A Dark & Stormy Night: the video

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Once upon a time writing contests that started with a premise: a circle of light opened in the clouds and … !

Now that style of competition has gone new media thanks to a television production called ItsYourShowTV.com. Sponsored by talk show host and producer Carson Daly and NBC, ItsYourTV.com gives comeptitors a chance to win $1,000 to $100,000 for making the best show on a suggested topic. The Lost Remote blog has more on the contest including this quote from Daly:

“The Internet has become a vast platform for identifying emerging artists. I hope to expose this talent on a much larger, focused scale.”

September 21 is the deadline for the first challenge, Operation Grandma: “Try to teach your grandparents to use modern technology and make a brilliant short while you’re at it.”

Been there, done that? Here’s a bit that every business should heed and implement in its own way. The basic idea is to grab email addresses from customers, visitors, whatever you call the people who fall into your attention or commerce sphere, and then send them offers for more of whatever you serve up. That’s the spritz of useful information in this Center for Media Research brief that talks about the success rate of that sort of tactic in 13 industries (restaurant customers being the most likely to respond). The survey is conducted by the Harte-Hanks research firm, which was measuring the effectiveness of its own subsidiary, Postfuture — the outfit that does this email followup and twins it with print-at-home coupons and other stuff. So there’s a self-serving aspect to this. But the notion of customer followup makes sense — so long as you amend it to a frequency and make offers that would resonate with your audience or customers.

No space left behind? A Reuters article notes how big publishers are banding together to auction off the unsold advertising inventory of less-visited pages. Says Reuters:

“The publishers will use a product called Publisher Media Exchange from Right Media that they can adapt to their own Web sites.”

Does anything similar exist for small sites?

(Comment spam was killing me and so I turned off the comments until I figure out how to filter. If you have feedback please send to tomabate_book AT hotmail.com.)