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Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Media's new distribution channels are missing the point.

Every day it seems another media outlet is announcing a new distribution strategy. today it's the Discovery Channel, who'll be putting its programmes on iTunes. Yesterday Fox announced the same and NBC launched 2 web only channels. Last week CBS jumped in and before them ABC.

What problem are they solving?

Consumers are running away from traditional media so lets follow them to the Internet, or so goes the logic. However, consumers aren't really running away from traditional media, they're running away from traditional media content towards more interesting content that has developed outside traditional channels. It seems pretty basic, but this has nothing to do with the channel or distribution medium and everything to do with the content.

It's striking that HBO has not felt the need to find new channels for its content - instead people go to HBO because they find it interesting. As Larry David says, HBO is TV, but that hasn't stopped them from succeeding over and over again.

The cost to create a new channel far outweighs the cost to create new content. Creating new content is just harder but I think many of these distribution channels will quickly fail because they're pushing the same old stuff that people don't want.


Lachlan said...
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Lachlan said...

It used to be hugely annoying but at least the "Content is King" mantra from a few years ago was right. That's why I have a problem with Blog-infatuation which we posted on ages ago... the tools for blogging are just simplifed web-site design, it's only what people do with it (their content) that makes it interesting or valuable, or not (as is mostly the case!).

That said I do like lots of TV content but don't have the time or organisation to watch it when it's on. So the i-tuning of TV content is really great for me and does solve a problem. It's also personally more intuitive and more likely to get used than Tivo. I just wish I had more TV download content options right now, can't wait for what it'll be like in a year or so.

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