News of the demise of traditional advertising has been greatly exaggerated.

The general collective wisdom of the blogerrati intelligentsia has been that the rise of the internet, web 2.0 and most especially the DVR would make advertising and the :30 spot irrelevant for the modern consumer. DVRs especially, it has been said, have and would cause the greatest impact…enabling viewer timeshifting. People would see the start of a commercial and just fast forward through it. (I know I do.) But, today Engadget broke a story of how KFC has created a subtle and, I think, brilliant spot and online promotion that completely changes the game.

News of the death of advertising may be premature.

Essentially, KFC runs a :30 spot promoting a new sandwich product. Hidden within the spot is one frame which includes instructions and a secret code. The spot will probably run during primetime and sports programming. BUT, the only people that would be able to see the instructions and find the secret code are those people using DVR devices. And, to be able to find the hidden message, the viewer will HAVE to watch the commercial.

Go here if you want to see it for yourself…

As I said, I think this is a brilliant idea. It puts the consumer in control of the “selling proposition”. It allows for measurement of success/non success. It is relatively cheap. Advertisers and clients should take note of this type of great idea. The future will require many more like it.

Kudos to the KFC team…