Posted in Trends

Live from the Mediaweek Upfront Conference

Ian Baer, President of Big Fuel, blogs live:

10:41am Panel discussion on securing and proving the valueof multimedia. Really pertinent as so many brands struggle to monetize and value things like Web 2.0 and mobile in conjunction with broadcast. Experts from Telemundo, Comcast, ESPN and Google. Eric Johnson of ESPN points to the lack of a common metric as the biggest obstacle to selling in multimedia programs. David Cassaro of Comcast hit the nail on the head: “bold, innovative ideas” are the real difference-maker between programs that sell, and those that don’t. More to come.

10:59am Great point from the upfront conference: Don Browne, president of Telemundo: “When you control the content, you control your own destiny.”

11:06am More from Done Browne, president of Telemundo: Telemundo is finding that Hispanics significantly over-index for mobile and they’ve been having great success integrating mobile into everything they do — like choosing the ending for a telenovela in progress. Sees tremendous growth over the course of 2009 for mobile, and emerging as a major part of their upfront strategy.

11:28am One observation coming out of this session. None of these media companies (with the exception of Google and YouTube) have a major stake in social media. And none of them have acknowledged a significant place for social media as either a contributing factor — or a point of erosion — in their upfront strategies. Even the head of TV sales at Google basically said, “we don’t make money in social media.” Seems like they need to find a place for it, or risk losing a LOT of media dollars over the next couple of years.

1:52pm Manish Bhatia, president of Advanced Television Services at Nielsen, is presenting their latest study on three-screen consumption trends. Interesting to see their data backs up what we’ve been hearing elsewhere — that overall television viewership is up across the board, but the fragmentation is ever-increasing on the growing number of time shifting options. Very interesting is that the number one internet consumption demographic is no longer the 18-34 crowd, but 35-54 has emerged as the largest online audience. That said, 18-34 year olds still dominate video consumption, with YouTube respresenting 50% of all video traffic, and Hulu growing in viewership at a very impressive rate. In the month of January 2009 alone, 136 million people watched 11 billion videos, averaging 77 videos per viewer, for a total of 3 hours per month/viewer, at an average duration of 2 minutes and 19 seconds. And that’s just astounding in both the depth and breadth of this trend. Think online video isn’t mainstream? What if I told you that 80% of internet users (47% of the US population) regularly stream online video?

And, behaviorally, viewers are viewers — meaning that this online video consumption is largely additive to TV viewership. Manish says, “people tend to gravitate to the biggest, best screen available to them at any given time.” And an interesting trend in multi-screen consumption: according to a 12/08 study, 70% of the time someone is using the internet they are simultaneously watching TV. In terms of who uses their screens for what — not a lot of surprises. Among the 18-44 demo, the fragmentation is astounding: Live TV, DVD, gaming, web, phone. At age 45, traditional live TV consumption jumps by about 50%, though fragmentation continues (with the exception of email and IM, which drop off substantially). It’s not until you get to the group over age 65 that live TV becomes the dominant screen.
Here is the most astonishing claim of the day: according to Nielsen, every single person who saw Hulu’s Super Bowl ad (starring Alec Baldwin) visited Hulu within a month after seeing the ad. Every single one. How is that possible? Am I the only one who wants to find the person who didn’t??? And isn’t it ironic that the most effective Super Bowl ad of the past 25 years was one designed to take people AWAY from watching TV on TV?

1:59pm What consumers want in technology? Here’s a pretty interesting study Nielsen showed today at the upfronts: consumers were asked, of all the technologies you don’t currently own, which would you purchase today IF SOMEONE ELSE PAID HALF THE COST? The answer, overwhelmingly at 84%? Nintendo Wii. HDTV came in second at around 45%, and nothing else really seems to matter all that much.

2:28pm Last entry from the Upfront Conference: Marc Berman, programming guru, handicapping the new fall season: Gives CBS an A, ABC gets a D, Fox a B, NBC gets a C (with major questions about the rippling impact of the Leno move), and the CW a resounding F. His interesting prediction on Leno: that it will raise the age of their average viewer, hurt their local news ratings, and in turn result in a potentially significant dropoff in ratings for the Conan-hosted Tonight show come the fall.

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Big Fuel is one part marketing agency, building brands through consumer insight; one part entertainment company, creating content that people love; and one part distribution company, driving guaranteed results by delivering content to targeted audiences. We work with major brands, leading agencies, publishers and platforms to help marketers achieve true consumer engagement.

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