Trylon Communications  - March 2006

The End of TV As We Know It – Finally!

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 future.

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, anytime” content.

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 media landscape:

  • 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 media spectrum.

  • 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.