Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Why AdKeeper’s A Keeper

Scott Kurnit, Founder of AdKeeper, recently raised $35 million in a Series B round of financing.

The question is, is AdKeeper a keeper?

My vote is yes. I believe that people will keep ads to watch later on their time.

Kurnit calls it introducing a level of respect into advertising. Good word – respect. Seldom used in advertising circles.

I would imagine that the consensus is that the early ads that people keep will be for discounts and bargains. I disagree. I think people will keep ads for products that they themselves are thinking of purchasing in the near future. This will include cars, appliances, high-ticket items.

It has always my contention that people aren’t skipping commercials, they’re skipping interruptions to their program. Those interruptions just happen to be commercials.

Give consumers a chance to watch commercials on their own time, and they will. Not all commercials, mind you. But commercials in which they have an interest in the product or brand or category. In other words, categories in which they are further down the purchase funnel.

The beauty of AdKeeper is that it understands and honors the fact that the viewer is in control. Kurnit’s ahead of the pack in respecting the consumer.

Where I’m a little disappointed in Kurnit is in the way he says he will charge for AdKeeper – CPM or CPC. Kurnit must know that both of these methods are antiquated at best and that new monetization models based on how long people choose to be engaged in a commercial rather than how many are exposed to the commercial will be necessary in the future.

Look at it this way. If people keep a commercial to watch later, they must be interested in the category or brand. Is it not then the job of the creative to engage that person? If the commercial is sixty seconds, is it not then the agency’s job to engage them for the full sixty seconds?

These are, after all, people who have indicated interest. In other words they have self-selected the commercial.

Agencies that engage consumers better than others should be paid better than others. This is where I see Kurnit turning the game upside down. You see, he has a chance to monetize creative, not just media.

And, if he does that, well then, he should earn everyone’s respect.

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