At a time when the advertising and media industries appear to be obsessed with the rapid acceleration of online video, one of the media industry's best-known researchers and consultants is doubling down on television -- and video too. Frank N. Magid Associates Tuesday announced it has hired two highly respected vets -- Mike Bloxham and Debby Ruth -- to lead the expansion of its TV/video research and consulting practice.
Bloxham, a regular contributor to MediaPost, most recently was executive director-marketing at the Media Behavior Institute and director of insight and research for the Center for Media Design at Ball State University before that. Ruth was senior vice president-global sales and marketing at OpenTV and a long-time marketing executive at Cox Enterprises before that.
“We made a decision about a year ago to expand and send a message to the marketplace that this is a great time for television -- maybe not the box that television [historically] represents, but the ecosystem around the media form we know as ‘television’,” Magid Executive Vice President Jack MacKenzie said of the reason for expanding its TV and video practice with the dual hires. “In that process, we found both Mike and Debby and were faced with a ‘Sophie's Choice,’ so we decided to hire both of them.”
MacKenzie said the two executives will focus not simply on peddling research, but on leading a consultative practice that taps some of the most current research on the way consumers experience all media -- including TV and video -- and how it can be applied to all the various business models of industry stakeholders: advertisers, agencies, distributors, technology and content companies.
“There are a number of people in the industry who don't even know what questions to ask, who to ask and what to ask of them as it relates to TV and video consumption,” he added, noting that a “piece” of video content “has never been more valuable, but defining and finding the value is more challenging than ever before.”
“It's more about consultative research,” explained Bloxham, adding: “We don't have a given data product that we’re looking to sell to the market. We sit down with companies and figure out what they need to understand.” He described the depth and breadth of Magid's resources as a personal “fantasy” for developing projects, because it runs the gamut from “anthropologists to statisticians.”
Ruth concurred, adding that the hyper acceleration of media technology and the way it is impacting consumer media behavior “creates questions that have never been asked before.”