The Dangers of Bifurcating Your Business
The Dangers of a Bifurcated Business
Virtually all businesses attempt to achieve synergy—a seamless meshing of the various elements and divisions that presents a simpatico front to the world. In synergistic businesses, space ads, direct mail, television commercials and Web presence never contradict one another.
The exception to this corporate philosophy: the media.
In the world of newspapers, magazines and television news, a “Chinese Wall” is mandated to exist between editorial and advertising.
To editors, content is pure. Advertising is dirty (even though it pays everybody’s salaries).
As a result, editors are fiercely protective of their turf and any attempt by advertisers to influence content is considered a heinous crime against the integrity of their journalism.
In the case of network TV news, the content crowd is given a series of editorial time slots into which they can present the day’s happenings in words, pictures, interviews, remotes and file footage. It is complex, highly intense work. And for the most part, they do a good job.
Wrapped in the heady worlds of war, politics, social issues, the environment and international relations, the news people have no interest in the advertising side of the program and are purposely oblivious to it.
The result is bifurcation, whereby the media are driven by two halves—editorial and advertising—each with its own agenda.
What the viewer gets is a dose of news followed by doses of advertisements for drugs and other products that deal with our most intimate bodily organs, functions, fluids and excretions—all designed to play on our innermost fears.
Integrated into many of the commercials are grisly side effects recounted by unctuous voice-over announcers who make sure we do not miss the possibilities of:
Bowel Movements — Gas — Vomiting — Limp Penises — Leg Cramps — Headaches — Nausea — Decrease in Vision — Backaches — Four-hour Erections — Dizziness — Runny Nose — Decrease in Semen — Unexplained Muscle Pain — Sudden Loss of Blood Pressure — Gambling Urges — Fainting —Liver Problems — Chest Pain — Trouble Urinating — Drowsiness — Sexual Urges — Diarrhea — Prostate Cancer — Cataract Surgery — Falling asleep while driving — Upset Stomach — The need to see a doctor right away!