Here's a great example of marketers latching onto the next big thing...just because it's the next big thing.
Motel 6 is now podcasting. Their VP of advertising puts it this way:
“The podcast format allows consumers an expanded focus on topics or personalities that are not covered in traditional media. It allows us an opportunity to communicate with our existing customers and potential customers in a fun, innovative way.”
Yeah, but, expanding on the topic of Motel 6? OK, podcasting may be cool and innovative, but, honestly, how many people are going to go out of their way to find a Motel 6 podcast and download it so they can listen to an "expanded" commercial? And, to make matters worse, they will have to go out of their way.
You won't find the podcast on the Motel 6 site. And if you click on the parent company's link (Accor North America), you won't find it there either. All of these pages, rightfully so, are dedicated to booking hotel rooms. So where is it? You have to go here to this particular page on the Accor site. And the only way you would know that is if you read the press release about the podcast.
Marketers, take heed the example before us. No matter how cool or new a medium is, that alone does not justify its use. But if you can't resist and must jump onto the latest bandwagon, park it where people can see it...or at least where they can find it (in the rare event they decide to look for it).