Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Study shows power of VOD as an ad platform

VOD is a great success story, offering new revenue models to augment the TV experience. Let's see, disable the fast forward trick feature, place the ad in the front of the desired content, and limit the ad to one message only, how could it not be effective and powerful. The real trick is to not kill the golden goose by adding more ad messages, creating clutter, and causing the consumer to escape VOD like they have with linear to DVR viewing.

VOD is an ideal consumer platform, offering what you want when you want it. The consumer has shown willingness to sit through an ad as long as it is relevant to the viewer and is limited to :30 or less. Whether that ad is promoting the linear channel, other programming, or even a product or service, the consumer is willing to watch, provided the time used is minimal. They have proactively chosen this content to watch and so may also be predisposed to a message that is of like interest. It is that interactive relationship that enables a unique message to make an impact.

and lastly, VOD, unlike linear TV is also accurately measurable. Not a Nielsen sample, but a true number of users that have accessed and watched the content, ad included. And while the info on this consumer is aggregated to allow privacy, it provides great knowledge to the advertiser on who is watching their ads. That info is far more useful than a diary of potential viewing.

Digital media growing fast, study says

"As readership and revenues shift onto the Internet, experts said on Tuesday that top news media executives must seek new digital opportunities without neglecting their traditional print publications by rushing headlong into cyberspace."

Timing. Isn't that the age old advice. Knowing when to change course and how fast to shift direction. Clearly the advice given is to not lose sight of current revenue streams through print while embracing the rise of digital content. Moving to fast might just result in turning "dollars into pennies."

Yet reacting too slow will turn dollars into bupkiss. Regardless of the distribution, print or digital, it is the content that consumers wish to consume. Making that content relevant in the most preferable ways will maintain brand loyalty and grow revenue.

Unfortunately, the lessons learned from change are often repeated. As the book, Who Moved My Cheese notes, we get fat and comfortable when the current model is full. But unless we are careful, that model can change quickly and we can be starving as wee look for the next piece of cheese. The print model has enjoyed subscription and advertising as a dual revenue stream. Even cable has enjoyed this dual approach.

But the shift to digitized content will require new thinking on how to maintain a healthy revenue and profit stream. Will the subscription model still work or are other revenue models needed? It's all about timing. Change may not happen overnight, but if you don't stay proactive to it, you'll be without your cheese while others are getting full bellies.