Picture a scenario in which you have a popular product that is in high demand. Any person with a marketing degree or basic business background would do everything within their power to culvitate that product brand and extend the popularity and dominance of it. Unfortunately for many of us that enjoy television from time to time the major network executives appear to have misunderstood this valuable lesson.
It was only a few years ago that ABC started the nonsense by taking a popular show in NYPD Blue and putting it on a multi-month hiatus only to bring it back after winter ended. The net result was a loss of audience as viewers got confused or just lost general interest. It reminded me a lot of what a major soft drink manufacturer tried to do in telling consumers how they wanted to behave. You will all remember the brightly colored bottles on store shelves that were gradually replaced by the "classic" version of the soda. NYPD eventually ended up off the air even as some of the greatest episodes were being produced. That same network continues to ruin shows that if given the chance may well have the success of classics such as Lost. Instead of working to extend the brand and allow consumers to get into an established pattern of consumption they continue attempt to tell us how we want to view their product. Anywhere north of about the 38th parallel is busy shoveling or being cold in December and January. It is a great time of the year to cuddle up by a fire or with your family and watch television. Unfortunately we are bombarded with repeats during that time or worse the dreaded middle of the season launches.
There is a lesson to be learned in all of this and in the next day or two we will tie this back to the promotional products industry which is suffering right now from major product shortages. Part of that is due to major increases in business since last year but a good part of it is the same poor decision making that plagues the networks. Give your customers what they demonstrate they want and more importantly give them time to determine whether or not they actually want your product or service. If interest is shown continue a consistent approach and avoid the random and unsuccesful marketing strategies that continue to make failures out of what would be successful shows. With news that Flash Foward is likely to be cancelled and with V struggling the long term guaranteed method of ruining ratings by boring customers for months at a time has struck again.
Economic news was wobbly at best yet we continue to see fuel prices accelerate northward. Astounding that the major media outlets have ignored what was one of the warmest winters in recent memory over a good majority of the USA and instead continued to tow the line for the major oil companies. Our economy will pay a steep price later this year. We have talked about keeping your message cool and that is all that much more important as we head into the buying season where picnic items are important. The same unfortunate marketing strategy was employed by Congress as we discussed in Proper Promotional Could Help Health Care Reform and in a few months they too will see there are consequences to not marketing a product properly.