One of my favorite blogs in the blog-o-sphere is written by Bob Hoffman, CEO of Hoffman/Lewis Advertising in San Francisco and St. Louis. The Ad Contrarian has become a daily read for me and I thank Bob for his wonderful, down to earth insights on anything advertising.

The following is a current post on Bob's blog. I encourage you to read it and occasionally drop by his blog .... you'll become addicted.

"The advertising industry is so intent on pumping up (some might say pimping up) web and mobile video, they can't even see the real world anymore.

Nielsen's "Three Screen Report" (which reports on TV, web, and mobile screen usage) for the first quarter of 2010 has some astounding data about viewing habits. But you'd never know it from reading their conclusions.

Here are the facts I found compelling.

1. While time spent with TV increased by 1.3% compared to the same quarter last year, time on the internet dropped by 10 times that amount.

2. Compared to Q1 last year, TV viewing grew by 2 hours per month, while watching video on the internet grew by 11 minutes per month.

3. DVR viewers fast forwarded through 3% fewer spots compared to Q1 a year ago.

4. The number of people watching TV and using a laptop simultaneously dropped by almost 5% compared to last year.

5. Video viewing on the internet continues to be less than 1% of all viewing.

6. Mobile viewing of video is essentially a non-factor, constituting about 2/10 of 1% of total viewing.
Meanwhile, here are the "Key Conclusions" Nielsen draws:
1. While mobile subscribers watching video on a mobile phone is (sic) still only a small fraction of the audience, the year-over-year growth is a notable 51.2%

2. Over half (55%) of the mobile video audience is aged 25-49, not teens as some might think

3. Simultaneous usage of television and PC, while down year-over-year in March, remains fairly constant.
Two of the "key conclusions" revolve around mobile viewing, which is not even a pimple on the ass of total viewing. No "key conclusions" about the amazing, continuing dominance of television. Nothing about the bewildering drop in internet viewing (can you imagine the hysteria and death knells if time spent with TV dropped 13% in one year!)

To me it is painfully obvious that the marketing and advertising industries have so thoroughly bought into the "narrative" of the power of web and mobile video -- and are so eager to find justification for that narrative -- that they can't even interpret their own numbers sensibly. "

Thanks Bob!


Every so often I come across a song that fits perfectly for a given occasion ... and has nothing to do with the world of advertising.

Although Father's day just past us last Sunday, these lyrics, put to music, best describes the love between father and son.

"The Riddle"

There was a man back in '95
Whose heart ran out of summers
But before he died, I asked him

Wait, what's the sense in life
Come over me, Come over me

He said,

Son why you got to sing that tune
Catch a Dylan song or some eclipse of the moon
Let an angel swing and make you swoon
Then you will see... You will see

Then he said,

Here's a riddle for you
Find the Answer
There's a reason for the world
You and I...

Picked up my kid from school today

Did you learn anything cause in the world today
You can't live in a castle far away
Now talk to me, come talk to me

He said,

Dad I'm big but we're smaller than small
In the scheme of things, well we're nothing at all
Still every mother's child sings a lonely song
So play with me, come play with me

And Hey Dad
Here's a riddle for you
Find the Answer
There's a reason for the world
You and I...

I said,

Son for all I've told you
When you get right down to the
Reason for the world...
Who am I?

There are secrets that we still have left to find
There have been mysteries from the beginning of time
There are answers we're not wise enough to see

He said... You looking for a clue I Love You free...

The batter swings and the summer flies
As I look into my angel's eyes
A song plays on while the moon is high over me
Something comes over me

I guess we're big and I guess we're small
If you think about it man you know we got it all
Cause we're all we got on this bouncing ball
And I love you free
I love you freely

Here's a riddle for you
Find the Answer
There's a reason for the world
You and I...

[Thanks to for finding the lyrics]
[Thanks to Lauren ( for these lyrics]

[Thanks to, Julia for correcting these lyrics]

Socialising Johannesburg

The following from friends at PSFK on the use of digital outdoor-scapes....

Nike’s Write The Future campaign is taking an innovative approach by merging social media and World Cup activities to forge a truly interactive experience. Fans can submit a 57-character inspirational message through Facebook, Twitter, Mxitt (a South African social network), and QQ (a Chinese social network) and choose an accompanying picture of their favorite soccer player to have it headlined on the Life Center, one of Johannesburg’s largest skyscrapers.

One hundred fan-generated headlines are selected each night to be displayed on Africa’s largest interactive LED screen. Measuring 44 meters high by 42 meters wide and hoisted 30 stories high, it displays fan messages for the entire city to read and be inspired by. When a message is chosen and displayed, the fan receives a personalized notification with a picture of the headline and the accompanying animation of their favorite soccer player.

Several years ago the same strategy was utilized by Gateway for a digital billboard in Times Square.

Watch a video about the campaign below and the Times Square photo that precedes it.


As digital publishers came together at a panel hosted by OMMA's PUBLISH conference today, trying to desperately figure out how to migrate to a digital landscape, I could not help but wonder.

What if offline publishing properties that are both non-native to the online environment and not time sensitive never migrated to the online world. Would they be better off today from a revenue perspective?

For those publishers that did make the leap (and made many mistakes along the way) do they regret the move? Chances are they would not admit they would "go back to the future".

The delicate balance between the reader and his/her engagement with a publication is likely not interrupted by the absence of a digital version. Many pubs missed the benefit they provide their offline readers .... the benefit of an exclusive interaction that is not available online. Unfortunately they followed the crowd.

This theory would not hold for news sites that are time sensitive. The internet created a "want it now, want it fast" culture that dictates the need for speed. They belong online .... as do native digital brands the likes of eBay, Monster, Huffington Post and Facebook.

As the traditional publishers scrambled to "go digital" with no vision for a sound business model, they gave away their content and are now waging an epic battle for their survival.

Comments welcome.


Samsung, Sony and LG are in the throws of a cut-throat battle for the lead position on the introduction and launch of 3DTV sets in the U.S. market.

In a brilliant (or lucky) move by Samsung's ad agency, Leo Burnett, , they secured the rights to the music track that will likely become the hit song of the summer of 2010, running the catchy and addictive tune across the Samsung product line.

The song? Soul Sister by the artist Train. If you don't recall the title, watch and/or listen to one of the commercials, the music video or the music widget below.

Here's the rub. The song and the artist fall under the Sony Music Columbia record label. So.... why would Samsung allow its agency to subsidize the royalty coffers of its nemesis and continue to create buzz around the song through the summer?

While this isn't the first time Samsung has teamed up with Sony for the launch of new products (the launch of LCD sets was a cooperative effort), was this an "ooops" by Leo Burnett or just a smart move?

And, was (is) Samsung aware?


McDonald's has launched a new ad campaign in France that aims to celebrate the diversity of its customers. One of the spots, featuring an interaction between a father and his gay teenage son, is gathering a lot of attention online...

The campaign, from BETC Euro RSCG in Paris, sees the brand move away from its usual focus on the traditional family set-up to recognizing a wider clientele.

Pro family groups are now mobilizing to publicize McDonlad's extreme support of "the deviant moral lifestyle of homosexuals and transgenders".

Let My Open Kimono readers know how you feel about McDonald's niche positioning after viewing the video that follows. Voting is anonymous.