Sunday, May 4, 2008

Could local media owners learn a little from their US counterparts?

I saw a trade marketing ad for US cable station Bravo (sort of like Arena) on

The overarching concept is about Bravo's 'Affluencer' audience - affluent and influential (ie high income people who like to talk about things they like to other like minded and high income people).

They have some metrics to back their claim (which I won't go into) ... but I thought it was interesting to see a media owner going beyond the same old boring metrics we usually get (which relates generally to AB or reach volume in traditional media) and starting to look beyond the numbers.

Most interestingly, Bravo is not positioning itself as a 'TV Network' - it is a four dimensional media brand.

"BRAVO is more than just TV. We produce award-winning content for every platform. Our audience wants to experience BRAVO every way they can – and we’re happy to accommodate them. That’s why we’ve become BRAVO Media."

At AdTech I noticed that the US are much more evolved that our local counterparts at selling their media brands across platform in a less fragmented way.

So how does it work?

1D Attention: Push media - TV broadcast, webisodes, mobile episodes

2D Interact: 2 way comms - Blogging, SMS, Red Button on steroids

3D Experience: Activation - Books, Events, Shopping

4D Share: UGC - Widgets, Social Networking, Viewing Parties

More detail - click on the image above.

Why is this interesting - it shows a media company trying to align its objectives with the new communication objectives and hurdles brands and marketers are faced with.

It might purely be spin - but I feel locally online media is viewed moreso by local media owners as a way to drive revenue growth and make up for lost offline audiences rather than something that needs to be evolved and refined to match the needs of the market. Case in point - a local media owner pushing the idea of extending a TVC reach by simply running the same TVC online using their platform and network ... isn't this just moving money around between mediums and not really solving the problem at hand? An ad on TV that is ignored utilising broadcast will be equally ignored online - isn't VALUE the key?

I also think Bravo has identified that in many ways, brands (ie advertisers) want to become more deeply integrated into content - and many harbour ambitions to develop their own media brands. I think with this approach they are showing they can play a role in this and assist.

Bravo is showing that they understand the concept that those involved in the media exchange (agencies and publishers) need to embrace and help facilitate communities and moving forward that this will be the point of difference agencies will live and die by.

This report by Morgan Stanley touches on this (pictured left - full doco - - Internet and Personal Sources are the most important sources of information - with TV, newspapers and radio less influential as they CURRENTLY operate.

Progressive media companies (ie from all spectrums) shouldn't panic - they just need to evolve beyond broadcast and look at how they can leverage their audiences to create communities.

Same with agencies, particularly media agencies. There is less value in the stock standard 'buying' role of an agency intermediary. There is also less revenue from this model. (see,25197,23624879-17061,00.html).

Creative agencies are in a great place as they are traditionally the 'ideas factory' and have this position with clients ... however the creative agency model has been based on push communication for years - big TVCs, press ads, radio, outdoor ... 1-way communication. A shift to 2-way and community generation and relevance/value is a whole new ballgame.

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