Monday, October 23, 2006

“NBC 2.0” Is All About “Engagement”

Continued digital disruption and seeming nonstop erosion of “broadcast” must have had something to do with the recently announced NBC 2.0. The initiative includes plans to slash expenses by $750 million and cut 5% of its workforce, to help the TV and movie giant with its transition from traditional analog media to digital.

But is “engagement” the real rationale behind NBC 2.0, or at least a huge part of it? AdAge this morning quotes one insider off the record:

"It's more that people in the $75,000-income households are working late, and reality and game shows attract lower-income households," one high-level media consultant cited as being behind the rationale. NBC said as part of its strategy it will look to develop advertising metrics beyond simple ratings, which may highlight household income as well as engagement.
In hindsight, the Consumer Engagement Conference speech from Alan Wurtzel, president, Research and Media Development, NBC, now makes a lot more sense. My colleague Sandra Parrelli paraphrased this quote during Wurtzel’s keynote in September:
Media executives have no choice but to adapt to changes now. Why wait? With the endless list of new technologies to consider – digital downloads, digital video, etc., industry executives must try to listen to customers while addressing accountability and must find a way to measure it. The media industry today is exciting and scary, because we are truly redefining the rules of measurement - not because they want to, but because they have to…If we don’t change direction soon we’ll end up where we are going.
I heard some interesting NPR commentary over the weekend, connecting NBC’s bold moves to the management culture of its parent, GE. That culture and its expectations must be very different from ABC, CBS and Fox.

(Photo credit: tenkai2002 via Flickr's Web 2.0 Oh No gallery.)


Post a Comment

<< Home