CTV in trouble in this kind-of-not-great economy

January 28, 2009

For those who haven’t got it yet, large media organizations are watching their revenues melt in the harsh sun of the economic slowdown (I’m not even calling it a recession,  for fear that Dan Gardner will write nasty things about me).

In this we’ve-seen-better economy, CTV is having trouble selling their Superbowl ads. Rick Brace is saying sales are “behind where we were last year”. Uh… the Superbowl is this Sunday. Whatever ad time remains is up for a fire sale right now.

CTV is the same network that has to sell bucket-loads of ad time for next year’s Vancouver Olympics. How much advertizing money is that? CTV paid $ 153 million (US) just for the rights and there are significant production costs involved, so they certainly need to sell close to $ 200 million in ads just to break even. They’ll have to do that in the thick of a not-great-but-let’s-not-get-all-panicky economy. How long until they announce the “buy-one-spot-get-two-more-for-free Olympic Games sale”?

As our prime Minister said during the last election, there are bargains out there for those who have money to invest. If you still have an advertizing budget.

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Chinese Olympic fakery sets off media trap

August 13, 2008

The Western media is abuzz with details of how China is working hard to get picture-perfect Olympic Games, even if it means cheating with camera images and slapping the voice of a little girl over the face of another. China is simply pushing one step further the standard gimmicks used by most large shows everywhere, but it doesn’t look good.

Sure, many reporters were actively looking for an opportunity to stick it to Chinese authorities. Some commentaries are dripping with malice and barely-contained contempt (and I haven’t turned the radio on yet).

But my point is this: Chinese authorities had to know many reporters would love nothing more than portray them as a band of old freak-control totalitarian maniacs. And wow, they really went out of their way to provide them with material to illustrate that. They fell into the trap big time.

Good luck to Vancouver in 2010. VANOC and the city will have their own tricky PR issues to deal with…


NBC rolling the dice with Olympics

July 26, 2008

Good text in the Globe this morning about NBC using the Olympics to prove it’s still a strong media force. Interesting how they’re going all-out on several platforms at the same time and throughout monitoring of theit audience.


Canadian flagbearer stumbles

July 24, 2008

Or rather the Canadian Olympic Committee stumbled yesterday when they announced super-athlete Adam van Koeverden would carry the flag at the Beijing Olympics opening ceremonies. Reporter Stephanie Myles had fun rubbing it in (surprise – some reporters like to make flacks suffer!).

Poor Sylvie Bernier. The announcement was supposed to be a slam-dunk, presenting a solid-gold athlete to the media as spokesperson. She obviously did not expect any trouble and apparently, the flack who prepared her Q&A didn’t either. C’mon guys, leave your Mandarin phrasebook aside for a moment and get back to work.

Looks like it’s Bilingualism Day here on Final Spin… It is, after all, a Canadian blog.