This presentation from IABM’s Annual AGM identifies the main digital transformation trends in M&E as well as the impact of COVID-19 on them.
In this week’s episode, we’re joined by Daniel De Beer of Solution Centre, based in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe is currently embracing an exciting new chapter in broadcasting, with rapid growth and expansion of new channels. Daniel talks us through how Solution Centre has prospered in the region since 1997, how he personally got involved in our industry and what he envisions for the future of broadcasting.
Marketing teams have transformed at pace over the last 12 months and adapted their strategies to ensure success in this new digital world.
While it is generally acknowledged that the broadcast industry roadmap leads to a fully IP-based infrastructure, there is still plenty of uncertainty regarding the exact route that will be taken to get there. Currently the industry can be characterised as being in an extended implementation phase which concurrently overlaps with the R&D efforts necessary to make IP workflows optimised throughout an organisation.
In the media and entertainment world, content is king and central to your business model – critical investments and revenue that must be secured. Content piracy is nothing new and the pervasive idea that “piracy is not a serious crime” still writes it off as nothing more than user misbehaviour. Commercial piracy today is a full-time job, stealing and reselling for profit, driving significant illegal business activities. The numbers speak for themselves: the value of pirate video services will exceed US$67 billion by 2023, according to Parks Associates.
In the past couple of years, consumers’ insatiable and growing demand has increased content consumption over streaming media. We have witnessed a barrage of new players launching streaming services into the market. Recent examples include the launch of Quibi and Peacock in April 2020, and HBO Max is planning to expand into Latin America by June 2021. The increasing demand has left content creators and owners to scramble for new or repurposed content for these platforms while meeting the platform’s standards in video and corresponding metadata. This critical metadata includes closed captions and, as is the case with video, closed captions must meet standards and style guides mandated by individual streaming platforms.
This narrative begins in 2006. One of the more forward-thinking European broadcasters began the search for a system to take their single national feed, that was funded through traditional ad break advertising, and produce just over 30 variants of this channel. Every channel (regional feed) would now include some regional advertising content, replacing the national advertising breaks at specific times of the day. Starfish Technologies was awarded the contract to design and supply this system. It was implemented using SDI based technology located at each of the regional distribution hubs, the majority of which were unmanned. This system worked well and generated a significant additional revenue stream, so the broadcaster requested an ‘upgrade’ to this system that would also enable local news bulletins and late changing schedules to be inserted into every regional feed. These requirements were best implemented by moving to a centralised architecture and building a complete regional channel system located at its main transmission centre. The first centralised Starfish Technologies system went live in 2009 and again proved reliable, commercially rewarding and with the significant benefit of providing viewers with locally relevant news content.
There has never been a more fragmented and competitive communications landscape than what we have today. Not only are there more products and services than ever before but there are considerably more routes to market. On top of that we are also seeing increasingly sophisticated and nuanced relationships between products/services and the customer they are aiming to engage with. Trying to cut through all of this with effective communications can be quite a challenge. Not an impossible one, but a challenge nonetheless.
Just as many companies have already done with business functions such as accounting, human resources, and IT, there are now very good reasons for outsourcing sales. It affords increased sales through rapid deployment and scalability; better overall risk management; and the ability to refocus existing resources on the core business, all of which result in a substantial increase in profitability.
This Regional Trends Report provides insight into the latest broadcast and media industry developments for the Americas region.