Reminds Me Of My Favorite 'Tommy Boy' Quote...

  • by October 21, 2011

As a seller for many years, I always refer back to the movie "Tommy Boy" for inspiration.  In fact I talk about it with my staff constantly.  Like most men who are squarely in the sweet spot of the target for that movie, I find myself quoting it daily.  Just kidding.  Kind of.

The recent announcements by NBC to cancel two series, "Free Agents and "Playboy Club," and the CW decision to cancel "H8R," made me engage in a conversation with an agency head of media.  My question: "Why would you blindly invest in millions of dollars of TV shows in the upfront, knowing that a vast majority of the shows will be canceled?"  His response: "Because we have a guarantee, so we know the GRPs will be made up elsewhere."

Here’s where "Tommy Boy" comes in: “I could take a s$#t in a box and mark it guaranteed, but all you’d have is a guaranteed piece of s$#t!”

The online video world is full of outstanding content that reaches millions of viewers on a regular basis, so why are brands hesitant to sponsor it?  Is it the simple guarantee?  Most publishers guarantee impressions and views against content, so that shouldn’t be the sole reason.

A number of production studios can produce a custom series with high-profile celebrity talent and distribute it across targeted sites. Whether we create a show that’s one minute and 22 seconds or four minutes and 26 seconds long doesn’t matter.  The content and message will be exactly on-point, and it will reach millions of people within the brand’s target audience.

So with "Tommy Boy" as our inspiration, instead of investing in a “guaranteed piece of s$#t,” let’s work together to create great content that people will watch -- for A LOT less than what the networks are charging.

3 comments about "Reminds Me Of My Favorite 'Tommy Boy' Quote...".
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  1. Tod Sacerdoti from BrightRoll, October 21, 2011 at 12:55 p.m.

    Andrew, you're trailing off and did I catch a niner in there? Did you post this from your walkie-talkie?

  2. Evan Petty from Snowman Productions, LLC, October 21, 2011 at 1 p.m.

    Amen, Andrew. Quality, targeted programming will eventually attract the necessary investments from Brands. But they are stuck in habitual buying patterns that make everyone feel safe.

    It'll be a tough sale for a while, I'm afraid.

    See my take at

  3. Walter Sabo from SABO media, October 21, 2011 at 1:39 p.m.

    Buyers don't buy videos or tv shows, they buy "Points" and "GRPs" Everything you say is correct. The problem is that in our community it has been said for about 5 years without a solution in site. We can't do "guarantees" with online video without going out of business tomorrow. Interesting, and little known, there have been times when the TV networks almost went out of business with their guarantees

    It would be so much better if they bought based on "units sold". We'd win.

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