Are people really this dumb?

30 Jun

[by Todd] I don’t believe in the classical brainstorming sessions, you know the "there’s no such thing as a bad idea" two-hour time sucks?

There are lots of bad ideas. And they need to be clubbed out of existence before the lack of good ideas allow them to take flight. Here’s a perfect example, AdDiem.

Tessa Wegert had a long sloppy wet kiss for this boneheaded advertising tool over at ClickZ. Typically I disregard about half of what I read on ClickZ as self-promoting crap. But in this case I kept wondering if she’s getting a paycheck from the subject of her column.

How else do you justify rave reviews for a technology that expects consumers to download software so they can get desktop-size ads? The alleged payoff for consumers are daily pearls of wisdom or humor in their category of choice.

If you’ve been in the interactive space for more than five years you should be having some flashbacks. At least PointCast (Remember that?) offered people news, information and a semi-cool screen saver. It failed. And :CueCat?  That waste of plastic and cabling offered people a shortcut to typing in URLs. It failed, although not nearly fast enough.

But this is a product that doesn’t even offer functional value. Instead it sells itself with jargon-rich hype right out of the boom:

A hybrid of traditional and online advertising media with some compelling advantages for both the consumer and advertiser. Through contextual and temporal targeting, AdDiem™ reaches the individual.

People will not adopt the behavior they need to make it work. Advertisers will end up talking to a tiny audience of people who jump on every piece free software they can find. Marketers are not going to see meaningful results.

So why waste time and space dwelling on this? AdDiem, and programs like it, are a cautionary tale that our industry is still full of people selling crap. Our jobs, as agency-types and savvy clients is to call it out when you see it. Friends don’t let friends think this stuff is worth their budgets.

Your friends, and clients, will thank you.

(Via AdRants, where Steve is doing his part.)