Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Branding By The Numbers?

In 1999, a 19-year-old named Shawn Fanning created a software program that changed the way the world bought and listened to music: Napster. It allowed people all over the world to share mp3 music files for free. No more buying $17 CD’s. A simple key-word search and a click to download was the extent of the process. Getting music had never been easier, and while the musicians weren’t getting a dime, everyone was listening to their music. The government and the music industry together put a ban on this raw innovation, but since then, we have fine tuned it and found ways to share new, old, rare, and popular music that benefit the people and the artists.

It looks as though Nick Grouf and David Waxman are changing the way we make commercials. They created a revolutionary start-up called Spot Runner that makes 30-second spots affordable for any size marketer. Prices start at $499 for the making of the ad, plus $10-$100 for the time slot.

How is it so cheap?

Spot Runner works with independent videographers and keeps a library of images and scenes from thousands of professionally produced tv commercials with graphics, music, and photography. The marketer would browse the library and select an ad template that best suits their company. If you want to customize your ad, look to spend an extra $99-$600, then pick the channels you want it to air on!

This innovation is putting people in business, helping them increase sales, and share their brand. Take the example of a Santa Barbara surf shop. They spent $3000 on a semi-customized commercial that aired 432 times. “I still laugh when I think about how easy and affordable it was,” said owner Terri Merrick. They doubled expected retail sales for the final 3 months of 2005.

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