Hard to compete with free and quite good?

January 24, 2008

There are some blogs I am reading cause of my „marketing work life“ and usually they have not much to do with things I am writing here … but sometimes they have …

There is one I highly appreciate: The blog of Russell Davies, former Planner for the ad agency Wieden & Kennedy, right from these crazy „Nike guys“. Now Russell is working as consultant in his own „small“ agency  

His blog is great, really inspiring … read it, if you have anything to do with marketing…

…. check his older posts too,… ok …enough advertising for Russell…

A few days ago he wrote some thoughts about the future of advertising in the media and is wondering, if media/advertising is on an attention peak.

Really interesting is this thought about „free“ user generated content like his own blog:

 “And ‘free and quite good’ is really hard for regular commercial media to deal with.  Murdoch can’t compete with ‘free and quite good’. He can’t compete with wikipedia and Craig’s List. The only way to compete with that is ‘expensive and brilliant’ and a) that’s hard and b) difficult to get people to pay for. So in might work in some niches but it won’t work everywhere.It’s a simple equation – there’s a limited amount of attention in the world, if more of it is going to personal, non-commercial, un-advertised-in media, less of it will go to advertising and advertising will shrink.” 

Fewer of our attention will be “disturbed” by advertising, yes I agree, but advertising becomes much more effective in the future. So prices for ads will rise, and the media companies can stay on the same revenue level.But like Russel wrote, the quality / service / value of the (professional) media content must rise, cause of the “free” alternatives.


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