Magazine article Marketing

The Shock of the New Needn't Be a Nasty Surprise

Magazine article Marketing

The Shock of the New Needn't Be a Nasty Surprise

Article excerpt

It is becoming a really tough job, impossible maybe, to keep up with all the new ways of selling and reaching an audience, or how technology is gradually changing markets that can bubble up in a single week.

Until the day before yesterday, neither I nor most of the advertising industry had heard of Bloke. Yes, it is yet another bloke-ish magazine aimed at a pure sample of 24- to 35-year-old ABC1s, and a bloke called Duncan Lewis and Cable & Wireless are involved. But there the similarity with the crowd ends.

Bloke is essentially a radio magazine programme, except that it is going to be delivered to your door free on a CD. It sounds, in a modest way, like the development of a new medium, almost tailor-made for a bit of respectable heavy breathing, if that's the sort of thing you want to get into.

With the current sophistication of direct-mail databases, there should be no problem zeroing in on the right number of copper-bottomed blokes, and almost by definition they all have a CD player or two. The only flaw that might prevent Bloke wiping out the commercial radio and magazine industries is the small matter of persuading 50,000 perfectly targeted blokes to actually sit down and listen to a CD that isn't in the Top 40. But you have to give high marks for imagination.

Sometimes it is the little changes that impress, such as Safeway's planned electronic retail system that can change electronic price tags by radio. The tags can even flash on and off when a discount has just been decided on. …

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