The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

10 April 2007

Imus In The Morning Advertisers, Bigelow, Staples, Nappy-Headed Hos, MSNBC


Advertisers Begin To Pull Away From Imus Show


For Don Imus, is this the beginning of the end?

According to CNBC's Ted David, at least two major "Imus In The Morning" advertisers have already decided to pull their spots from the show.

In statements cited by David, both Bigelow Teas and the Staples office supply chain have withdrawn their support:

Bigelow Tea Statement Regarding "Imus in the Morning"

April 10, 2007

While Bigelow Tea has been an advertiser on the 'Imus in the Morning' show, our company does not condone or support in any way the unacceptable comments made by Imus with regard to the Rutgers University women's basketball team.

Bigelow Tea is a family company that prides itself on honoring and respecting all individuals.

We do support the good work and efforts Don Imus has done over the years for children with cancer or terminal illnesses, the battle against SIDS, Tomorrow's Children's Fund at Hackensack Hospital and so much more.

We are deeply saddened by Imus' remarks. His comments in no way represent the views of our family or the Bigelow Tea Company.

Because of this unfortunate incident, we have suspended our current advertising while assessing our future sponsorship plans which are in jeopardy at this time.

Cindi Bigelow, Co-President Bigelow Tea

Here's information on the Staples pullout:

"Recent comments made on the program prompted us to revise our decision to advertise on the program," said Staples spokesman Paul Capelli. "As of now, we are not advertising on the program."

Staples isn't the only advertiser to pull out of the MSNBC broadcast, the channel said. "A handful of advertisers have asked to move their spots to other programs and we are accommodating them" says Jeremy Gaines, an MSNBC spokesman.

NBC and CBS both said Monday they were suspending Mr. Imus' program for two weeks as a result of the remarks.

Before these develop- ments, TVWatch had this to say:

Now comes the real test as Imus looks to save his job. Will the audience return? Will the incident curb his witty edge — and thus any entertainment value of his show?

Two weeks from now, “Imus” advertisers decide whether to make a return visit — brands that include Bigelow Tea, Chrysler and the New York Stock Exchange. That will be a key indicator.

Anyone can make a mistake and offer regrets. But there are usually consequences — depending on how much hurt is released.

Some observers say it’s now hard watching a “Seinfeld” episode — on syndicated or cable TV or on DVD — without thinking about Richards’ “comic,” racially charged routine. The same may be true for Imus.

With companies under pressure to take a stand, don't expect many of the I-Man's sponsors to wait two weeks before making a decision. Instead, they're making moves now and not in his favor.

Because Imus hasn't generated big ratings for years, this is a particularly easy call for clients. In addition, there are lots of other places to advertise these days. As a result, his future has never looked more questionable.

UPDATE: Procter & Gamble has become the latest firm to drop its advertising from the show.

NYT: many other firms also considering dumping their Imus advertising.

WSJ: in this preview of a piece to run in Wednesday's editions, the paper reveals a far more dire situation for Imus than was apparent just hours ago.

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  • Back to the C&P, I see. That's too bad.

    However, there is still a large upside to this "report" - at least you're still not leaning on partisan snark & hackery to deliver your message - so, props for that!

    By Blogger TJ, at 11 April, 2007 12:30  

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