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on April 18, 2007
The 30 second spot is dead. The 30 second spot is dead! THE 30 SECOND SPOT IS DEAD! Alright, I get it already. At least I did after the first 60 pages or so. Unfortunately this book does not end at 60 pages. Never have so many words been used to say so little.

The first third of this book (plus one chapter online) (parenthesis meant as a tribute to Jaffe) tells you why the 30 second spot is dead. To illustrate the demise of the 30 second spot, Jaffe uses a dead horse and beats it repeatedly.

Perhaps Jaffe is quite funny and clever at a party, but his schtick gets a little old when trudging through 276 pages of his quips (plus one chapter online). Jaffe fashions himself as a modern day Don Rickles, passing out insults to everything and everybody who uses a 30 second spot. Unfortunately, this increases the page count of the book by about 90 pages.

The final two-thirds of the book is a survey of everything you can use instead of the 30 second spot. Jaffe says you have 10 options and he has designed 10 little logos for each of them (which you can see on his website) (again parenthesis meant as a salute to Jaffe). This is not any ground breaking information. If you have been paying attention and made occasional contact with society, you will have realized that you can use the internet as a marketing tool.

Mostly, Jaffe's observations are re-hashes of stuff you can find in a trade journal or two. And because this is an ADWEEK Book, I suspect most of this stuff was available in an ADWEEK article. The important thing about this survey portion of the book is that it gives you very little insight on how to use these tools more effectively. It's just Jaffe telling you that you are ignorant if you are not using his 10 alternatives to the 30 second spot.

Save yourself $20 and get a subscription to Adweek instead.
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on December 31, 2005
Jaffe has done a fine job with this book, the basic premise is that if you think marketing is all about advertising, you'd best check your buggy whip and 8 track player at the door.

The real meat is in section 3 that covers 10 factors that are changing the marketing landscape:

1. Internet

2. Gaming

3. On-Demand Viewing

4. Experiential Marketing

5. Long Form Content

6. Communal Marketing

7. Consumer-Generated Content

8. Search

9. Music and Mobile

10. Branded Entertainment

If you want to get up to speed on where the money is going to be in the future for marketers, or if you want to save your organization millions in consulting to get you up to speed - this is a great place to start. Even better, the book is in a conversational style with plenty of humor that makes it an easy read.
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on July 20, 2005
I've been in jewelry retailing for years. This book shed a lot of light into what has to change to read prospective customers. Towards the end of the book is where the meat lies.

he made good sense. 20 years ago with 3 or 7 TV channels, one channel reached 1/7th of the population. Now with 175 channels you'd have to advertise on 4 stations on the same time slot and that's exepnseive.

Same for radio.

There's two ways to get advertising to work and it's to tie everything into an interactive web site and STILL-direct mail.

Good read, well worth taking the time.

David Geller

Atlanta, GA.
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on April 18, 2009
This is an out-dated book with little value for experienced marketers.

Jaffe frequently misrepresents industry trends through hyperbole, tired cliches, and error. Here are some examples:
- "Branding online is not only possible; without it, branding itself is impossible.
- "Today's consumer exists in a world of perfect information."
- "No longer does a marketer tell consumers what they should buy, where they should buy it, or how they should buy it. Rather it is the consumer who dictates terms and conditions to the marketer."

Let's be clear:
- Branding is certainly possible without an online presence. But if you do a good job building an online presence, it will likely help your brand.
- Today's consumer does not have perfect information. They may have more information at their disposal than they used to but it's far from perfect.
- Consumers buy what they want. They have never simply done what marketers told them. Simultaneously, consumers are not always able to buy what they want on their own terms. Sometimes they can't get what they want at the price that they want.

***Table of Contents***
a) The Problem
b) The Solution: Re:think Four Fundamentals of Marketing
c) 10 Approaches That Are Transforming The Marketing And Advertising Games
......1) The Internet
......2) Gaming
......3) On-Demand Viewing
......4) Experiential Marketing
......5) Long-Form Content
......6) Communal Marketing
......7) Consumer-Generated Content
......8) Search
......9) Music, Mobile, and Things That Make You Go Mmmm
....10) Branded Entertainment
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on January 11, 2006
I reviewed this over at the CMA - Canadian Marketing Association - Website and I thought it was appropriate to post it here as well...

Life After The 30-Second Spot

You should own this book. I don't even know you, but I know enough that if you're reading this, you are somehow involved in advertising, marketing and communications and that means that you (and everyone you know in this space) should be clutching a copy of Life After The 30-Second Spot - Energize Your Brand with a Bold Mix of Alternatives to Traditional Advertising by Joseph Jaffe. If you employ people or know someone studying our world, they should be forced to read this book before starting their first day on the job. My guess is, this is the one book most marketers wished they had written (I know I wish I had written it) or are scared to read.

You're right, that's a strong statement to make - especially about a book - but it is well deserved.

Jaffe points a sniper rifle at the advertising world and picks off great (and new) opportunities one at a time. By identifying ten quick wins and how to execute them (or, at least, why you should be paying attention to them), Jaffe shines as a marketer who is more inclined to grow a business organically than hop on the word-of-mouth buzz-hype of the moment (which usually results in a quick jump up in brand lift and then a much sharper drop down to irrelevance).

How often have advertising agencies pulled clients aside and proposed a gaming, experiential or branded entertainment program? It's not always an easy subject for marketers to broach with their clients. Now, thanks to Life After The 30-Second Spot, you have the manual. Jaffe does not provide all of the gory details and answers, but there are enough insights to spark your curiosity and construct a long-term plan that works.

So, is the 30-second spot really dead, or is this Jaffe's marketing shtick to get you reading? "Consumers aren't as stupid as they used to be," Jaffe muses. "Rumors of its (the 30-second spot) demise may very well be exaggerated, but they are irrelevant. Using the 30-second spot today is like taking a wooden sword to fight a fire-breathing dragon. You better have fire insurance."

That "fire-breathing dragon" is you and me. Life After The 30-Second Spot follows the same logic path as anyone who is following Web 2.0, Listenomics and Brand Democratization. It's getting harder and harder to jam 30-seconds of original exaggeration into a push channel that people hardly care about anymore. We're all off IM'ing each other as we create a MySpace and Blog about how bad the new screens are on the iPod Nano.

Jaffe uses many real-life examples of brands and companies to highlight the success of people who have already dared, and mixes in his own clever writing pace and humor to keep the book from going dry with academic marketing slang - he's a cunning linguist. If you're looking for that New-Year's-resolution-to-start-reading book, look no further than Life After The 30-Second Spot... it may even make you reconsider some of your marketing-related resolutions for 2006.

Final note: I got Life After The 30-Second Spot for free from Joseph Jaffe. I heard him speak here in Montreal and signed up to be a part of his UNM2PNM - Use New Marketing to Prove New Marketing program. If I did not love Life After The 30-Second Spot, I would have said so. This really is a must-read.

Reviewed by:

Mitch Joel

Twist Image
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on January 20, 2006
"Life After the 30-Second Spot" is an excellent book for those not only in the corporate media world but for students who will be tomorrow's leaders. It is a engaging, jargon-free, and practical primer on the power of branding in today's media-saturated world that can serve the disciplines of film and television studies, communication, and business.

It is not enough for students to study the media as independent entities or media texts as having some kinds of universal and unilateral meaning handed down by corporations and marketers. Joseph Jaffe makes it clear that consumers have greater empowerment over their media habits than any other time in history and the media world better beware! Today's consumers are more fickle, disloyal, and connected so it is best that students (who embody the early range of the 18-34 advertising sweet-spot)start thinking early about themselves and their future career plans. This book accomplishes just that.

Jaffe intelligently demonstrates how media clutter, fragmentation, and proliferation have changed the way that coprporations conduct their business for new patterns of consumption. To deliver reach and audiences, he suggests that products need to be brands, multi-platform goods and services available twenty-four hours a days at a variety of touch points. It's all about content now and students can realize from this book the range of opportunities currently available in the media industries for creative and financial gain.

I strongly recommend this book over any other book that deals with the integration of entertainment and advertising. Jaffe's ideas and approaches will remain with us for many years to come. It is a book ahead of its time.
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on June 13, 2005
(This is a summary of a book review that I recently wrote for iMediaConnection on Jaffe's new book, Life After the 30 Second Spot. Please go to that site if you want to read the full review.)

This is the book that Don Schultz, integrated marketing communications guru and professor emeritus of marketing at Northwestern said that he wished he had written. After reading the book, I feel the same way.

Jaffe starts with a point-by-point detailing of the current ills in the in the world of advertising and marketing, from media fragmentation to consumer empowerment to the internet.

After talking about the causes, the effects and the long-term impact of these ills (it does seem like he is talking to you, as the book has a very strong and passionate voice), he presents his vision for the future. He doesn't leave readers hanging, depressed that the world of TV advertising is going away and that there is nothing to be done. He offers a concrete, and quite compelling vision for a future after the 30 second spot -- what he calls New Marketing.

I liked the book because it is provocative; its arguments are sound; it charts new ground; and it has a voice.

Jaffe wrote a great book. As someone who has lived and worked in the world of new media and new marketing for almost 15 years, I was truly excited to find a book that can make a difference. I believe that this book has the potential to help C-suite corporate marketers see and understand their future and succeed in it. I hope they read it. It will make them smarter about marketing in this new marketing world, as it did me.
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on February 4, 2006
For anyone remotely involved with advertising and brand communications, if you haven't already, you should read Joseph Jaffe's excellent, thought provoking and brave book. In the foreword Don Schultz says 'this is the book I wish I had written'. I'm sure many more people will feel the same.

It's time to get our heads out the sand and realise that technology, media and consumers have changed dramatically. But advertising hasn't. We must move on. A continued reliance on the 30-second spot as the mainstay of all media strategies just isn't going to cut it. Jaffe brilliantly lays down the arguments and ideas for Life After The 30 Second Spot.

If you're already thinking ahead of the 30-second spot or if you're in a state of denial or anywhere in between - read Jaffe's book. And check out his blog site too

Can't wait for the sequel.
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on August 22, 2005
It's no surprise that the internet, TiVo and fragmentation are impacting advertising. Add to that ad-resistant consumers and video & computer gaming. But, Jaffe's all over the phenomenon with in-depth analysis and insights on current and future advertising and marketing trends. But you don't have to be an advertising insider or an MBA to get the concepts--Jaffe's writing is funny & breezy and he's able to break down complex ideas and communicate them clearly. Plus, he elicits input from experts in various related fields. Their examples show you neo advertising in action--pretty cool. Basically, Jaffe takes a Darwinian approach to traditional advertising and advertisers--adapt or die. Which is not the happiest thing if you think a 30-second spot is a thing of beauty. But, it's reality and Jaffe also offers innovative business solutions and ways to reach consumers. Anyone interested in advertising and marketing will find this book thought provoking.
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on June 24, 2006
Joseph Jaffe in his first book lays out the case that traditional advertising is broken and need change in large part to the Internet and rise of consumer generated media. The death of the 30 second spot is in large part do consumer rejection and frustration of ever intrusive ads that aren't relevant to them. With consumers now in control of when, where, and how they consume media, advertisers must figure out new ways of reaching them without annoying them.

The book is an easy read, though backed up with an impressive arsenal of facts and figures that back up Jaffe's points. He outlines where advertising has been and where it must go. If you are an advertiser, media producer, agency, or consumer you need to read this book.
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