I’ve long recognised that there is a category of technologies and trends that are “2/10 signals” or events; that is, technologies (and their underlying trends) which largely fail to live up to the ‘hype’ in the first two years of existence but that, when we look back ten years later, we see that technology represented a […]
For the past 24 months, I’ve been seeing signs that a unique strategic challenge is emerging, one which will significantly impact every industry, including media, before the end of this decade: demand singularity.
We can already see that a form of ‘meta-convergence’ is happening in nearly all consumer industries, in that more and more companies are trying to be all things to all people. They are trying to sell everything to everyone.
Coca-Cola no longer sells just cola – it sells water, fruit juices, energy drinks and teas/coffees. Pepsi Co. is now the largest US vendor of potato crisps and similar snacks. McDonalds no longer sells just burgers, it sells salads, yoghurts, cereals, and cafe-style coffee. Woolworths doesn’t just sell groceries, it offers banking, petrol, electrical and whitegoods, music (including iTunes cards).
Today, there was news that the eponymous watchmaker, Tag Heuer, was moving into the eye glasses market!
We’re seeing a similar meta-convergence in the media space.
Newspaper companies, like Fairfax, now offer music, video news, audio programs and, elsewhere, movies-on-demand. Web publications are moving into print and vice versa (e.g. Sensis/Trading Post). Search engines are moving into rich media and broadcast media (Yahoo! + Google). Electronic games companies are moving into cinema. Outdoor advertising companies are embedding mobile media capabilities. The list goes on.
The root cause of this trend is economic.
Companies are leveraging technological efficiencies to re-engineer traditional value/supply chains, in an effort to squeeze additional profit or growth through ‘economies of scope’ (i.e. cost savings achieved by increasing the variety of goods and services produced using existing infrastructure/staff).
This trend is likely to continue (and accelerate) for the remainder of this decade.
A key driver of News Corp’s current, aggressive Internet acquisition and growth strategy is Murdoch’s personal recognition that his “old media” empire is at serious risk of financial ruin and – worse – becoming irrelevant to a growing percentage of his target audience.
This awareness was spurred largely by the release of a research report, titled […]
Interesting story today in the Sydney Morning Herald about the decision by Channel Seven to synchronise its broadcast of two high-rating shows – Heroes and Prison Break – with that of their US TV premiere.
The stated objective of this move was to reduce the loss of audiences to DVD and (I suspect, more importantly) […]
Reports that News Corp has made overtures to Yahoo! about swapping MySpace for a 25% equity stake has led the New York Times to speculate about whether Yahoo! should exit the search business and, instead, contract Google to provide search capabilities (ironically, this would have the company performing a full-loop, as it was Google’s contract with […]
I write a regular column – Neely Ready- which appears in an (exellent) magazine, Australian Anthill.
How creative is your business?
Entrepreneurs and scientists use the concepts of ‘creativity’ and ‘innovation’ interchangeably. This is not surprising, as both play an integral role in the new product development process. They are not the same, however they do have a symbiotic relationship: each is largely useless without the other.
Creativity is the process of coming up with new ideas. Everyone is capable of being creative, and there is no single, definitive methodology for generating creative ideas.
Innovation, on the other hand, is a broader process of implementing a creative idea – or ‘applied creativity’. Innovation is intrinsically harder than creating ideas, and there is again no definitive methodology. However, it is the process of creativity – coming up with the spark of an idea that kick starts the new product development process – that most individuals and businesses believe they require assistance with (perhaps because creativity is seen as a behaviour, whereas innovation is seen as a process). […]
So why did I name this blog ‘3rd Horizon’? Because that’s kinda where I like to work.
Most companies are ruthlessly operationally-focussed – few more so than media companies, which tend to ‘live’ from ratings book to ratings book, interrupted only by monthly or quarterly sales figures. It is a tough, highly competitive world, so it […]
As many of you already know, I left my previous position with Austereo earlier this year, and have returned to the ‘coal face’, as it were.
After 2+ yrs of living and breathing the process of both devising and implementing a business case + strategy for launching an ‘interactive’ division within a traditional broadcast media company, […]