Tuesday, February 26, 2008

"To be a great champion you must believe you are the best. If you're not, pretend you are." Muhammad Ali

"In a revolution, as in a novel, the most difficult part to invent is the end." Alexis de Tocqueville

"Be a Columbus to whole new continents and worlds within you, opening new channels, not of trade, but of thought." Thoreau

Image: Faster than light by ugglan. Cool shot. Thank you.

Award for record low: Academy Awards post 21.9 rating, 33 share, over 20% lower than last year. No wonder, with few exceptions (to wit: the opening sequence, a few good lines by Jon and the Diablo Cody win) the show was a complete bore.

Pay radio: Latest digits from Mel indicate annual ad revs that are less than one really good FM radio station (e.g., WTMX), sub counts would suggest the sector is looking more and more - as predicted - like HBO without the cool, engaging and high quality original content baggage. Absent the merger these guys are dead. N=1 odds are still 6 to 5 against. Should the deal get approved and closed my guess is they'll be able to hold the combined Christmas party in an elevator. At best a very modest niche player.

CBS broadcast down, outdoor up: Random notes from the call. Q4 results - TV (4%), Radio (10%), same station radio comps (7%). Publishing (4%), Outdoor +9% (domestic). Les says March Madness will generate $21 mil in interactive ad rev this year, up from $10 mil last year, $4 mil in '06 and $250k in '05 the first year of on demand streaming. Keep in mind the first year was a pay model since dropped. CBS Audience Network now over 300 affiliated websites. 20 retrans deals done, smaller and mid-sized MSOs. $186 mil cap ex in '07 to upgrade outdoor to digital. Les says priority #1 is to pay dividends. No affiliate meeting this year. Scatter pricing up north of 30% from upfront. Les says "...pilots are vastly over-rated, it's all about episode twenty not episode one." CSI franchise has brought in over $2 bil. Les feels network prime CPMs will be up in May, feels C3 will help.

Bonus: Stuff White People Like

Thank you very much: Brian McAndrews proclaims the end of days for "the last ad standing." Bravos, Brian!

"...we're not in a recession, we're not going into a recession" Sam Zell via CNBC Squawk

Buzz: Yahoo! Apex & SearchMonkey No real buzz on Yahoo! Buzz, a me-too, perhaps too late. (Sidebar - Jerry says online will be the dominant domestic ad medium - revs - come 2013). Seems to me media sales is 70% relationships and 30% tech. Therefore, my sense is no matter how cool their new app, Jerry and Sue are likely to remain third in a two horse race, unless...

Congrats & cheers: Doug Podell promoted, named Director of Rock Programming, Greater Media, Detroit. Microsoft debuts Engagement Mapping, jumping into the BT game. Glam Media on another round, this one $84.6 mil. Randall Rothenberg, his first advertiser/agency gathering seems to be a total smash!