Preparing M&E Companies For a World Where the Consumers Are in Control
Consumer interaction with the content in the Media and Entertainment (M&E) industry has changed dramatically over the years. The World has become increasingly mobile and the companies need to understand that they need to evolve to better engage their customers in the long run. They need to engage with their customers across a multitude of channels whether it be traditional or digital. The amount of content available to the consumers is staggering and it becomes pretty tough for the consumers to analyze such a vast amount of content. It falls onto the companies to provide the users a better experience by building a personalized recommendation based model.
The ability to access, analyze, and manage vast volumes of data while rapidly evolving the Information Architecture is increasingly critical to M&E companies looking to improve business efficiency and performance. Consumers are moving away from subscription services and gravitating towards purchasing content and then using it on any device at any time. This behavior is clearly shaping how the content is delivered and related business models.
Omni-channel is the way to storytelling:
Today, Omni platform programming is largely television programming reformatted for a smaller screen, accompanied by marketing experiments that don’t necessarily complement the main screen experience. Companies need to think the other way round, instead of focusing on “TV-first” programming, they need to think of “mobile-first” programming and then scale from there to other platforms. Every interaction is an opportunity for monetization.
M&E industry needs to embrace a multi-channel strategy where they not only need to think of the current channels but also anticipates the arrival of the new channels and technology. Consumer demands require that media companies innovate rapidly to take advantage of evolving trends for content distribution, such as OTT, IPTV, tablets and smartphones. Along with the challenge of delivering rich media and advertising across all channels, its necessary to measure how the consumers engage across all channels.
Seamless and Secure Content Mobility:
As the cost of screens and video surfaces are plummeting, there is a going to be an increase in demand for content to seamlessly follow the viewer wherever he or she goes. A smartphone or a quantified-self sensor could very well function as the “brains” of the screen world, triggering content experiences based on a viewer’s location. Programmers will have to use data and personalization to deliver a meaningful content.
Content providers will like to measure engagement captivation across not just multiple-channels but also through across multiple screens to determine how to optimize the experience and ad placements. More screens mean more potential opportunities for ad impressions.
Event-based viewing is the future:
Many viewers have no interest in football or awards show, but they want to be a part of the collective social experience of such events. In the future, the success of the content creation will be how to build enough of a social experience around a program that viewers won’t want to be left out from the original video experience.
Although consumers will demand time-and-place shifted viewing, it’s up to the M&E industry to take this into consideration and provide users an optimized customized experience. This will create a huge opportunity for the M&E industry and will give the consumers the liberty to view content any time, anywhere they want.
Bingeing is the new way:
Bingeing is where a viewer consumes the several hours of the same back-to-back content in a single sitting. With the rise of video on demand platforms and content providers liberating more and more content, bingeing will continue to grow.
M&E companies need to measure bingeing more granularly than broadcast television is measured today. According to the Ernst & Young, Future of television report for Media and Entertainment 2013, around 63% of the users have used at least once the online subscription services to binge. Using data analytics, companies can give a proper package to the consumers which cater to the targeted audience. The main challenge the companies can face here is obtaining the data from the distribution partners.
Unique content to drive the industry:
With the advent of new technologies, the traditional content companies and the distributors are in constant battle to control the viewing experience and to capture new business models. Amazon’s recent posting of several pilots through its prime service will drive innovation by shifting from programming executives to audiences. OTT streaming services like Aereo has resulted in an increase in the consumer demand for a la carte programming and away from today’s bundled options.
M&E companies need to be the trendsetter rather than following the reaction based model for attracting consumers. They need to be able to foresee the future and should invest in future technologies. They need to be able to see the emerging trends in the television industry and that will impact their established business model of ad-supported, subscription and pay-per-use content monetization.
At the foundation level, the companies need to take into consideration that the more original content they produce and broadcast, the more they will be able to better engage customers. To cultivate these relationships, the M&E companies need to invest in emerging technologies that will help them analyze their audience data, deliver deeper engagement with advertising and provide incremental value to brands. They will also need to plan and execute strategies that adapt their supply chains, customer experiences and analytics platforms to address these trends.