ChasNote

28 August 2005

Japan's TV Ads: TV Ads Not Working

Hiroko Tashiro's piece in the September 5 issue of Business Week (BW's Talk Show section):

"Throughout August, 133 Japanese TV stations are airing commercials to promote the importance of...commercials. Japanese advertisers, like those in the U.S., worry about growing use of digital video recorders, now in 15% of Japan's homes. By letting users skip ads, DVRs have knocked $489 million off the value of commercials to advertisers, says the Nomura Research Institute. To win back advertisers, the National Association of Commercial Broadcasters in Japan named Aug. 28 TV CM (commercial) Day. In one spot, a singer Aya Matsuura works a puppet that says, 'Commercials are fun, aren't they?' adding, 'It's ventriloquism, so of course I'm made to say so.' Viewers, of course, may skip these ads, too."

Is this a joke? Does Japan's NACB think this will turn the tide on commercial skipping, and save those $489 million dollars from migrating to more effective media platforms? I don't know how Japanese media buyers are responding, but I question the wisdom of a month-long broadcast campaign that reminds them how much of their ad budgets are going to waste.

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