Book Advertising: Find a Symbiosis Between Broadcast and Broadband Approaches

book vid lit iconSheila Clover-EnglishBook Vid Lit

by Sheila Clover-English

Sheila Clover English, the CEO of Circle of Seven Productions, has been a pioneer
in book video production, marketing and distribution for authors and publishers

Broadcast Advertising:  The Pros & Cons

There’s something good to be said for different marketing endeavors. Companies spend millions of dollars every year for television broadcast advertising. Why? Because broadcast advertising on television takes their ads into the homes of hundreds of thousands or even millions of people. The shear number of potential viewers makes television advertising desirable.

broadcastYou can do national advertising to get in the great number of viewers, so you can go regionally or even locally to be more target specific. There are choices in how you utilize television advertising. You just need to know what your market can bear, who your target audience is and what your budget can get you.

Television advertising has historically been the king player of advertising and where most advertisers spent the majority of their promotional dollars. It is still an effective way to advertise, but advertising has evolved, so the rules of yester-year don’t necessarily apply now.

TiVo and DVRs are the downfall of television advertising as it once was. Commercials were presented to viewers and unless you left the room, you were subjected to them.  Not anymore. Now you can fast forward through those pesky commercials and many people do just that.

Only advertisers with large budgets could afford to pay for television media spots and have their commercials play on TV. Even now, national commercials are very cost prohibitive unless you have a huge marketing budget.

You have no way of knowing how many of those potential viewers actually viewed your commercial whether you played it nationally, regionally or locally. If sales spiked in a region in which your commercial played one could contribute that increase in sales to the television campaign. But, national commercials are harder to pinpoint ROI. Most companies paying the big bucks for a national television campaign are also putting ads in magazines, newspapers, online ads and radio. So, which of these elements is causing an increase (if any) in sales? How do you know that you’re getting what you paid for?

Broadband Advertising:  The Pros & Cons

Utilizing the internet to advertise a product or service has taken a large chunk of marketing dollars. As more and more people turn to the internet for entertainment and information advertisers follow.

There are two main ways to advertise on the internet. There’s direct advertising in which you create a commercial, banner or static ad and pay for placement of that ad. Then there is indirect advertising where viral videos are king, but you can also use blogs, online groups/clubs, social networks and even user-generated news sites. You need to know ahead of time which, direct or indirect advertising, that you want to use for a campaign.

Once you determine what kind of advertising you’ll do, you need your creative and a plan. Where will you distribute your creative? How will you track its effectiveness?

You can track the effectiveness of either a direct or indirect campaign. If you’re paying for placement of an ad you should be given a stats report from whoever you placed the ad with. For example, when I place an ad with USA Today online, they follow up by telling me how many people clicked on the ad. Since the ad is sent out via email I’m told how many people actually opened the email. So, whether or not someone clicked on the ad, I know how many eyes saw it. For indirect ad placement on social sites or with viral video you can see how many people engaged with your ad. If your ad was a blog, you can see how many people read it or commented on it. If it is a viral video you can see how many people watched it, commented on it or shared it.

Another good thing about indirect online advertising is that it is around longer than other types of advertising. So, if your product or service has any time constraints then indirect advertising may not be for you. But, if you have a book coming out that will be on the shelves for a while then indirect advertising is great! Compared to a print ad that will gone in a month or even a day, your online ad will be around for a year or more on whatever social sites you put it on.

There still seems to be a learning curve in how to best utilize broadband for advertising. Privacy issues are now at the forefront of the news as MySpace offers to place ads on MySpace pages according to what that MySpace users watches, blogs about or highlights on their MySpace page. MySpace is accumulating data about how users are using their MySpace site and offering advertising placement according to that usage. The internet has been historically a place where people can come and search for what they want, say what they want and do what they want without worrying about privacy issues.

When ads are put on social sites the company placing the ad there can’t be assured that their ad won’t be placed next to an undesirable video, something that might go against their brand.

People on social sites lie about their demographic information. So you can’t use demographic information to target specific markets, you must use other methods to ferret out what these users really want. MySpace can monitor behaviors of viewers instead of giving out demographic information. Amazon does the same thing in monitoring behaviors and then sending ads to viewers according to what they last purchased, searched for or clicked on.

Be Aware of the Differences

television setsYou can’t really look at broadcast and broadband advertising in the same way.  Broadcast advertising is measured and priced by impressions, the number of people who may potentially see the commercial.  Magazines and newspapers also use this method.  Here you’re going for a greater outreach to a very diverse group of people.  You’re playing the odds. Of one million people who see this commercial, how many will buy the product or service because they saw it on TV?

If you’re looking to build brand awareness, then multiple ads throughout the year to the most people possible is the way to go.  But that’s going to cost, and generally, you get what you pay for most of the time.

Broadband is more about engagement.  How long did the user stay on your site? Did they watch the entire video? Did they comment or send it to a friend? Did they blog about it or put the video on their own site or blog? Broadband is about building and strengthening relationships where broadcast is more of building popularity through shear numbers.

Symbiotic Advertising

Can you have the best of both worlds? Absolutely!  The great thing about the growing popularity of online advertising is that it has caused the cost of broadcast advertising to go down. That and new technology that allows for digital commercials to be made broadcast quality has relieved a lot of boundaries to television advertising. For $1,500 we can get a 30 second commercial played on Lifetime, A & E and SciFi Channel about 200 times throughout the a week. Since we specialize in books we only suggest advertising that first week the book is out if you’re looking to make one of the bestseller lists. But, if you looking to brand yourself you can stretch out your advertising calendar. Again, it goes back to knowing what you want before you get started.

We always put the client’s URL on the end of their commercial. We want people to see that website address. We go for the bigger numbers (popularity) by broadcast advertising, then go for strengthening that relationship by getting those people to the web.

Grouper pic smallIt’s a well known fact that the more someone sees your commercial or the cover of your book the more likely it is that they will retain that information. People are seeing the book on television then seeing it when they log in to MySpace or visit their favorite online site. The great thing about that is that person is sitting there at their computer where they can easily impulse buy. If they see it on TV they may recall it when they walk into the bookstore and see the book in a display or on the shelf. You’re getting the best of both worlds now.

You can go a step further an include a press release online, either paid for like PR Web or TransWorld News or user-generated such as or The people looking for online news may be different from those watching TV or visiting social sites. Your broadband advertising can reach out to a lot of people who are actually looking for what you’re talking about as opposed to someone at home on the sofa who is subjected to your commercial and may or may not care about your topic.

You are always in a better position of power, or control, when people come to you. That’s the beauty of broadband advertising. They already are interested in what you have to say or show. Of course, if you can afford showing your ad to a million people through broadcast advertising, well, who wouldn’t want that?

There’s a time and a place for everything including advertising choices and opportunities. Know your product, your budget, your target audience and your desired outcome. Then, and only then, should you attempt to make your advertisement

Next time we’ll take a look at a case study that utilized both broadcast and broadband to see how that advertising campaign went.  Read more on this topic and leave your own comments.

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