Credit CBS for continuing its effort to get viewers involved in building a prime-time show episode. For the second straight season, it will allow viewers to vote on key elements of a “Hawaii Five-O” episode.
My suggestion: Expand the effort and have viewers choose some of the advertising as well.
What? With all that fast-forwarding? Right now, half the country can fast-forward through commercials. But the other half can’t. Looking into the future, virtually all digital video platforms will allow no fast-forwarding of content.
So perhaps let viewers choose from a number of categories from their ads: automotive, telecom, consumer products, restaurant, beverage (non-alcoholic and alcoholic), insurance, food, and so on.
For “Hawaii Five-O,” viewers get a list of content categories -- “Scene of the Crime,” “The Victim,” “The Murder Weapon,” “The Evidence,” “The Suspect” and “The Takedown” -- and seven choices in each category. Choosing commercials as well could include some sort of branded integration. If respective advertisers don’t want to go along, perhaps viewers should have some fun with it and offer suggestions.
The choice of a “luau” in the “Scene of the Crime” category could suggest a nice vacation/travel brand -- competitive perhaps to Hawaii -- or something associated with the “The Other White Meat.”
The choice of “bag of teeth” in the “Evidence” category? Perhaps a nice toothpaste brand, or 1-800 Dentist would fit in well. “The Suspect” choice of “aging rockstar” could work with iTunes or Hair Club for Men. And “The Takedown” choices, which include “base jumping” and “rappelling”? I’m thinking health insurance.
What about the advertisers that don’t make the grade? Whoa. That’s just viewers’ choice. Shouldn’t marketers be listening? They’re already paying attention to social media talk -- good, bad or indifferent.
New digital video platforms already allow users to pick the commercials they want to see before a program or video proceeds.
And the ads that make the grade on “Hawaii Five-O” would get a big reach (make that wave) that really couldn’t be achieved digitally.