Monday, September 13, 2010

You're annoying me.

About a year or so ago I began seeing online ads (Mac vs. PC) on The New York Times' site that dominated the screen. The units ran basically the width and depth of the Times' homepage and were very intrusive.

But because they were from Apple and I'm used to liking what Apple does, I didn't mind too much. I turned on the volume and watched.

Of late a few other companies have taken to buying the same media. Every day, or nearly so, they take over my homepage and stop me from seeing and reading what I want. Mercedes had a unit. Xerox. A while ago, BMW. I am annoyed.

The point that Apple gets and most other don't is simple. You need permission to be an asshole or people resent you.

Apple has earned the right to be intrusive. Their legacy of 30 years of intelligent, informative, useful and entertaining commercials have allowed them to interrupt my newspaper reading. Everyone else who has taken this space has just sucked out loud.

There's an equation here that along the way has been lost. Advertising is an interruption. If you don't make that interruption worthwhile to the viewer, you just piss them off. It really is that simple.

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