Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Execs Identify "Mega Media Trends"

Big industry trade meetings often have panels where top executives talk about the trends they see in the industry.  The recent panel at Ad Week featured Josh Sapan (AMC Networks(, Tim Armstrong (AOL), and Laura Lang (Time Inc.). So what did they see in their future?
  • "OTT & TV: Frenemies by Necessity" - in TV's "Golden Age" if you were watching one program, that precluded you from watching whatever else was on at the time so channels were "enemies" - doing their best to capture audiences from one another.  However, with the growing range of viewing and program delivery options, it's no longer a zero-sum game.  "TV content being available outside of the ecosystem “turns things that we used to consider our foes into friends by necessity,” said Sapan. In fact, when content plays on OTT platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime, the data indicates that ratings actually increase during the next season."
  • "It's All About Mobile" -  Tablets and mobile devices will be major game changers, allowing audiences new content access and consumption options.  Time's Lang predicts we'll see a profound shift in how people consume content, which means content needs to be able to tell their stories “with no primary platform in mind.”  In a similar vein, Dan Rosensweig of digital textbook publisher Chegg predicted that "he education field will be completely disrupted by technology, and that 'content creators and technology will come together to create interactive learning.'”
  • "Growth of Closed Networks" - AOL's Armstrong sees online media trying to create "walled gardens" - trying to keep consumers by closing off networks.  You can see some of this in the redesigned news websites discussed in a previous post.  Personally, I think they'll try, but find that consumers will gravitate to more open networks if they're available.
  • More products will incorporate digital technology that can be interfaced with media use and used to individualize marketing and advertising messages.
  • "Social TV" - with screens increasingly individualized, some consumers will seek to go social to maintain contact with others.  And that goes double for hardcore fans of programs.  For example, AMC's Sapan noted that "after realizing that viewers wanted to continue the conversation after (The Walking Dead) season ended, (AMC) created an entire show devoted to that precise theme: “The Talking Dead.”
Any other forecasts for Mega Trends out there?

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