In an age of supposedly sophisticated ‘viral’ marketing that counts itself successful if it makes half a dozen people look at an elaborately-crafted hoax website for thirty seconds each, here’s an example of old school advertising achieving maximum bang for its buck. An unprepossessing TV and video sales and rental showroom in the Lea Bridge Road, Hackney, OTV achieved near national notoriety by spotting that, with the nascent Channel Four being crippled by an actor’s boycott of its advertising slots, the way was clear for its Tony Aitken-esque brown-suited manager to slip in front of the camera himself, and flog his humble electronic wares to the populace at a knock-down price. And so he did. On average, at least twice per commercial break. Every commercial break. Without fail. Soon he’d expanded to a second premises in Stockwell, but then the strike was resolved, ‘proper’ ads starring Rosalyn Landor and Nick Hancock returned to the Channel, and the rates shot up far beyond OTV’s grasp. But we remember. Wonder if he did Betamax?
Creamguide's Pick of the Day
I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor tonight, which allows us to mention that when it got to number one, Calendar showed a clip from its Whistle Test-inspired video and captioned it “amateur video”. In fact that video was the first we’d heard of them or it, when it was shown on Popworld in fact, and we never thought the record version was quite as good because it was a bit overproduced. Anyway, it’s included here because it started bands being broken via the internet and that rather than the major labels and Top of the Pops.
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Points of View
- In 'Sixty Minutes', Applemask says: "Complete failure on the graphic designers’ part to make the letter S look like the number 60."
- In 'Xerxes', Applemask says: "Xerxes himself is now the founding leader of the pro-prohibition Liquor Party, who came thirteenth in the last Swedish General Election. Good fact."
- In 'Jonny Briggs', Applemask says: "Could never understand a word these Northern people were saying. Nothing to do with Mike Baldwin either."
- In 'Jimmy Will Fix It', Applemask says: "Jim’ll Fuck It"
- In 'PICK OF THE DAY', Gerry Dorrian says: "He was a classic on TotP with the girls, wasn’t he?"