First off – Happy Birthday to my blog mate Lisa!!
Secondly, after I published the last post about Web and TV Convergence, I came across more enthralling articles that touch on this subject! As mentioned previously, Web TV has been here in some sense for a long time and continues to grow, slowly but surely. The amount of speculation about this convergence has seemed to blow up recently, and I intend to continue monitoring it’s progress. My reasons being out of both general curiosity and interest in how this will eventually drastically effect my livelihood. I figure if I stay on top of things in can only be for the good!
Ad Age points out that TV interactivity has been around for some time, and is in fact very prevalent. While the definition of interactivity is used broadly here, referring to using select or OK on remote controls, a study done by Harris Interactive found that 66% of those surveyed WANT to be able to interact with television advertising! While this is most likely high due to the newness and novelty of this option, it’s still impressive.
A BusinessWeek reporter ranted last November about the fact that the progress of this convergence will no doubt be hindered by media companies and their fear of control. Later, BusinessWeek referenced it’s own article to predict the reality of this to have 40% penetration within three years. This time, electronics mammoths are said to be encouraging connectivity with features on their high-end TV sets.
In my opinion, consumers will get what they want, regardless of what they are offered on a schedule. Even though Heroes is on Monday at 8pm CST on NBC, people have grown used to controlling the media consumption in their lives, and their appetites for this control will only become more ravenous. In my 5 years working in media, I’ve seen the print newspaper industry decline rapidly. But as consumers lead by behavior, the industry is retaliating by giving the people what they want – easily navigable news, video, traffic, weather, etc., all without the dirty fingers. As it turns out, giving the people what they want in terms of media has been shown to work!
As Lisa pointed out in a previous post, online video usage is exploding, and we aren’t talking just YouTube. According to a Horowitz Associates report outlined here, 16% of adults with broadband access watch full episodes of TV online. Personally, I’m a big fan of this because I am without a DVR, but I do have a serious addiction to many network shows such as Heroes, Prison Break, and Grey’s Anatomy. As an Interactive Media Planner/Buyer, I find this advertising opportunity very attractive due to the high impact placements and the ownership opportunities which typically include a few mid-roll placements that I have seen to be not just video, but also interactive units.
This week, Adotas published an interesting article about the merging of the Internet and TV. The author, Peter Koeppel, thinks this is inevitable due to increase of media consumption multi-tasking and how far quality content online has come. This sounds super cool to me as a consumer. My two favorite things – TV and the Internet – become one? A match truly made in heaven. Some of this convergence has already started with the XBox Live, Apple TV and other products. Long before was Web TV, concepted in the mid 1990s as a component which basically allowed for using the TV as a monitor and a remote as a mouse. I remember seeing ads for this in high school, thinking it was really cool but maybe ahead of the times for a mass audience. Or maybe I just wish I would have thought that. In doing some searching, I found that Microsoft purchased this and is still trying to improve upon the original concept with MSN TV 2.
Later this week, MediaPost published an article about TV buying taking a cue from online advertising networks utilizing the long tail of the web to deliver aggregated reach of a particular audience. It’s no surprise that Google was the first to roll this out with Google TV Ads, taking a cue from their Adwords product.
My geeky excitement of what will happen next with this is right up there with what will happen with behavioral targeting in 2008. Professionally it will create another media buying challenge, which I am totally up for. Personally, I just want to watch my Heroes and Instant Message my buddies about how cute Peter Pitrelli is or what power we would want if we could choose without having to start up my computer.