Friday, February 15, 2008

Two Late Night Shows React to the end of the Writer's Strike

Networks Plot Course - How to woo back viewers

Im tired of the same old stuff on TV. The writers strike took away my favorite shows and made me quickly tired of reality shows. My Tivo is empty with nothing new recorded for me to watch; I gravitate to news and sports, at least that content is fresh.

The learning curve is that shows don't necessarily have to premiere in the Fall. It's not when a show starts, but the quality of the product and its stories that appeal to an audience. And it will become harder to build shows that appeal to large audiences as the growth of distribution, cable channels and new media platforms, further splits the audience into smaller parts. Still there is a need for fresh and new to get back the viewers that have left TV for other choices.

If I could program a network, I would strategically select shows that appeal to various audience demographics and plot out marketing strategies to reach them. And I would use TV, VOD, mobile and pc to gain interest and desire to become a loyal viewer to each new series. TV networks react to trends. One channel creates a medical show, and the others follow at the same time with a duplicative series. I would want to program the network that leads, rather than follows the pack. Missing from today's line-up today, I propose the following new series: 1) a Western - a la Broken Trail and starting a new life in the old west; 2) a Variety series - hosted by former American Idol talent with professional talent - individual acts as well as comedy and singing skits; 3) Historical series - life in 18th or 19th century - with classic family drama; 4) Family comedy series where a job change forces a family to move, from the NYC to Midwest, and the challenges when small towns don't have the same issues and neighbors act different; and 5) a Sci Fi series - perhaps Star Trek Academy or time traveler focused. That would be my wish list to woo back viewers.