By any standard, Rentrak has done an extraordinary job over the past few years building and rolling out its local TV measurement service. Since Nielsen rarely faces notable competition, Rentrak has authored a compelling narrative about whether it would manifest as a significant challenger.
Netflix is pursuing a clever marketing tactic with its original series: don't let facts define the message. By refusing to release specifics on viewership, everything meets expectations. There are no flops.
For networks, Tuesday may have come a month too late. Several promising economic indicators were released, the kind that could persuade marketers to put down more in the fledgling upfront. Trouble is, their budgets are likely already formulated.
TiVo has a slew of initiatives in play looking to take advantage of changing consumer behavior and move beyond its early image as an ad-skipping facilitator. It's launched functionality allowing users to watch live, on-demand and recorded content on tablets throughout the home. It recently purchased TRA, an ad measurement business. And, last year, brought Tim Tebow on as an endorser. Tara Maitra joined TiVo in late 2005 and has helped it evolve. The senior vice president of content spoke with MediaPost about how 2013 is shaping up and other matters.
For all those waiting for the promise of interactive TV advertising to be fulfilled, shift focus from the remote control to the mobile device. Growth is more likely to come from second-screen behavior than finding a way to get people to punch buttons on the traditional channel changer. Twitter and Shazam certainly elevated the possibilities with announcements Thursday.
Listening to the top marketer at Anheuser-Busch, it seems pretty clear why major brands shouldn't be expected to move big dollars away from TV anytime soon. So, barring another gruesome recession, networks don't need to do much tossing and turning.
A second era of social marketing continues to emerge. If the first was about attracting followers and likers, Social Media 2.0 is increasingly about that tired, yet crucial concept of engagement. Sparking "communities" was a focus of Turner's upfront presentation last week and Comedy Central marketer Don Steele emphasized it out again Monday.
In sports, one person's greed is another person's sound business decision. So, while avarice may determine how many top-tier sports events move to cable, making money generally is not a crime. A harbinger of where the balance lies for rights holders could come as the NBA negotiates its next TV contract, where ESPN and Turner are the incumbents.
CBS CEO Leslie Moonves says he's not losing sleep over Aereo. But DirecTV could bring some restless nights with the amount of money it could ultimately deny broadcasters. The satellite operator's CFO Patrick Doyle said this week DirecTV has a fully legal way to avoid paying carriage costs for local stations. Broadcasters - including the Big Four networks -- are banking on those retransmission consent payments to provide a robust dual-revenue stream. And DirecTV accounts for a lot of their cash with its 20 million subscribers.
Research has been a staple of upfront presentations for a long time. Network executives might tout how their ratings are soaring among beer-drinking men ages 25 to 54. Or, cite data about how viewers stayed tuned to the programming longer at 10 p.m. than competitors. That type of spin is still around. But in a sign of how much advertiser hunger to demonstrate ROI has increased, research in many forms seems to be increasingly finding its way into the presentations.