Comcast-Time Warner may have followed Publicis-Omnicom into the dust bin of failed mergers, but AT&T and DirecTV are still out there, giving it the old college try.
In fact, the companies are running a full-page ad in the print edition of Politico today, no doubt hoping to get their points across to Congress and policymakers who get free copies of the paper.
Comcast and Time Warner tried this approach last year, most notably in a series of ads that sort of glossed over the whole merger thing and went straight for the "Do it for the children" angle. Seriously.
AT&T and DirecTV, on the other hand, are basically saying "Hey, we're getting together and that's good for you the consumer, good for the country, good for competition and maybe even a little bit bad for cable."
AT&T and DirecTV have a couple of things going for them, here. One: The proposed merger does not conjure up in the mind a Monopoly Monster. Two: Cable companies are easy to pick on.
Here's what the copy of the ad says:
AT&T and DirecTV will offer a stronger competitor to cable.
Americans love the benefits of competition. And so do we -- it gives us a chance to compete for customers and to offer great service, great value and new choices. We'll give customers more of what they want -- that's how the new AT&T + DirecTV will compete. By combining DirecTV's fantastic, high-definition video programming will AT&T's high-speed internet and wireless service, we'll offer customers a stronger alternative to cable, and bring enhanced video options to consumers across all screens. Our rivalry with cable will let consumers sit back and enjoy watching their favorite rivalries. That's a win-win.
Below that are icons representing "Better Bundles," "High-Speed Internet," "Innovation," "Competition" and "Rural America."
Ironically, the sports-themed ad makes no mention of DirecTV's Sunday Ticket, which is basically the only way a viewer in the U.S. can watch all of the NFL games in their entirety during football season.