advertising as content

Last week I wrote about the dichotomy that exists in advertising: consumers ignore ads, but ads still work (albeit subtly). I then asked if this is the way it has to be and invited readers to comment. I still welcome your comments, but wanted to kick off this series with an idea.

Picture this scenario: you are browsing yahoo news and you notice an ad that says something like, "Did you miss the last episode of The Office? Click here to watch it". You click on the ad and a player pops out and starts playing the episode of The Office that you missed. You can either watch the entire episode in full screen or leave it on in the background as you continue to browse the web.

This seems like a winning scenario. It's useful to consumers, the Studios get folks watching their programming and they make money off of every view, and advertisers make it all happen by running a few ads during the content.

As people continually fragment across all media, it is becoming increasingly important for content providers (traditionally the studios) to intersect people where they are instead of expecting them to visit their site (or TV station). And, since the revenue model is embedded in the content (ads), there is no reason to force people to visit a site (or TV station).

Hulu is close to making this vision a reality. They have a website, but they also distribute their content and allow people to embed their videos on their own websites. Taking this idea further, it seems like the online advertising framework that exists today is perfectly suited for distributing content. The scenario I detailed above seems like a no-brainer.

See below for a glimpse of what's to come:

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