TiVo To Offer TV Ad Search

TiVo Users
Soon Can Search for Ads
from the Wall Street Journal covers a new "feature"
from TiVo planned for next spring to let people search for ads of interest to
them. So say you’re interested in BMW ads. You could search for that, then watch
30 second spots. Oh, and advertisers might get to bid to make their ads come up
tops. OK, we’ll see how great this might turn out to be.

Seriously, if you’re interested in buying a BMW, do you really want to watch
a 30 second ad on your TiVo? Wouldn’t you rather do a web search to get some
more substantial information? And if so, hmmm — we’ve already got those ads
through Google, Yahoo, Ask Jeeves and MSN.

Yes, they don’t fit the video medium of TiVo or television. But that’s the
difference between TV, which is good for branding and desire (see the cool BMW
ad — now maybe you want one) and search, which is good for delivering up ads
that match a person’s existing demand (been thinking about a new car — better
do some research on types and prices).

That’s why I long ago
called
search
as a "reverse broadcast system," where searchers broadcast their
desires. Maybe a TiVo ad search service will tap into that by letting
advertisers tap into those broadcast desires as viewers search. But
realistically, they’ll dish up the same 30 second spots designed for generating
desire rather than informing, missing what the searcher really wants.

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