The increasing amount of media control by consumers will
lead to more involved television viewers, a recent
white paper from IBM says. The report also provides notable
suggestions on how marketers can best use TV in the near
As cable, video-on-demand, DVRs, broadband, iPod
downloads and other technologies allow people to take
more active control over their viewing, a “consumer
bimodality” will develop. In English, that means the
audience will be split into two segments - one
consisting of traditional passive viewers and another
more active one searching for specialized “anywhere,
The report makes six business suggestions for the
television industry that PR people would be wise to take
into account in adapting communications to the evolving
Segment – Invest in divergent strategies to reach the
various audiences. As PR professionals, adapt the
message to meet the market.
Innovate – Don’t resist the reality of fragmentation;
embrace it. Figure out new and innovative ways to reach
target audiences – whether the medium used, the
messaging, the event or the technology.
Experiment – Use different methods to reach target
audiences, and measure to find what works, then build on
that. Everyone will be using new metrics and
measurements as the business evolves.
Mobilize – All PR people must realize that audiences
are on the go. From mobile messaging to iPods, they must
create messaging that can be synchronized across the
Open – Develop open content delivery systems. In PR’s
case, this means developing messaging that can be
delivered over multiple media. For example, a publicity
event could include video and audio coverage that the
media could access on the web.
Re-organize – Identify core competencies needed for
future competitive advantages. Ensure success by
continually restructuring message processes and adapting
to new technologies.