The afternoon session at the PROMAX&BDA 2004 comprised of four presentations. Jill Lindeman, Sr Account Director, BBC Broadcast kicked off the session. The subject she handled was: ‘Has the 30-sec spot had its days?’ John Ridgway and Jon Griffin followed her with a presentation on ‘Branding Broadcast Genres’.
Media evolution demands new ways of communication: Jill Lindeman
Lindeman began the session with the need to look into new ways of communication. She presented her point substantiated in a three pointer – compression, connectivity and control. She explained, “By compression, I mean information overload and explosion in the new forms of media. The audience is bombarded with too many messages from too many forms of media and the result is frustration, which leads to audience switch off.”
Connectivity implied that television was no longer a high-reach medium to get to the audience. Today new mediums like broadband and various initiatives in the digital space have filled the scene, giving the audience many more options. And, the audience is comfortable with the options too.
This led to the point of control: “We are no longer in control of communication, if we ever were. Today the audience is in complete control.”
She took the discussion forward to audience response. Living room habits, according to her, indicate that viewers are hardwired, they are comfortable sampling different channels and they understand the grammar of television well. Segregating the kinds of audience today, she further explained that the viewers today are the ones who keep appointments, the considered surfers and the young upcoming generation of television viewers, the super surfers.
In all, she established that the need was to look at different forms of communication where messages were innovatively but subtly sent across to the viewers, not just in a manner that will register with him but in a manner that can be used again and again.
With this she spoke of sponsorships, product placement, advertiser funded programming and new ways of advertising like interstitials and interactive advertising.
She left the audience saying, “Old habits die hard, so the 30-second ad days are still here but technologies like PVR are going to be too big too soon and that is what we have to think about.”
Station IDs give the channel an identity: Ridgway and Griffin
Ridgway and Griffin shared with the audience what they do best: give the channel an image. Sharing the different ways of treating different genres, the duo took the audience through the nitty-gritty of various genres and the factors that play a role in each.
Explaining in general, Griffin said, “It is always important to have two plans of action. Push the one you believe in and just in case, have the back-up ready.”
They explained that in sports, the important aspects to look at where lies the essence of the sport and bring out factors like sound, the action and the images that would match with the sport.
News branding too had some similarities to sports. Credibility, clarity of information, brand positioning and brand relationships to most channels were important along with expandability in the broadcast medium.
Explaining more on logo development, look development and the factors that play a major role here, they spoke more on multi-format branding. “It is important to also see how the brand will be adapted across various media and platform.”
They explained that the logo has to be such that it comfortably fit in print, interactive and broadcast medium. The various genres that cover here are talk shows, sitcoms, dramas, magazines, game shows and specials and award shows amongst others. “Each have to be treated differently,” Ridgway concluded.