In an article in the summer, Jon Fine observed an interesting paradox in the TV biz. Viewership continues to fall, but ad dollars remain in place.
Thanksgiving may still be two weeks away, but the trickle of holiday commercials this week became a torrent, especially from retailers in Britain, who take their Christmas advertising responsibilities very seriously.
The research group’s quarterly Global AdView Pulse report shows that for all the evolution that we’ve seen in terms of consumer habits — spending more time looking at computer, tablet and mobile screens than ever before — when it comes to ads, the world remains analogue.
On Monday, Nielsen unveiled its much-anticipated Twitter TV ratings, showing which television shows had the greatest reach on the social networking platform. The report heightened the already deafening buzz surrounding Twitter, which, as it nears an IPO, has been stressing its cozy relationship with TV and the ad revenue that it generates from that relationship.
In the latest in his series on neuroscience and marketing, Douglas Van Praet argues that humans are driven by movement and memory, and the best brands think beyond grabbing eyeballs and focus on creating experiences.
America's largest media and entertainment companies are richer than ever. But their profits overwhelmingly rely on an anxious business model.
It seems like common sense that an increase in tweets can drive an increase in live TV viewership, but until now there's been scant proof of such correlation. A study released by Nielsen has found just such a relationship. In fact, Nielsen went so far as to use the other c-word: causation.
The Hispanic market continues to grow in importance to the future of American businesses — especially in the domains of advertising and marketing.
In more recent years there have been more storylines involving gay people on TV shows like Glee and Will & Grace, and committed gay couples on shows like Modern Family and Grey’s Anatomy.
If you are in the business of selling old-timey ads — that is, ads you’re not going to see on this screen or any other part of the Web — then the first three months of this year were kind of rough.
The company that tracks what people watch on TV is expanding a new tool that measures what people are looking at online to markets outside the U.S.
The more screens you have, the more likely you are to engage in media multitasking.
Aiming to create an "object of desire" rather than just another TV, Philips' designers have created a TV that looks like a seamless sheet of glass with a black gradient.
A new report by Nielsen shows that 5 million people in the U.S. no longer watch traditional television -- but that doesn't mean they aren't streaming video from other devices.
A growing number of agency media executives who grew up in digital are finding themselves overseeing the buying and planning of all media.
Just in the United States, tens of millions of people are talking to each other as they watch TV.
Americans who have spurned cable, but who have a television set hooked up to the Internet, will now be counted as a “television household” by The Nielsen Company, potentially adding to the sample of homes that are rated by the company.
Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and insights into what consumers watch and buy, and Twitter today announced an exclusive multi-year agreement to create the “Nielsen Twitter TV Rating” for the US market.
Throughout the succinct two-year history of social television, successes and failures have taught practitioners three valuable lessons. In fact, these lessons apply to practitioners in any major medium (radio, film, television, journalism).
Eager to define itself as a major entertainment player, YouTube is exploring charging subscriptions for cable content as it has already pledged $100 million to create a slew of premium channels.
All kinds of media companies are trying to crack the social TV code -- and those that produce live sports are no exception. The traditional TV platform will persist at least as well in sports as in any other genre, Mr. Bowman suggested. "People will always watch sports on the largest screen they can find," he said. The second screen is just complementing viewers' traditional experience.
We sat with Shapiro and asked him why he feels television isn’t dead and to explain how marketers can attain the most value from this evolving medium.
New research from analytics firm Nielsen confirms what most have suspected about the symbiotic relationship between tablets and television, and offers some hope for a growing crop of startups looking to capitalize on the second screen experience.
200 million connected TV devices will cumulatively ship in the next 18 months, and combined with Xbox (23 million+ Live customers), PS3, Wii, and devices like Apple TV and Roku, about 300 million Connected TVs will be in living rooms in the next 18 months. That’s as many TVs connected to the Internet as Android devices in the market today.
Google has a plan to become a force in everything from TV to gaming, and today it’s become clear that plan involves the upcoming Chrome Web Store. Video game website 1up was able to grab some photographs of a presentation Google delivered to a room of game developers at the GDC Europe conference. The presentation showed off the Chrome Web Store, a marketplace for HTML5 apps Google announced during its I/O conference earlier this year. The presentation revealed some new details about Google’s new app store. It takes a lot of cues from Apple and its successful iPhone app store. App icons, categories and “Top rated games” are all part of the new interface.
The top advertising spots--actually the best whole branding campaigns--have always begun with a flash of brilliant insight about a category and its primary audience, something meaningful that no one noticed before. Call it an observation of the obvious, a point of view that captures a profound and different truth about a product that no one else has seen.
At the Center for Future Storytelling, researchers envision how technology can give people more control over TV programs they encounter and stories they follow.
Once, TV was the symbolic water-cooler that drove consumer conversations. It still is. But the tube is being upstaged by the web, which now nearly matches it in terms of influence on conversations, according to a new study from Yahoo and Keller Fay Group. Keller Fay has taken the air out of the online buzz balloon for years with survey research finding that most discussion about brands still happen face-to-face, and are influenced far more by traditional media than what happens online. But that is changing.
“We’ve been waiting a long time for today,” says Google CEO Eric Schmidt, who is presiding over a power panel of CEOs helping to make Google TV possible. The panel, at Google I/O, includes the CEOs of Sony, Best Buy, Echostar, Adobe, Logitech, and, of course, Google. He needs all of them, as well as developers, to make his new Google TV a hit.
Google Inc. will make an ambitious bid to extend its reach into the living room when it debuts its Internet television software this week. Through a joint initiative with other prominent technology and consumer electronics companies, the Web search giant is expected to showcase technology that TV viewers can use to flip seamlessly among familiar shows, YouTube videos and home videos on their sets.
I gave a talk in Edinburgh last year to a group of TV executives gathered for an annual conference. From the Q&A after, it was clear that for them, the question wasn’t whether the internet was going to alter their business, it was about the mode and tempo of that alteration. Against that background, though, they were worried about a much more practical matter: When, they asked, would online video generate enough money to cover their current costs? That kind of question comes up a lot. It’s a tough one to answer, not just because the answer is unlikely to make anybody happy, but because the premise is more important than the question itself. There are two essential bits of background here. The first is that most TV is made by for-profit companies, and there are two ways to generate a profit: raise revenues above expenses, or cut expenses below revenues. The other is that, for many media business, that second option is unreachable. Here’s why.
Hulu is everyone's favorite provider of TV on the web, but it's facing an ideological battle over its future. On one side are its network backers, which would like Hulu to become a paid service. On the other is the advertising community, which would like to keep Hulu free as a test-bed for new targeted-ad formats that can't be skipped. It's an important issue, because any debate about Hulu is a debate about the future of purely ad-supported TV, which is increasingly becoming an endangered species.
Is a computer terminal like a movie screen? Well, for the past few years, TV networks and other purveyors of TV programs online have tried to display their wares in an environment much like an old movie house: The screen around the video is dark, the lights can be dimmed, and the tableau contains little else to distract you from your snippet of entertainment. But a computer monitor isn't the untouchable silver screen. With that in mind, some media outlets have been slowly mixing in other elements to keep activity-prone online viewers rooted. NBC today is unveiling an online-video viewer placed smack dab in the midst of other interactive content related to the program a fan chooses.
Google Inc. is testing a new television-programming search service with Dish Network Corp., according to people familiar with the matter, the latest development in a fast-moving race to combine Internet content with conventional TV. The service, which runs on TV set-top boxes containing Google software, allows users to find shows on the satellite-TV service as well as video from Web sites like Google's YouTube, according to these people. It also lets users to personalize a lineup of shows, these people said.
This Sunday, the film industry's good and great will adorn the red carpet with their Gucci gowns and Cartier jewelry for Hollywood's biggest night, as the 82nd Annual Academy Awards celebrate the best in the business. But who would win our Oscar for "Best Use of Media to Promote a Film"? We nominated "The Blind Side" from Alcon Entertainment and Warner Bros. and Paramount's "Up in the Air."
Who has time to sit on the couch and watch TV anymore? In the last 10 years, broadcasters have lost 25 percent of their audience. So to win back some viewers, the industry has a plan to grab their attention while they are on the move. Beginning in April, eight television stations in Washington, D.C., will broadcast a signal for a new class of devices that can show programming, even in a car at high speed. In all, 30 stations in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle and Washington have installed the necessary equipment, at a cost of $75,000 to $150,000.
The Association of National Advertisers' annual TV & Everything Video Forum is supposed to be a place where marketers gather to figure out where the business of TV advertising is going. That quest has yet to be completed. But this year, advertisers had no trouble showing us where TV has already gone. Speaker after speaker lined up example after example of shockingly intrusive pacts that placed -- nay, shoved -- commercial messages deep into programming.
Even as major marketers once again threaten to pull back on TV spending -- a new survey indicates they will allocate only 41% of their budgets to the medium this year -- the TV networks are gearing up for an "upfront" ad-sales market they expect will be more robust than in the recent past. In a new Forrester and Association of National Advertisers survey of 104 U.S. advertisers that collectively spend almost $14 billion in measured media, more than half of them -- 62% -- said that TV advertising is less effective than it used to be.
Is Apple's new e-book store a model for the television industry? It is clear the existing TV arrangement, under which cable operators sell packages of channels on behalf of media companies, is fraying. Fights between the two sides over subscription fees are escalating—another such dust-up looms this year when Time Warner Cable's distribution agreement with Walt Disney's channels, including ABC and ESPN, comes up for renewal.
With flat-panel TVs selling for the prices comparable to ordinary televisions a few years ago, manufacturers searching for the next profit boost are preparing a big push with models that can display pictures in 3-D. The world's biggest TV companies are hoping the move will let them capitalize on the billions of dollars they have invested in display technologies this decade and stay a step ahead of the discount brands that have taken a sizable bite from their market share. But the potential gain from 3-D TVs hangs on whether consumers will immediately flock to the technology, and whether there's enough appealing 3-D content to draw them. A delay will allow other manufacturers time to catch up, leading to the price competition that routinely whittles down profits in electronic goods.
The Nielsen Company said Tuesday that its television measurement homes would soon be Internet measurement homes too, bringing the company a step closer toward providing the integrated ratings that media companies are demanding. Starting now and going through August, Nielsen will install Internet meters in 7,500 of its television panel homes, where viewership is extrapolated to produce national TV ratings. Eventually — Nielsen has not said when — data from those homes will be used to calculate combined ratings for TV and Internet viewing.
This week Microsoft pulled the plug on plans to sponsor a half-hour variety show produced by Seth MacFarlane, creator of the Fox comedy Family Guy. The idea was to promote its latest operating system, Windows 7, on what was tentatively called Family Guy Presents: Seth & Alex's Almost Live Comedy Show, without commercial interruption. But after attending an Oct. 16 taping, and feeling the brunt of its characteristic off-color humor, Microsoft execs got cold feet. "It became clear that the content was not a fit with the Windows brand," says a Microsoft spokesperson, who won't disclose details about the nature of the sponsorship. Fox still plans to run the show, but with another, as yet unnamed, sponsor.
After a U.S. senator was shot on Fox's drama "24" this year, another character blurted out the make and model of the assassin's submachine gun. The German brand had been prominent in so many episodes of "24" that gun-enthusiast bloggers, among others, speculated whether the company was paying to advertise on the show.
Even for Hollywood, where long odds and high stakes are staples of storytelling, the plotline is a doozy: A couple of old business rivals facing the threat of a lifetime agree to put aside their differences and join forces on a half-baked experiment that makes them laughingstocks. (We're thinking Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty.) And who do they put in charge? A young guy, a newbie to the biz. He promptly cleans house and hires an even younger guy who's halfway around the globe. These renegades throw out the rule book -- and they pull it off. Their idea kills. The naysayers feast on crow. This pitch meeting would not end well. Cue Ari Gold: Nobody'll believe it, not in a million years. Are you nuts? Get the %*#$ out of my office! Yet this is the tale of Jason Kilar and a company called Hulu, costarring the heads of NBC and Fox, with guest appearances by Andy Samberg, Tina Fey, Jeff Bezos, and Walt Disney.
Television is going cross-platform. Video content is becoming unshackled from the broadcast transmission towers, terrestrial coaxial cable plant and the living room television sets of old. While the business models for Web-distributed video are far from developed and proven, video content creators and producers can now use the Internet to deliver their programming directly to the vast majority of U.S. households. This trend is already impacting the television industry in a significant and disruptive way, and its effect is intensifying. Many companies are now taking steps to try to control their destiny in a future where TV can be consumed "everywhere," on a multitude of different and widely distributed devices and platforms. So today, I am going to discuss my thoughts on how this future might play out -- who might find the elusive business model for profitable cross-platform video scale, and who might not.
In case you haven't heard, teenagers have officially abandoned all means of traditional media. Television? Done. Radio? Forget it. Newspapers? Who reads? OK, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration. In fact, a Nielsen report published just this past summer suggests that TV watching is actually up with teens and Internet use is actually lower in teens compared to adults. Hmmm ... so does that mean that, as rEvolution's VP of digital marketing and youth culture, I should start looking for a new job? I don't think so.
Ford Motor Co.'s "Drive One" campaign has helped the brand's perception when it comes to rational reasons for buying, such as safety and durability. But it was lacking on the emotional side, which the automaker is focusing on in a second round of marketing. This next phase, which is heavy on TV ads but also uses out-of-home (targeted, interestingly, at Beltway opinion leaders), social media, newspapers and an innovative promotion offering a donation to local schools in exchange for a Ford test drive, breaks Oct. 10.
Radio and TV station Web sites may be growing, but keeping up with changes in digital technology remains a constant struggle. According to the results of a new survey released today from the Radio and Television News Directors Association and Hofstra University, only 38 percent of news directors responded that they’re comfortable that their stations are on top of new technology.
When it comes to touting music, movies, books or TV shows I really really really like, I tend to cross the line between enthusiastic advocacy and combative over-promotion. I sent so many copies of "American Tabloid" and "I Love You, Beth Cooper" to friends that I found myself on the receiving end of a U.S. Postal Service restraining order. My inability to comprehend the li'l sister's decision not to re-up her HBO subscription for season four of "The Wire" eventually boiled over into a hostage situation. I am capable of great feats of annoyance. Well, the roommate/Missus-To-Be better gird herself for a Larry-generated hype tsunami, because I've latched onto a series that threatens to enthrall me through 2010: ESPN's "30 for 30" sports documentary series, which is as ambitious an undertaking as anything the network has ever attempted. Hell, it might be one of the most ambitious projects in the history of TV.
CNBC's Advertising Week summit on how marketers connect to consumers could have been called "No, really, we love TV!" The discussion was intended to be a free-roaming exploration about consumer passion, authenticity, and marketing challenges in a world that has little trust for business. But the gravitational pull of Facebook (whose COO Sheryl Sandberg was, appropriately enough, seated dead center) kept the conversation on social media. The apparent subtext that TV might need to get its affairs in order wasn't lost on host Becky Quick, co-host of CNBC's "Squawk Box" show, who rhetorically asked more than once whether she would have a job next year.
The start of the football season kicks off the most important sales period in the pizza-delivery game. A rivalry to match a Cowboys-Redskins playoff would have to be the head-to-head shootout between pizza franchises Pizza Hut and Domino's. In media terms, there's a high level of blocking and tackling, and strategy that is played out in their advertising programs. Pizza Hut leads the $29 billion category with some 18% of pizza sales, and Domino's takes about 10% of the market. Frozen-pizza sales have jumped, as have private label with consumers trading down. As an act of defiance to the recession, both marketers have held and even increased their advertising media budgets in 2009.
The traditional TV ad is losing luster as viewers get savvier about skipping commercials and some advertisers shift to the Internet to save money and target specific audiences. Cable providers have helped undermine the 30-second spot by supplying digital video recorders to their subscribers and offering ad-free video-on-demand services. Now they are promising to help marketers reach TV watchers with new interactive advertising that seeks to engage viewers and borrows techniques from the Internet.
USA Networks goes from strength to strength. In March, the network had scored its 11th straight quarter as the nation's top-rated cable outlet—averaging 3.2 million viewers in prime time, the biggest audience ever in cable. (Johnnie Roberts, Newsweek, ref. below) Every parent company wants a child like this. Of all NBCU's properties, including the namesake broadcaster NBC and its Universal studio, USA has become the biggest earner, delivering roughly $1 billion in profits last year. This can't happen without someone smart and creative in charge. That someone is Bonnie Hammer. Hammer's success raises an urgent question: how in the dickens does she do it? TV is littered with failures. Hammer appears to be batting around .800. What's the secret?
Nearly a fifth of Internet users watch video online almost every day. Women are catching up to men in terms of online video usage. And a growing number of recession-conscious Americans claim they are using the Web as a cable TV substitute.
Michael Jackson's memorial service drew a surprising number of eyes to TV sets July 7. Even more surprising was the number of people who watched the farewell on their phones--nearly 1 million.
Why were so many people in the technology world wrong about Hulu? It was an idea that seemed like a relic of the worst excesses of the dot-com era: a portal for content run by a joint venture of media companies. Could any venture have more going against it?
The conventional 30-second television commercial hasn't changed in over 50 years. The time has come. Technology allows us to consume information, news, entertainment and more not only with a mouse click, but with the remote control.
The traditional TV industry -- cable companies, networks and broadcasters -- is where the newspaper industry was about five years ago: in denial.
Amazon is readying a return to TV advertising after it stopped running commercials in 2002. The Internet retail giant isn't ready to hire an agency yet. Instead, it has kicked off a user-generated commercial contest to find submissions that tell its story. Amazon plans to work with winners to craft their entries into TV spots.
Despite years of mulling marketing life after TV, most big package-goods brands still make it the centerpiece of their plans. But Kimberly-Clark Corp.'s Huggies and Procter & Gamble Co.'s Old Spice, brands that generally have relied mostly on TV, are going TV-free for some current and coming initiatives.
With Internet Connected television, Yahoo and Samsung try to take a leaf out of Apple's design playbook.
Companies such as General Mills and State Farm Insurance boost advertising spending to promote basic products and services.
Thanks to a confluence of factors -- ubiquitous broadband, changing viewer habits and cheaper tech parts -- internet TV is on the verge of a breakout. However, there are still too many interested parties trying to play a part in making a seamless connection -- and nabbing a piece of the payoff.
Is "extreme shepherding" the latest craze out of Scotland or New Zealand? Making the rounds on YouTube these days is a goofy video of sheep covered with LED lights being herded around a hillside in the darkness. As the flock makes its way across the heath, viewed from afar the lights form and re-form into various shapes and ultimately bounce through fields like the old Pong video game. But what looks like yet another oddball clip by some unknown group of college kids is actually a clever marketing ploy by electronics maker Samsung.
Google Inc. is developing technology to connect its TV-ad brokering business to YouTube and eventually video on other Web sites, as it struggles to lure bigger advertisers to both services.
Adults are exposed to screens — TVs, cellphones, even G.P.S. devices — for about 8.5 hours on any given day, according to a study released by the Council for Research Excellence on Thursday. TV remains the dominant medium for media consumption and advertising, the study found. The data suggests that computer usage has supplanted radio as the second most common media activity.
The New York Times. TV Guide. Clear Channel. NBC, Boxee, Yahoo. They tell the story. There is no longer a need to warn of a gathering Chaos Scenario, in which the yin of media and yang of marketing fly apart, symbiotic no more. There is no need to seed doubt about the internet's prospects as an advertising medium, nor otherwise be a prophet of doom.
Why does the TV industry need to keep Web video off your big-screen TV? Not because it hates technology. But because it hasn't figured out how to make money off Web video yet -- and needs you to keep watching TV on your TV.
For years, it has been assumed that home internet usage would cannibalize live television viewing, but there’s something interesting happening between social networking and live television. Could it be that what Pete Blackshaw termed “telecommunities”--people simultaneously watching live television programs and chatting in real time with an online network of like-minded fans--will gain scale and give consumers a reason to stick with live viewing?
Jeff Bewkes hopes to put more TV on the internet, but he's going to make consumers prove they've paid for it.
The appetite for video continued to grow in the fourth quarter as U.S. consumers watched more programming across television, the Internet and mobile devices in the fourth quarter than the prior quarter, according to Nielsen's latest A2/M2 Three Screen report .
The drumbeat of doom for TV advertising has sounded for more than a decade -- DVRs, channel surfing, fragmentation, clutter, the flight to digital media ... Jay Leno moving to prime time. Now the recession has e's most reliable moneybags of yore, such as Procter & Gamble and General Motors, yanking big wads of cash off the table. Yet a growing body of evidence suggests not only that TV advertising still works, but that it may be working better than ever.
I thought I embraced the future of television several years ago when we got our first TiVo. While that event was significant, it's now clear our DVR was only a technological painkiller to make tolerable the broken state of television: scheduled screenings with heavy commercial interruption. But things have come a long way since then.
Many in the advertising business are calling for a new business model for ad-supported TV. It is clear that the value of traditional TV as a medium for delivering advertising messages effectively is quickly eroding, and there is a scramble for new technologies and models to fill the void. Three current and emerging ways for consumers to get TV or video content (including advertising) offer a good place to start to understand how we might answer these calls for change.
Any parent knows how hard it is to keep an eye on several children all at once. So imagine how marketers feel having to keep track of a massive group of them.
The most sacred of American annual rites is upon us: sitting through an over-hyped football game to see cutting-edge TV ads that occasionally rival feature films for production value and creativity. But this year it isn't just about television -- the spotlight's online.
As the upfronts loom, many big brands—like General Motors and Citibank, for instance—are slashing their spending on television advertising out of necessity. But another factor to consider is the maverick CMO who is willing to spend a lot less on TV advertising or cut it out entirely.
A new television program to support Procter & Gamble's "My Black is Beautiful" advertising campaign is under development by P&G and BET Networks and will launch by early March.
Those all-important "digital influencers" actually get their information from magazines, newspapers, TV and radio.