I thought I'd share some of the notes that were discussed by some key media leaders:
1. "Content is king."Dermot McCormack from MTV was great, passionately articulating the importance of good content: "We keep reminding ourselves at MTV that, yes, we can try to deal with technologies, and discuss various solutions as much as we want to -- but at the end of the day, it's all about whether you produced a 'Jersey Shore' with Snooki or not. MTV did. Period, the end -- and content is indeed the king.
2. Personalized videos can triple your video views and revenue. Kevin Krim and I were discussing the impact of replacing contextual related videos that reside on story pages, topic pages, video pages and the homepage -- with personalized related videos. The uplift it can create in viewership and revenue is ~3x.
3. We need single advertisers to invest $100M in online video. Bill Lederer, CEO at Kantar of WPP, said the industry needs serious advertisers. In a later conversation with me, Bill said that the need is not for a "package" where it's a TV + online deal, but rather a direct deal to the Web. Bill also estimated that the largest video advertiser spends $30 million annually.
4. Don't ignore your mobile viewers. Bismarck Lepe said that as publishers launch Ooyala they see new audiences coming from mobile/portable devices -- from 5% of the total to start, growing to 20%.
5. Blend expensive production with cheap ones -- otherwise you will not cover the cost. Ran Harnevo from 5min was provoking the panel, asking if Hulu is really a good business or not. He compared the amount of money poured into producing the content Hulu offers versus their revenue. This equation is obviously skewed towards the cost.
6. Monetizing distributed traffic is not an easy task, but we're getting there. Andy Plesser was discussing with Ed Halsam, head of marketing at YuMe, the challenges advertisers face when buying video traffic that is not on the "MSNBC of the worlds" but rather on blogs, etc. Ed made a comment that if the distributed traffic is unsafe it's hard to monetize it, but there are some good technologies that are advancing a "brand safety" environment so advertisers can capitalize on that traffic.
7. Good content sells. Mark Marvel from MSNBC.com mentioned that his company is seeing 200 million monthly video views and they are fully sold - because the content and the environment is something advertisers seek. Mark then asked the audience who would pay to read NYTimes online, and most of us raised our hands. The point was clear: good content sells.
Video is gaining increasing momentum in the industry. I see more people coming to conferences and panels than I used to see, and it's the topic of discussion for media leaders.
Those who have videos are seeking ways to get more viewership, and those who don't have videos are trying to get them through syndication and distribution.
Feel free to comment below if you want me to elaborate on anything.