More Choices Would Improve ABC's Online Programming
Following up his not so positive opinion of ABC's move to offer shows online for free, Todd Copelvitz (yes, you will be hearing a lot more from him) offers ABC five suggestions on how they could have, and still can, make the offering better and more inline with people's media consumption habits. For Copelvitz, as it is for us, it's about choice. Provide people choices. Todd says ABC should offer their programming in multiple formats. Not just ad-supported online of pay-per-download from iTunes but provide a full gamut of choices from pay to free, from TV to cell phone. Let the consumer choose to pay for ad-free TV or ad-supported TV. Let them choose the sponsors they want to hear from as Weatherbug does. Adding to that, make the commercial specific to the medium through which it is delivered. TV gets bog bold production. Cell phone gets smaller, more interactive version.
Also, ABC, as it has done with its proprietary player, should not make it impossible to skip commercials. He suggests that with proper metrics to determine which ads get skipped and which don't will make for far better and more effective advertising overall. Lastly, he suggest ABC, and all networks for that matter, make available the shows they canceled that still have un-aired episodes in the can. Too many shows are canceled that have small but avid fans. There is a business opportunity here to maximize revenue from even the smallest of audiences.
We'd offer another choice. As an incentive to the pay-per-view model (no matter the medium), we'd suggest offering programming ahead of its normal TV broadcast slot. If viewers are rabid enough, they might even pay a premium. Or at least agree to some sort of Slate-like adview in exchange for free access. Yes, it's all about choice and control. It's not going away and the first network that fully realizes this will make all others a bunch of poor, struggling wannabes.