3 comments

  1. You’ll be amazed to hear that I agree with every word above. I’m no expert on branding, but it occurs to me that if every channel is breathlessly screaming at you, why would viewers choose to stick with any of them? Customer loyalty comes from quality programming and a cohesive viewing experience. If you feel comfortable, why would you change channel? Part of the reason that I often end up watching channels that show older programmes (such as GOLD and ITV4), is that the presentation has to slow down to match. If only ITV4 would abandon its insistence on demographically-targeted sponsorship (I don’t mind Tetley’s sponsoring shows, I just object to the label ‘Real Men’s Television’ when I like most of the schedule), then I’d probably feel it was the best of a bad lot.

  2. Recently saw the end of a Carlton-produced edition of Family Fortunes on Challenge which featured the credits in a very badly designed thin strip on the right hand side of the 16:9 screen with a wavy line border (the credits would vanish if the picture was viewed in 4:3 cutout mode); yes it’s been at least 10 years since the introduction of shouty on-screen end credit promotions which made me feel really old at that point.Not only that, but reluctantly I blame the BBC for a recent increase in the volume of shouty promotional material, because the marketing department that effectively runs the BBC nowadays tries to compensate for lack of budget/imagination/intelligence by overzealously promoting every bit of derivative filler tat using some form of missionary zeal when it really doesn’t have to. And of course the commercial sector just has to follow the BBC’s example – including Channel 4 – even though the latter perhaps has just about the most tolerable form of end credit promotion style that’s possible, unlike the BBC’s which was butchered by committee.

  3. Average weekday evening in the late 70s. (Melo) dramatic Crossroads post credits teaser. ATV Prod cap. Westward slide and Iain Stirling’s voice "Oooooh she doesn’t like the truth now, does she? David Rodgers and Jethro are hunting for treasure after the break." Lovely hexagon optical, advert for Mr. Kipling almond slices drowned out by my Mum and Granny are laughing at what Iain has just said.Back when television treated you a a friend watching its programmes with them on their station instead of as sheeple consuming products on a brand in-between announcements recorded onto a sever some months ago by someone who’s never even been to Plymouth.The key to great television – including presentation – is to make what you would want to watch yourself at home and forget entirely about "targeting an audience". As soon as you start arrogantly thinking "we professionals notice, but Joe Public never clocks a damn thing" like Marion Clunes or "they wouldn’t understand it in Sheffield" or worst of all "I wouldn’t watch it myself but the chavs’ll love it" then you’re destined for oblivion.Great post.

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