The past few years have seen rapid developments in TV land. Start-ups have failed, flourished and consolidated; new technologies have led to new behaviors and novel buzzwords are thrown around quicker than we skip through commercials. With all of the new gadgetry and capability however, there remains a plethora of pain points rippling through traditional entertainment/broadcast organizations.
These issues, however, are also the largest conduits to what will be immense growth led by a new breed of start-ups. Social TV, connected TV and multiscreen platforms and services have seen some viable adoption, but nothing compared to what we will see as the massive industry continues to evolve with limited deliverable solutions to the pain points yet seen. If we look into three of these most problematic issues we can gain a better perspective as to where innovation will occur, and where investment should be explored.
Choice: No matter how interesting or engaging specific TV/video programming and content may be, viewers have a huge number of options that never before existed. Outside of increasing amounts of traditional channels exist a wealth of on-demand content, over the top content and more digital video than one could imagine. With thousands of calls to action for what to watch or for how long, broadcasters, publishers and advertisers deal with far less retention, engagement and attraction based on this fragmentation.
Startup/Innovator Potential? Discovery and personalization. Discovery of programming and content is a need for audiences that also solves the industry marketing crises. While choice is good, overabundance of content without a navigation route must change for audiences. With innovations in personalization we will see highly engaged consumers, who yield the industry with highly engaging data and are more receptive to stay engaged with specific content.
First Responder: IRIS.TV is a novel startup that helps make digital video more accessible and profitable to both consumers and publishers. Through dynamic recommendations based on individual personal consumption habits, IRIS.TV brings together a linear viewing experience and video personalization, which is exactly what the industry needs to help consumers navigate a veritable jungle of content, choice and attention.
Attention shifting: While watching TV programming, viewers have a slew of elements they could be engaged with in their digital galaxies outside of whatever screen they are viewing within. Are viewers 100 percent focused on a certain program, or is 50 percent attention share going to other digital endeavors? Are they only 20 percent focused on programming while their attention is going to online shopping? Facebook? Words with Friends? In most cases without proper usage, the multiscreen landscape for all of its potential drives user focus away from television content.
Startup Potential? Engagement innovations that focus on how to take viewers down a path that is exciting and novel. These experiences will drive audiences to engage across devices endemically. How does the industry engineer new experiences that are the modern equivalent of the transition from black and white to color? Multiscreen engagements, transmedia and digital gamification will all be utilized to capture attention and divert it back.
First Responder? iPowow. This startup originally out of Australia, has been showcasing amazing ways to create interactivity, gamification and intensive participation across TV and digital with audiences worldwide working with organizations like ESPN, Fox Sports, Red Bull, A&E and USA Network. They are showing the industry how to draw attention back to the story and recapture shifting attention spans.
Time-shifting: This is not new, but as increased choice, enhanced skipping technologies and OTT content increases, audiences have the freedom to watch any time they would like. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing for content, but it does negatively impact the advertising aspect. Without a call to action on specific timing, advertising content is less valuable, targeted and time sensitive. Ad content that strikes less attention and is avoidable also offers less real time chatter via social sharing and far less data yielded about audiences than live TV. This factored in with less engagement, as seen in the above section, deals a crippling blow to the ad industry.
Startup Potential? Advertising innovations- What these may look like is up for grabs on a few fronts, but it’s clear that the traditional 30-second spot is and has been in severe danger. Innovators are needed who can set forth to create novel formats for brand conversations that captivate, are highly personalized, laser targeted and multiscreen.
First Responder: Ad Tonik. Ad Tonik is helping to facilitate an interchange between smart devices and Television. By targeting ad spots to mobile users based on the shows they watch endemically, this startup has the potential to aid brands and agencies in better optimizing ad spends and making brand messages relevant in a multiscreen world.
Where else will the chips fall? Let us know.
Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/biz/business/op-ed-emerging-tv-innovation-in-a-multiscreen-world-has-just-begun/article/364660#ixzz2odzWeUaW
Facebook versus Twitter: The news of the Social TV battle has been abuzz with debate, conjecture and analysis across the board. On a recent interview, I was asked “Who do you think is going to be the long term winner between the two?” “Who will lead in gaining TV Ad spend share?”
The question represents a rather myopic view of emerging TV. There is no one winner between the two big platforms- and neither offers one specific holy grail for Social TV. The truth is that both will see their fair share of TV advertising spend if initiatives are developed with deference to audience behaviors. Facebook and Twitter are differing platforms with differing advantages and disadvantages when it comes to socialization and interactivity in correlation to entertainment viewing. Their potential and utilization by audiences will always be different as should be their development goals for the TV space.
The past few months have seen many articles in circulation that pose the debate over who has more TV chatter or propose diverse claims regarding one platform’s merits versus the other. Similarly, the two organizations themselves have evangelized based on developments and metrics that seem to mirror one another. It is an example of very in-the-box thinking that is occurring. Twitter is not Facebook. Facebook is not Twitter. Comparing the two is like trying to compare apples versus oranges. They should be viewed as separate means to sometimes similar and sometimes differing ends.
The how/where/when/why of audiences in regards to social media is a study in human nature and sociology that is highly subjective. The core of any research however, shows that in today’s digital world each and every individual utilizes differing formats/venues of communication for differing purposes. This is the reason why many Facebook users are also on twitter and vice versa. Both are used as social tools and both are used in differing ways. Usage is not standard nor uniform across any platform and so treating multiscreen endeavors as something that can be equally measured, analyzed, developed or contrasted is off-base and dangerous.
Less dangerous, but equally unexciting is the fact that the platforms are both trying to provide the same values to the television industry as the “conversational peripheral” for TV chatter. On this topic, Facebook needs to step outside their current scope and rethink. The goal should be less focused on developing easier routes to conversation such as adding hashtag functionality and more focused on developing novel functionalities based on the strengths of the platform. Currently, striving to act in a similar manner as Twitter solely scratches the surface of how to better drive attraction, engagement, and retention of viewers with zero distinction.
Facebook has tremendous potential to be used for deep television/multiscreen related content and advertising experiences. The ability to explore transmedia and branded entertainment initiatives, new ways to drive and steer mechanisms of TV interactivity and the ability to integrate real time user generated content in novel ways have limitless potential. These three functionalities can become intensive engagement experiences and take advantage of Facebook’s unique aspects.
For chatter- Facebook is weak. It doesn’t allow the rapid-fire back and forth endemic conversations like Twitter does. It also does not allow expansion to external audiences outside of ones own network. This is countered however with the fact that Twitter doesn’t have nearly the same capability to present rich (and shareable) portals that beg for interaction. Facebook needs to develop their unique differentiators across differing metrics and they need to develop and evangelize some of their amazing potential for TV in a novel way. This should be driven by a better understanding of their value proposition to both audiences and the industry.
It’s time to start looking outside of the box when it comes to Social TV- There are amazing integrations to be found across platforms, but we have to acknowledge that differing conversational venues will be utilized differently and thusly need to foster potential based on their differing strengths.
As the battle for most robust social TV peripheral platform rages on between Facebook and Twitter and more innovators continue to both launch and leave the market, the TV industry is still throwing darts trying to decipher what multiscreen endeavors for both content and advertising will actually be efficacious. The below announces the launch of our Think Tank which seeks to address the landscape from a new perspective- What actually influences audience behavior, engagement and motivation across both individuals and groups. The announcement is below.
Emerging Insider Communications, a boutique public relations and marketing firm is proud to launch the emerging TV industry’s first comprehensive multi-discipline Think Tank to address disruptions, innovations and new methodologies across television, advertising, and the entertainment content landscape.
Emerging Insider is bringing together a range of professionals across non-traditional disciplines including media psychologists and research sociologists to pair with their media and brand strategists in order to further understand and position new endeavors, multiscreen methodologies, advertising innovations and smart TV technologies.
The firm believes that as the television and video content marketplace continues to evolve and intersect with the digital landscape, a number of broad spanning crucial initiatives need far greater levels of understanding when it comes to deep psychological and sociological data and understanding. With a slew of innovations, methods and startups that entered and left the market rapidly, the belief is that a greater basis for understanding audience engagement across television, social media and digital devices is the key to evangelizing new products and engaging viewers.
Emerging Insider will be bringing on renown Media Psychologist Dr. Pamela Rutledge as a consultant to study and advise upon viewer behavior, analyze user experience and to help to develop novel strategies for engagement. The team also consists of several sociology and anthropology consultants with backgrounds in media to provide deeper understandings of group behaviors and interactions on a holistic level.
Zachary Weiner, CEO, of Emerging Insider Communications stated “What we’ve seen are a lot of organizations with amazing products and services, but little understanding of how to drive their models forward. A portion of the disconnect found in TV and other media sectors is due to fundamental flaws in the understanding of novel psychology and sociology behind audience behaviors, levels of engagement and motivation. Our goal is to assist our clients and the industry at large in developing products and initiatives that capitalize on robust insights to better position innovations in the market. A think tank of diverse practice areas to facilitate greater knowledge is needed across the board.”
The group took the initiative to bring forth this variety of professionals across multiple disciplines to enhance and build on what has been limited data and restrictive research. They believe it’s a way to stop throwing darts and focusing on business drive initiatives and start developing audience driven initiatives with a strong foundation of efficacy based on deeper understanding.