Thursday, October 02, 2008

"Originality is the one thing which unoriginal minds cannot feel the use of." John Stuart Mill

"The greatest genius will never be worth much if he pretends to draw exclusively from his own resources. What is genius but the faculty of seizing and turning into account everything that strikes us?" Goethe

"All men's miseries come from their inability to sit quiet and alone." Blaise Pascal

Today's image: The Old Bog Road, Kilkenny Ireland by Edward Dullard. Beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

Pig on the runway - pay radio update: Mel uses a Jedi mind trick when talking with an Ad Age writer. My guess is he probably said something like "These aren't the ratings you're looking for." Andrew Hampp writes "...the biggest hurdle between his company and advertisers is trying to agree on the measurement system that most accurately meets their needs." The dirty little secret here is the ratings for pay radio are already available and they don't look good. In his writing Andrew makes a couple of errors. First, he reports radio billing as "...$6 billion terrestrial radio collectively banks annually" when the actual number is $21+ billion [Source: RAB 2007]. Second, he falls into the trap of thinking subscribers are listeners "One thing Mr. Karmazin can offer advertisers these days is a bigger audience, having more than doubled Sirius' subscriber base to 19.5 million" While it is true that the audience now on sale is certainly bigger we still are not able to get a sense of scale here without the actual numbers.

Let me get back to the subscriber sleight of hand. Perhaps the best way to understand this is to use cable tv as an example. You probably have VH1 on your cable system channel lineup, this means - strictly speaking - you are a VH1 subscriber. You do not count as a member of the VH1 audience until you actually watch the channel. During my days as a cable MSO it was common for networks to pitch us using their hh numbers. Not hh ratings but subs. The truly sly approach was "homes passed" a totally meaningless number. For the purposes of discussing advertising subs don't mean diddly it's the audience that matters.

Mel does manage to again make good copy. He wants to be the Walmart of audio, "...the low-rate provider." He also goes on to say his " response has been phenomenal." Adding that " of my goals has been to dramatically cut back on our direct response." I imagine Mel went shoe shopping after the interview with Andrew. He had to, the shoes worn during the interview surely must have caught fire. Please join me in my personal mission to get Mel on the next round of Dancing with the Stars. Read the entire article Karmazin: Damned if He Does -- and if He Doesn't, here. Closed circuit to Andrew: Next time you're writing an article on audio advertising you'll improve your writing by talking to more than just one exceptionally gifted salesperson.

Tom Webster, new media maven at Edison Media Research will moderate a discussion - Music Royalties and the Future of Webcasting. Monday, Oct 6, 12 noon, Eastern. Get more info here. Very cool, kudos, Tom.

Bonus: Live Web rock star Marc Canter shares his slides. How to build the Open Mesh, here. Very cool, thanks Marc!

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