we are told. Unlucky. So is petrol.



Advertisers should do what motorists will have to do and use less. Or,

and here’s a completely mad idea - make better ads. They’ll find people

remember them much more quickly, so they don’t have to present them with

it 20 times a day for six months to get a response. Then perhaps - just

perhaps - many of us will find watching ITV a less objection-able

experience.