[Notes from the 2006 Digital Media Conference]
Ok, I missed the first part of this panel saying “HI” to a few people on the break, but here’s what I heard during the second half…In general, the consumer now has complete control over their television viewing habits and the advertisers need to respect that. The 1980-2000 generation is not really watching tv screens and is much more interested in dealing with content that they’ve generated and in sharing it thereby building community.
Colin Dixon: The traditional thirty second spot does not work anymore. So how then do we reach the consumer?
Mark Walsh: Advertising will cease to be intrusive and become more of an opt-in. Refusal to share personal info online may result in a clunky entertainment experience and those who do will have a richer and more satisfying online experience. What new search engine will deliver what we want in entertainment? Who’s going to be the source? Speech recognition is the next UI and could be an important future search technology. European ads are more sexy and funny than here. Agencies need to get back to persuading using humor, rather than hitting us over the head; this will be a real challenge. People love dumb stuff (i.e. the “Paris Hiltonization” effect) , but Darwin was right too…Entertainment that is ‘smart’ will appeal to people looking for smart entertainment.
Davina Kent: Let’s give the consumer the opportunity to tell us what kind of advertising they actually want. The average length of these new targeted on-demand messages will be 2-4 minutes. In general, people still want to consume content on the television, but the content could still come from the internet, especially if the media search element works well. (Tivo is partnering with Comcast and positioning itself as the premium content choice.) In the near-term the consumers will be the winners and the losers will be the companies who don’t think about the consumer first…
Marsh Marshall: From a privacy perspective, are you being careful with the information I’m giving you? Search systems used in Blink, Flickr and Delicious can eventually be far more powerful than Google is now. The recent proliferation of communication tools is a key driver of the media industry. The editorial function of the great newspapers is under threat. The technology is enabling a new generation to explore information in a new way.
Andrew Nachison: Services that figure how to “connect” and not control consumers will be the winners of tomorrow. Believe it or not, our research shows that young people have a massive and passionate interest in news and politics, but they consume it in a brand new way.