Cable Ad Buying for Local Business
Spot Runner launched today. It presents itself as an ad agency, but it's really an Internet-based TV ad buying network. It's totally local, and it's potentially revolutionary (yes, that's what I said), offering spot cable buying for small businesses.
It's a self-service platform where SMEs can choose markets, vertically specific creative (pre-produced TV commercials that can be customized), and then the desired distribution and scheduling (based on algorithm-driven recommendations). They gave me a demo last Friday, and it was very impressive. It sounds complex, but it's not that complicated in actual practice.
Started by the founders of Firefly and PeoplePC, it's something Google or Yahoo! will probably look at and say, "Damn! I wish we'd done that; maybe we should." And it's something people should take a serious look at.
These guys will be at Drilling Down '06. We'll have more to say later.
Here's a brief interview with the company's cofounder Nick Grouf.
Here's the press release.
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It's time to say goodbye to cheaply produced local spots! I'm very impressed with their value proposition and it certainly seems as though they have tremendous potential to be the premiere advertising agency for SMEs. I wish them lots of luck!
We compared Spotrunner to Cheap-TV-Spots.com, Spotrunner’s largest direct competitor, and Spotzer, the EUs entry to the field. Of these, Cheap-TV-Spots.com is the best deal. The air time costs less with CheapTVSpots.com because they don’t pad, and their ads can air nationally, too. Spotrunner does not allow national airings or 60-second airings. Also, Spotrunner will sell the same ad to your competitor should you stop airing with them (which is the antithesis of branding). Spotrunner also holds the ad and prevents you from airing with another agency, forcing you to buy their more expensive air time. It costs less to do a custom ad and national TV campaign with CheapTVSpots than could cost for Spotrunner to make a local canned ad with local air time. Cheap-TV-Spts also can provide a full web version of the ad for e-mail campaigns and web site posting. Spotrunner only allows a watermarked version or a link back to their site with is very inconvenient. Now, if Cheap-TV-Spots.com would buy Spotrunner, that would really be a network coup.