Ratings Reality Check


It's easy for those of us in the insular ad world to lose sight of the public's perception of our work. With the Hollywood glamour associated with spot production, many prefer to see themselves as showmen rather than salesmen. Yet, the Monday night ratings for a program called The Greatest Commercials You've Never Seen indicates TV viewers have a different take.

The public (except for ad geeks like yours truly who had their VCRs rolling) preferred to leave these gems unseen. To quote INSIDE, "ABC's late-sweep rally was also undermined last night from 8-9 p.m. by a Best Commercials You've Never Seen special (preliminary 3.0/8 in 18-49, 5.8/9 in homes) that kept the network deep in fourth among adults 18-49 for that hour and provided a poor lead-in to the Judy Garland movie."

Even the fact that the special was hosted by commercial superstars-of-the-moment, Bud Lite's "Whassup" guys didn't help. ("Whassup?" "Nuthin'. Watching Ally McBeal. Having a Bud." "True.") Guess their 15 minutes are up.

This sweep month statistic should be sobering news for anyone who believes the network sales department myth that Joe Six Pack watches the Super Bowl for the spots. (If that's true, why don't they broadcast an Ad Bowl?)

Obviously, the annual Cannes reel won't be showing up at my local megaplex or Blockbuster any time soon.

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