The radio commercial for a homeopathic remedy, touted as "a scientific breakthrough', instructs to “rub it on your forehead”. This mantra is repeated enough to make you question your ability to comprehend what this commercial is about. Thirty seconds later the commercial closes with “HeadOn …rub it on your forehead”. There is no mention whatsoever of the product’s redeeming value.

What the heck does the product do!

Frustrated, I searched the web to discover it is a headache remedy. Digging a bit deeper, we find that there is no medicinal value in the product’s active ingredient, White Bryony, an herb diluted to one part in 1,000,000,000,000.

You can’t overdose on the product. In fact, you can rub it all over your body with no results … when you apply nothing, nothing happens.

The effect of HeadOn commercials will actually give you a headache!

I would like to know who produced and placed this radio ad (and its sister 10 second TV spot shown here). More importantly, why the FCC allows this misleading dribble to air and why major drug chains stock it.


For the sheer insanity of it all, Folger's agency Saatchi & Saatchi succeeds at doing 5 seconds of product placement in a 90 second commercial.

We are speechless .... and laughing.


Clear Channel's recent announcement to examine the use of one second radio spots, or "blinks", in an effort to provide a means for brand extensions to a limited number of advertisers, clearly calls for a reality check.

Let's investigate a bit into the potential for these listener "blinks" (which, by the way, is more appropriately labeled for the visual experience provided by television or streaming video). There are a host of issues that surface at first blush.

Placement of these sound "bytes" must fit seamlessly into the radio genre of News, Talk or Music --- otherwise both stations and advertisers run the risk of adding clutter to an already cluttered environment.

It is unlikely that rating and pricing structures, given a limited number of potential clients, will generate any new and significant revenue streams for the stations. It is more likely that existing radio budgets will be cannibalized to fund these efforts. How many blinks equal a thirty; a fifteen; a five? Can we all recall when the standard unit for radio was a sixty?

Accountability and tracking of these units, through agency-wide enterprise financial systems, can turn into a nightmare. Agencies are already over-burdened with a deluge of paperwork and Sarbanes Oxley compliance issues.

Let's clear the air, blink three times and pretend this never happened.

Turn to any of the trades and there is no doubt that there will be some article written about News Corp's MySpace.com site. The trades just can't stop chatting it up as the fastest growing social networking site on the net.
I couldn't help but wonder what all the hype was about and became a MySpace "user" (I use the term in an non-addictive sense) about 2 months ago.
Having created a profile, albeit under a false name, I ventured into the twilight zone of MySpace.
I was immediately bombarded by users who wanted to "be my friend". People I did not know nor wanted to know. People who, laughably, had upwards of several thousand "friends" on their profile. Useless banter with no redeeming social value other than curiosity and, dangerously, entrapment. In many cases I found the users to be trumped up imaginary persons often cloaked in the skin of others whose photos were "borrowed". Nothing on the site seemed real to the observing eye.
Browsing through the profiles I was not surprised to find sexually explicit and sometimes disturbing photos. I often worried about the kids who ran into these randomly accessible photos. I worried even more about kids that were underage and easily drawn into conversations with would-be predators.
Shocked at open profiles that suggested "I love kids and often go to playgrounds to just watch them" I decided to abandon the generally unhealthy site.
News Corp has a tiger by the tail .... and if it doesn't do something very quickly to turn this site into a more controlled environment, they run the risk of government scrutiny and intervention.
Frankly, I don't care how profitable this site is. Supporting it with advertising will eventually backfire with enraged parents, schools and communities demanding action.
This is not about free speech or rights under the constitution. It's about social consciousness....not social networking.

The past weekend’s Wall Street Journal pulled the covers back on the hiring dilemma many of the “new era dot-coms” are facing. As forecasts for double digit growth in ad spending continues through the rest of the decade, HR departments must find new ways to keep the pool at least partially full.

Salaries for sales execs with just 5 years of experience, for example, are easily pushing for a base of $150,000 plus bonuses, plus commissions. And VPs leading the charge can command packages upwards of $500,000.

Ad agencies cannot compete with these salaries and can be expected to see a further drain on their tech savvy, digitally focused personnel.

Look to Google as an indicator of the demand. Tap into their career section and you’ll find open calls for upwards of 100 jobs. Multiply that demand by the needs of others in the same space (Yahoo, MSN, eBay) and you can paint a rosy picture for individuals considering a move.

Those who left the field during the dot-com bust have found greener pastures elsewhere and are reluctant to return, while traditional media sales execs have not yet caught up with (nor do many want to) the new surge.

As a result, the bottom layers will be easier to fill while the need for structured and seasoned professionals who may have a better grasp of client needs will fall short of the demand.