Monday, February 13, 2017

Marketing Managers: 3 Ways to Keep Customers Tuned into Streaming

As a marketer working in television, you know that the industry is changing and the competitors are increasing each day. I’m a marketing graduate student at Northwestern University and someone with experience in media, and I have found two articles on the streaming television industry highlighting how your channel can be the best in the business.

In Brian Barrett’s Article, “The World Just Moved One Step Closer to Cord-cutter Utopia” for Wired Magazine, Barrett highlights the newest technologies in the streaming television industry. He emphasizes a trend in simplicity, such as being able to switch between all your television streaming accounts without all the hassle. He also mentions a growing number of users sticking to an antenna for national broadcast television, to complement their streaming accounts. While he recognizes that many barriers to this simple switching remain, he believes this is what customers want and therefore, where the industry is going.

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Nathan McAlone from Business Insider speculates on who could be the next biggest competitor in television streaming, YouTube, in his article “How YouTube Could Win TV.” McAlone says that YouTube is rumored to be working on a paid television streaming service called “Unplugged.” While Unplugged will be entering a crowded market, McAlone says that it will succeed if the company avoids technical issues in its launch. Also, he suggests that YouTube leverage its parent company Google’s vast amounts of viewer data for more personalized watching and advertising.

Based on my review of the two article and my relevant studies at Northwestern, I have come up with three action items marketing managers in the television industry can use today to make sure their products keep up with consumer trends. They are:

  • Test Streaming First - Customers have trusted their cable to work at all times for decades now, and they carry that trust into this new streaming realm…so, work out any glitches before the product launch.
  • Simple Works Best - Many streaming TV watchers also take advantage of free national channels through an old-fashioned antenna, so make sure switching TV inputs doesn’t require a Ph.D. and that your customers know it’s easy to switch.
  • Make it Mobile - More streaming services are entering the mix that already have vast amounts of experience in mobile (such as YouTube's “Unplugged”); if your company can’t keep up, you’ll be on your way out.

While the streaming television industry will no doubt continue transitioning, these are just a few steps brands can take today to make sure they can keep up with competitors.

Rachel Williams

I’m an aspiring brand strategist, currently pursuing an M.S. degree in Integrated Marketing Communications at Northwestern University, with an expected graduation of December 2017. I was a local news producer, but now I’m back on the marketing side of media, with a special interest in the changing landscape of the television industry. You can connect with me on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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