Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue Feb 11 2014 22:38:36

What Kind of TV Ads Should Marketplaces Run?

By: Ina Steiner

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In Wednesday's Newsflash, I reveal that a major online marketplace is currently testing TV advertising to drive shoppers to its site. Over the years, eBay and Overstock have run TV ads to promote their 3P marketplaces. This 2011 blog post recaps some of the campaign themes in eBay's ads. (I still remember the "Do it eBay" ad sung to the tune of Frank Sinatra's "I did it my way."

What do you think - should marketplaces advertise on TV? If so, which ones would you like to see?

Online merchants have a good sense of what shoppers are looking for and the value proposition of each marketplace. What kind of ads do you think would drive shoppers to the marketplace(s) of your choice?




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This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Wed Feb 12 08:56:27 2014

I always thought Bonanza was missing out on an obvious opportunity to use the “Bonanza” theme song (if able to get permission). It is such a catchy, energetic tune that you would not even need verbiage or actors, just flash a quick shot by shot presentation of what Bonanza is and has available. Maybe payment options. End with the web address splashed across the screen.

Boomers will immediately recognize that music, making it easier to remember that word “Bonanza” and relate it to a website.

There are so many websites promoted these days that I can’t remember them when I want to go to them.  Anything like music that prompts the memory is a huge plus.

Any yes, I still remember the eBay / My Way commercial. That is about the only one I remember because of the music!  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Wed Feb 12 11:56:14 2014

Samantha Bee and Jeff Goldblum.

eBay likes to blow their money on "high profile" celebrity spokespersons.

The rumor is they're currently inking a deal with Francis the Talking Mule...

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by: Digmen1 This user has validated their user name.
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Wed Feb 12 12:14:22 2014

I'd like to see ebid.net advertise, but like most of the alt sites they don't have any money to do it.

Not even enough for a classified ad on the back page of the Detroit Times, or in Knitting World.

I love some of the ebay ads, I have have downloaded them from Youtube. (how sick is that)

On Broadway is another good parody song of ebays.

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by: Patricia This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 12 12:18:49 2014

If I could advise them of what kind of ads they should run I would say funny ones....NOT corny ones.  I still remember one of the first Ebay ads that featured a particularly ugly lamp.  The lady decides to sell it on Ebay and by coincidence her husband sees it on Ebay and buys it for his wife!  That ad was a long long time ago and I still remember it.  Those are the ones you want to use on TV.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Wed Feb 12 12:23:46 2014

Ebay ought to be targeting the demographic that controls most of the household money OR with the most disposable income which is women over 50.

Instead, what they did do a couple of years ago? They ran an ad that insulted that demographic.

The conventional advertising wisdom has always targeted 35 and younger -- and that's stretching it a bit on the upper end.

Times have changed. Baby boomers have more disposable income than the under 30 Gen Entitled. Baby boomers don't act like their parents, don't dress like their parents, and don't buy like their parents.

Ignore where the money is at your own peril, and there's plenty of peril now in San Hosed.

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by: Patricia This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 12 12:25:55 2014

I looked up and found one of these Ebay wrap attack videos....Gimmee a break...solid, ear piercing screaming!!!!!  "Ebay....still annoying after all these years"

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by: brokentoys19 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 12 12:27:15 2014

It would be amusing to see an ebay competitor take a swipe or two at ebay over any number of issues, like insane policies, broken website, fake ID's, hacks, nonexistent customer service, deadbeat buyers or whatever the scandal of the day is.

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by: OnceuponaTime This user has validated their user name.

Wed Feb 12 12:55:37 2014

''ear piercing screaming''....Perhaps something in a metaphorical sense. Blunt and to the point. In following megs statement about monkeys, and jd's policy they could come up with something like this.

Now who does the statue symbolize?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOMS6IH_3G4

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by: thebobman This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 13 01:39:31 2014

So Rackutakatin is advertising...good luck on getting someone to spell that name in their browser.

Or was is Raconteurs? and they could sell colored vinyl records.

What was wrong with Buy.com?

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by: Flying Childers This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 13 07:51:46 2014

If anyone should be doing more advertising it's Etsy!  First of all, they're physically located in the NYC, one of the world's biggest marketplaces.  In addition to cable tv ads and radio, they are missing a huge opportunity to promote the sit by not using billboards, bus ads, train station ads, etc.  They wouldn't have to spend a ton of money to saturate NYC with advertising and promotions, but for some reason they just don't bother.  I don't even see them advertising online.  In fact, just like their customer service, I find their marketing and promo to be non-existent.  I guess they figure if it ain't broke don't fix it.  That is, they're making so much money after partnering with the Ali Baba crew that they figure why bother.  Another loss for the Etsy originals.  

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by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 13 08:34:30 2014

Any TV ads by ebay would be worthless. Unless they were promoting new management and have gone back to the success that once was.  Amazon doesn't need any TV advertising - they have the Wall Street Journal.
If Etsy spent any money on advertising it would come out of Chad's pocket. NEVER happen.

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by: sickandtired This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 13 09:37:42 2014

My ebay fav was also "On Broadway".  I prefer quirky, funny, self-deprecating ads.

I agree that is ebay should even bother to run TV ads, they need to get back to the core.....promote the weird and wonderful stuff, antiques, collectables, the thrill of the hunt and aim at the over 40 crowd.

The majority of the younger demographic are mostly problem children - flighty, entitled and so enamored with their mobiles they buy without reading. They shop like they are playing a video game....quick scan, hit the buy, speed is everything....no sense of  making a real commitment....there is always a do-over

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by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
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Thu Feb 13 11:03:53 2014

The thought of the Bonanza theme song brings me back to the day I was about to have my first child. Told my then husband that it was time to go to the hospital and he said "can't we wait until Bonanza is done?" Rather an odd comment from an expectant dad and we are talking of a show he was watching in syndication! Funny thing while in the hospital he turned the TV on to Bonanza again and my baby whipped his head around towards the TV the minute he heard the theme music. Proving to me that babies do hear in utero!

Anyhow, I do remember some of the better ebay commercial like for the lime green VW. No matter who is running the commercial, it has to be clear that it is a buying site they are talking about, it should be funny and interesting enough to grab attention and have people remember for years afterwards. Vague commercials that don't really explain what a site does are a worthless waste of money. A good commercial shown at the right time of day will draw in the 50+ demographic. I'm thinking now of a commercial run 20-30 years ago that I didn't understand then and still have no clue what it was about. With all the many and varied objects up for sale, it would probably take many different commercials to grab all the different people's attention. Amazon could run an ad showing what they sell with the tag line "We just don't sell books anymore!" Seems like with all the buckets of money these sites are making that they could afford some commercial time. On smaller sites like ecrater I don't think they can afford commercials but I would love to see the day that they could!

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This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Thu Feb 13 11:07:35 2014

Basset got me thinking about music resonating with baby boomers. Since I sell on eCrater, maybe they could use the Star Wars theme, which everyone knows, for their commercials. They could replicate the opening crawl of Star Wars to inform people of the benefits of shopping on eCrater. "A long time ago in an online galaxy very near, there was only eBay. eCrater is here to restore shopping freedom to the galaxy."

As far as where to advertise, even in large cities such as New York and Los Angeles there are small, local channels that probably don't charge that much for a 30-second commercial. Even some cable and satellite channels, such as H2, are probably not that expensive.  

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by: Mimi This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 13 14:38:12 2014

Ask the average person what ecrater, Bonanza, or ebid, etc. are or do and they'll look at you like you've lost it.

Forget Rakuten. Why DID they change the name from Buy? Talk about a desirable .com! I haven't bought from them since they changed because they never come to mind. I cut way back on my store emails and I certainly don't get theirs.  

A few more people may know of Etsy, but not that many. When I mention Etsy, I usually get ''Don't you mean eBay?''

eBay, for better or worse, is probably just as well known as Amazon. Maybe more so.  I don't think either one needs to advertise.  



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