This post originally appeared at Marketing Magazine in July 2009:
The digitisation of media has led to a power shift in the producer/publisher relationship.
Marshall McLuhan famously pointed out in 1964 that the medium is the message, and 45 years later it’s possible to say that the message is the medium, or that it’s the package not the platform.
Prior to the easy digitisation of media it was the publishers, television and radio networks, and record companies who were in control. They owned the medium and decided what to publish, how much to charge and how much to pay the producers of their content. The media definitely called the shots.
Today we have a situation where the costs of publication are much lower and the lines are blurring between various media – now it’s all about the package rather than the platform.
Musicians can record their music in home studios and release it independently, bypassing record companies and maximising their profits from sales. A wine retailer, like Gary Vaynerchuk, can start a video blog site and use his exuberant personality to build a considerable national, and international audience. A budding writer, like Tim Ferriss of the 4-Hour Work Week, can start a blog, build an audience, transfer that to a book launch, public speaking tours, media appearances and international fame.
Comedy duo Hamish and Andy are prime examples of a package that traverses media platforms. The TODAY Network Drive time team can be seen and heard on radio, online, on various television shows from Rove to Spicks and Specks to Thank God You’re Here. They’re a multi-media package.
I believe that today we have a situation where the costs of publication are much lower and the lines are blurring between various media – now it’s all about the package rather than the platform.
You can read the article here. Please feel free to add your thoughts to the discussion in the comments section.
Advertising shift permanent28Jun09
I’ve been reading Neil Shoebridge in BRW for years and admire the fact that he always tells it like it is. In the current issue of BRW he is doing just that. His piece, “Advertising shift permanent” will be bad news for traditional media owners who think that things will bounce back post-recession.
Shoebridge notes that executives in FTA television and newspaper, who have suffered most from the advertising downturn, believe that the good times will return soon and that the worst is over.
But speaking to marketers and media agency executives, Shoebridge reveals that the drop in ad spending is part of a much greater shift, rather than the economic cycle.
Is television advertising under threat in Australia?
Earlier this week Robert Morgan, executive chairman of the Clemenger advertising group, wrote an excellent piece for The Australian. He argued that TV in Australia is suffering due to advertising clutter.
Morgan observed that in the early days of TV advertising
Each show had three breaks of one minute each plus an opening and closing billboard, and between programs there would be one 20-second commercial and one 10-second — roughly half of the bombardment we get today. The thought of a competitor being within half an hour of your commercial was absolutely out of the question.”
Today its much, much worse. TV is extremely cluttered and its competing with a plethora of entertainment options.
This past weekend the Twitterverse spoke-out in exasperation and opposition against traditional media networks (CNN specifically) and the absence of instantaneous coverage of the Iranian election and the resulting fallout. “We the people” wanted real-time information regarding the violent protests that erupted on the streets of Iran and the stories probing potential foul play in the results. We took to Twitter to express discontent and to also uncover the real story as it was unfolding live through citizen journalism. Read more
This post originally appeared on MarketingMag.com.au in January 2009
The dawning of the digital age has created much hand-wringing among traditional media providers and the advertisers who feed them. A plethora of new options has seen rapid erosion of the once mighty traditional media power base.
The press is under grave threat as consumers can quickly and freely access specialist news content online at any time. ‘The death of press’ was perhaps viewed as a hysterical prediction by digital enthusiasts only 12 months ago, but is now actually looking like reality given the financial failure of many print media groups in the US recently.
Radio and television are also facing serious challenges as new generations of consumers decide to seek entertainment elsewhere, at their leisure
But probably the biggest threat to the traditional media and the advertising industry which supports it, is the fact that modern consumers are bypassing the ads altogether thanks to digital technology.
Web technology continues to encroach on traditional media at a rapid pace. While many US newspapers give way to online, television is also being transformed by new technology.
Here are some examples coming out of the US:
TiVo, the ad-skipping, time shifting digital television recording device, is now delivering web video to televisions. Rather than download and watch longer format video on small screens, TiVo allows video to be viewed easily through your television.
TiVo have begun working with YouTube, Amazon, Netflix and over 50 other sources to deliver web video to television. So far TiVo have had over 30 million downloads by 60% of their broadband-connected customers.
Tony Hsieh is CEO of Zappos.com the world’s largest online shoe retailer.
Approx half the room has purchased from Zappos. 2-1 Female/male buyer ratio.
(I’m sitting near Darryl Orht from Plaid.)
Tony originally co-founded another dot com that was sold to Microsoft. Left when lost desire to turn up to work.
Zappos was a company he invested in (one of several) then decided to work in.
Zappos is about the brand and excellent customer service. Doesn’t see it staying as a shoe retailer only. Could be an airline in the future.
Media Hunter on Tour6Mar09
Next week I fly out to the US for a series of conferences, meetings and deal-making. The trip includes the South By South West Interactive (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas and the Web 2.0 Conference in San Francisco.
I’ll be using this blog to report back on the latest news, announcements and activities in the world of media and marketing and advertising observations in the USA. I will also be including a big dose of the latest relevant tech news.
I will try to update as frequently as possible with photos, interviews and coverage of the main events. Of course, I will be on Twitter with plenty of chatter, but the blog will have the broader stories and details.
There might be some cool surprises too as a few big names are lined up for a chat.
Some of the coverage will be online at Marketing Magazine as Kate and the team at Niche have asked me to send some reports back for them too.
The entire trip has been arranged online using a multitude of sites and technologies, so I will try to detail how technology and social media played a part in each aspect of the trip.
So please subscribe to the RSS feed in the top right hand corner to stay in touch. And send me a Tweet or comment if you’d like to know anything in particular or have a question for anyone I happen to talk to.
February was a terrible month for the media, especially the traditional media. As the economic crisis worsened last month the tales of media woe increased. I have maintained for a while that we are at a turning point in media and marketing history. Some claimed that 2009 could see the death of press, and at the time it seemed a slightly alarmist call.
Today its seeming more realistic.
Last week a paper that I have read many times when living in Colorado, the Rocky Mountain News shut down. It’s owners had been looking for a buyer for some time but with no success. The broadsheet had been losing money for years, including another US$16 million in 2008. So after 150 years of publishing The Rocky was gone.