International Sales News - As Seen on TV Products

International news, issues, and trends for innovative consumer products in the direct response television industry (DRTV), as well as tips for export management & international product sales. This blog focuses on the As Seen on TV product category.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

NBC Reaches Across The Pond

A new division of NBC established last year, NBC Universal is dedicated to the international expansion of television production of the company. NBC has set a goal to double it's revenue generated from international ventures by the year 2010, to account for 30%of the entire company's business.

In the quest for international expansion, NBC Universal has been considering acquisitions and partnerships in India, France, Spain and Russia. Already, they have announced their first acquisition of the British independent production firm Carnival Film and Television, a deal rumored to be worth in excess of $55 million. Through this acquisition NBC Universal aspires to develop new television and film concepts for international markets and establish it's base for further international growth.

As international expansion is one of NBC Universal's strategic priorities, they will continue to search for new opportunities to produce programming and license rights and to develop new ideas for programming created for specific local audiences around the globe. The new programming may also be making it's way back to the US NBC schedule as well.

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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

How To Convert Inches to Cubic Meters

When shipping internationally situations may arise where you will need to convert the size of a shipment of units that are measured in inches to cubic meters. It's really quite easy to do so, just following the few simple steps of this equation:

The conversion ratio to convert inches to centimeters is: (2.54 cm/1 inch); and the ratio to convert centimeters to meters is: (1 m/100 cm); or more simply
0.0254 meters/ 1 inch

Using this ratio you multiply each dimension in inches (length, width, and height) by the conversion ratio. Then, you multiply each of those values together and you end up with the cubic meters.
  • (length * 0.0254) * (width * 0.0254) * (height * 0.0254) = cubic meters
Then, to find how many cubic meters an entire shipment is of multiple units, you simply take the value you found for cubic meters for one unit and multiply it by the total number of units.

I want to find how many cubic meters 500 units of an item that is 18x10x13 inches:

[18*0.0254] * [10*0.0254] * [13*0.0254]

=0.4572 * 0.254 * 0.3302

= 0.03835 * 500 unit shipment = 19.175 cubic meters

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Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Ads Pulled From UK TV As A Result of US Complaints

Recently two television advertisements airing on UK TV were pulled completely off the air after the Advertising Standard Authority received hundreds of complaints that the ads were offensive. However, it was not UK citizens that were upset by the ads; it was US citizens who demanded the advertisements be taken off the air in the UK.

The ads in question were for Heinz Deli Mayo and Snickers. The Heinz ad featured two men briefly kissing and the Snickers ads that feautred Mr. T was thought to be offensive to gay people. After receiving pressure from US lobbyists, and fearing US boycotts, the two companies pulled their ads and apologized for offending anyone.

What it so interesting about this is that neither of the advertisements were ever aired in the US. How could so many US citizens be so offended by a television ad that never aired on US TV? Of course, because of the Internet; the Internet has created an environment where nothing, including ads, is purely local anymore. Consumers of one culture now have the ability to influence and change what those in another country see. As Heinz and Snickers are American brands, Americans feel they should have a say in how these companies market themselves internationally.

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

China Purging Explicit and Illegal Ads From TV

China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television has announced its plans to enforce stricter rules and regulations on the what advertisements will be allowed to air on television and when. The goal of this action is to make Chinese television more pure and appropriate for the public.

The ads being specifically targeted are ones that make strong unsubstantiated claims on the efficiency of medicines and anything with "explicit" content. One of the biggest problems for China is that many of the commercials for medicines have been licensed, meaning they are approved for television. The problem arises when the claims of these licensed ads are altered prior to airing to misguide the viewers, which is then illegal.

Because of these issues China will step up monitoring of ads that may a "negative social impact" on Chinese society. As part of the tougher controls on advertisements, those deemed controversial will only be allowed to air before and after prime time; these include ads featuring medicines and feminine hygiene products. Commercials being even more limited are those for female undergarments which will be restricted to airing only at midnight.

Already nearly 30 Chinese radio and television broadcasters have together released a self-discipline agreement promising to comply with regulations in an effort to better society as a whole. If any broadcasting stations do not abide by these tighter rules by removing or making the necessary changes to ads that are vulgar or break the law more than three times in 60 days will face suspension on their ability to air and prospectively lose their license to air, among other punishments.

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