John Moore Say Hello!
john@brandautopsy.com
512.633.4086
Twitter Linkedin Facebook

I Don’t Want My GSTV

Gstv_1

That’s a picture of the latest brilliant marketing idea – showing television commercials to people pumping gas. Gas Station TV has been testing this marketing idea in Dallas and is expanding the test to more markets with an eye towards having 1,000 gas stations in 21 states by next year. Airing on GSTV will be 15-second commercials as well as news/entertainment content from the ABC television network.

This marketing venture is doomed to fail because GSTV is working under the decaying marketing premise that awareness is the end game for marketers. I don’t think David Leider, GSTV CEO gets IT as evidence by this quote, “This is a truly captive audience that we have–those stuck at the pump–and this is a great opportunity to engage them.” [SOURCE]

I’m reminded of a quote from David Polinchock of the Brand Experience Lab where he once said that consumers don’t like to be captive; however, they do like to be captivated.

The message for marketers is simple: Design marketing activities to be captivating to audiences and not to design marketing activities to hold audiences captive. Captivated – YES!!! Captive – NO!

But this decaying marketing mindset seems prevalent at GSTV. Adam Bleibtreu, GSTV President, is quoted in the June 5th issue of Ad Age saying, “We’ve taken the television set from your living room and put it in the gas station.”

Yo Adam … why would I, as a consumer, want you to take the television from my living room and put it in a gas station? Seriously, why? What I do want at every gas station is a hand sanitizer dispenser on every pump. Not a TV screen. Dig?

20 Comments

  • Jon Gabriel says:

    Hot Business Idea: Start a company that fixes vandalized GSTV screens! Leider would do better trying to involve (the best meaning of “engage”) the customer rather than force-feeding unwelcome messages at him or her.

  • This is about as dumb as the advertisements on grocery shopping carts or the money saving coupons on the back of the grocery receipts

  • Watch Commercials and Pump Gas? Yeah!John has an illuminating post up today at Brand Autopsy. Will we all soon be subjected to advertising at the gas pump?

  • Watch Commercials and Pump Gas? Yeah!John has an illuminating post up today at Brand Autopsy. Will we all soon be subjected to advertising at the gas pump?

  • Zmetro.com says:

    An Answer in Search of A QuestionJohn Moore:Thats a picture of the latest brilliant marketing idea showing television commercials to people pumping gas. Gas Station TV has been testing this marketing idea in Dallas and is expanding the test to more markets with eye towa…

  • Jon Gabriel says:

    Hot Business Idea: Start a company that fixes vandalized GSTV screens! Leider would do better trying to involve (the best meaning of “engage”) the customer rather than force-feeding unwelcome messages at him or her.

  • Matt Steele in the Hour of Chaos says:

    The gas station that is closest to my house had these. They worked for about a month and then went out of service one by one. When they fall into disrepair, who is going to fix them? The gas station attendant? Someone who works for GSTV? How will GSTV know when their screens are not working?Bad idea. “I know: they are already irritated that they had to stop and get gas, so let’s see if we can push them into full blown resentment by showing them TV commercials while they pump their gas! That way, they can learn to hate the product we are advertising AND the gas station that they stopped at.”

  • Here’s a better idea for making money at the pump. I visited a Hess station today and, as I always do, I used my debit card to pay. After inserting my card and choosing debit as my payment method, the screen then asked me if I would like a car wash, too. I was so impressed I knocked on the passenger window to tell my partner about this brilliant upsell! Even though we were in a rush, I was tempted to pay for the car wash and then easily drive through after pumping my gas. Convenient for me, smart for Hess. If I hadn’t been in a rush, they would have had me. And deservedly so.

  • Jason says:

    I think some of you may have it all wrong. What if these Televisions started showing five minute preview clips your favorite ABC show. These could be exclusive clips that can only be viewed at gas stations as you pump gas.I think Lost, Desperate Housewives, and Grey Anatomy fans might be lined up to view the exclusive clips. My girlfriend can not stop talking about Dr. Mc Dreamy…I might as well give her an excuse to pump her own gas. Somewhat kidding…

  • Pumping Televsion to the MassesThere is a good post on John Moore’s Brand Autopsy Blog about GSTV. GSTV pumps video and audio clips to people as they pump their gas at local gas stations. I think this concept could fail or be a wild,

  • Jason … why not just stream those exclusive clips online. That way, we can enjoy the exclusives in the comfort of our homes. But GSTV is all excited about being able to take my TV set from my living room in placing it in a gas station. Given that is gonna be an uncomfortable 100 degrees HOT today in Austin … the last thing I wanna do is stand outside in the heat watching an exclusive clip. Dig?

  • Jason says:

    I got you John. I am in the 100 degree heat of Dallas. Maybe they should put misters at the pump like they do at rock concerts. I do have to say the best thing at my bank is the financial news that is playing on the monitors as I wait for the teller to give me my receipt.

  • Bingo Jason! Install “misters” to solve a consumer problem while pumping gas. And in cold weather markets, install some heating fans or something. Installing TV monitors to show videos doesn’t solve a problem … it only adds to the problem of advertising/information clutter.

  • Mike Moore says:

    From a generational stand point it seems that it could be more effective if there was an offering other than a preview. Something that engages the person and allows he or she to get something back in return for there time at the pump. Lets say its an Valero gas station and you are there all the time because its near your house. What if you where able to sign up for a valero credit card and everytime you filled up and used the monitor you would be given reward points for playing a game or survey to better understand what is going on in the world or what type of music someone prefers. There is a strategic approch to having things set up to interact giving you a lifecycle approch. Gen Y, X, and D(digital) will dismiss the simple things quickly unless they are apart of it and are getting something in return.Just a thought.

  • Rakeman says:

    Gas Station TVIn an effort to reach captive audience in the remotest corners of society, Gas Station TV ensures that you won’t spend the time filling up your car reflecting on the impact of our high velocity lifestyle, but rather watch…

  • Yo Yo Mother says:

    I guess this won’t work in New Jersey – state law disallows those from pumping their own gas.

  • Garshgrang says:

    This has been tried before. I remember about about ten years ago, some company had the great idea to install TVs at the checkout lines of supermarkets. It was the next big thing, unlimited success for everyone. In the one local store which had it, it lasted about two months.

  • Heiko says:

    I’m glad living in Germany where we still regard is as a revolution to habe a small print ad on the pump. Or is it that advertising in this country wants us to have our heads down?

  • Tim Courtney says:

    I just experienced this “brilliant” marketing idea yesterday for the first time. IT SUCKS. I sought refuge inside my car while my gas pumped, and it was so loud I could hear it in there. When I went inside the gas station to tell the owner to turn it off, he told me to “put something in my ear” if I didn’t want to hear it.He just lost my business. Up until now that was the gas station I frequented the most, as it’s right on the corner. I’ll drive another block from now on to get my gas commercial-free.

  • Amberly says:

    serisouly, what the hell is so wrong with the idea? you’re pumping gas, you get bored, its not like they’re making you watch it. no matter where you go, you’re going to get bombarded with advertisements, this one just has the decency to at least show something worthwhile like local news and traffic updates.