Opinion

How media in 2012 was like Mad Monday

Peter MillerIn this guest post, AdStream’s Peter Miller argues that the public are ready to spend if advertisers give them reasons to.

The scene I am surveying right now resembles a Rugby League Mad Monday event. The newspapers started the year poorly and have and continue to cough and splutter. TV is flat. Magazines have been hammered. Radio has gone really well. Cinema has gone mental; Outdoor continues to go well and Digital has slowed to normal double digit growth.

It all adds up to slightly wonky flat. As a good media mate of mine declared, “Pete, flat’s the new black”.

Given that marketers rarely predict their own conservatism, this suggests that there are large bags of un-spent cash weighing heavily in the pockets of CMOs all over the country.

These cashed up marketers must be simply desperate for a decent sales pitch and an ounce of hope.

Frankly, just as Americans must have been bored rigid by the relentless presidential campaigning, I reckon consumers are sick to death of saving money and being miserable.

Click Frenzy, which was preceded by a wall of PR sound, rather proves the point doesn’t it? I mean the nerds forgot to talk to the sale muggles and it got smashed and tanked thus pissing off millions of punters. Not good. And now everyone hates them. Also not good. But why?

Because it got hammered by consumers willing to get down and spend.

Clearly what consumers need is inspirational, vivid, and entertaining campaigns with some real media dollars behind them that will gee ‘em into raiding the money jar.

Some leadership by our political leaders would also help. Julia could buy a fabulous new Bermuda jacket and set the economy going one sleeve at a time. Tony could shock the nation by acquiring some lairy boardies and for a moment at least, be a bit positive. The last time I saw Tony upbeat was in the immediate aftermath of making Sydney University a fun free zone.

They are both being entirely outshone in the outshining department by our media agency leaders, who, praise the Lord, are almost universally picking an upswing in advertising spend in the New Year, even if we have to wait to April for it.

  • Peter Miller is the managing director of AdStream
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