Public concern over DRTV ad regulations


Consumers believe direct response television advertising is applicable for straightforward, mass-market brands but not elite brands or those with complex messages.

They also voice concern about the perceived lack of DRTV regulation. The potential cause of most frustration is how calls are answered.

These are two of the findings of research by Ogilvy & Mather which was presented at the Channel 4 symposium, The Direct Revolution in Financial Services Advertising, last week.

The survey also found that consumers are aware of and accept the main categories of advertisers using DRTV, believe it stimulates action and perceive it as a service, or convenience, says O&M Media planning group head Katherine Jerman. “Putting a telephone number on brand advertising does not cheapen the ad as long as the brand is well known and trusted. To the consumer, the line between direct response and brand advertising should be invisible,” she says.

However, Keith Civval, executive director for direct distribution at Save & Prosper, issued a challenge to broadcasters in his presentation to financial services representatives at the event. “(DRTV) is a blunt tool. The very currency of TV ratings is based on the idea that the advertiser always wants 100 per cent coverage,” he says. “The industry must develop better understanding of direct response and create new vehicles for interactivity before DRTV really takes off in this country.”