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Media Intelligence : 2008 Intelligence
For information on your sector go to www.mediabiznet.com.au subscription TV Collaboration in a cross platform market DamianKeogh, General Manager, Sales and Marketing, MCn explains why Subscription TV is perfectly placed to engage across platforms. How has Subscription TV been keeping up with the rapid pace of change in the industry over the past year? The big thing of note is that STV in Australia is enjoying accelerated growth. The two main service providers – Foxtel in metro areas and Austar in regional areas – have both enjoyed 12 months of very strong growth, growing about ten percent. As subscribers increase, our share of viewing increases and the golden rule of television advertising around the world, is that the revenue follows eyeballs, and we have been getting lots of eyeballs. We have certainly extended our online off ering in the past 12 months and now represent 18 of our channel websites. We are now in the process of putting video media players on a lot of those sites. A lot of them are relaunching with improved content, particularly with a focus on audio visual content, so we are off ering a lot more integrated advertising opportunities across both the channels and online. We are also seeing an increased take-up with Foxtel IQ which has the ability to one-touch record and time shift viewing. One of the exciting things we are off ering with that is video on-demand advertising. What sort of impact have the changes in cross media ownership laws had on Subscription TV? The cross media ownership changes haven’t had a direct impact on us, although what we have seen with consolidation of Fairfax increasing their ownership of certain things, is that this whole cross media off ering is going to continue to develop. We are quite happy towork collaboratively with anyone. We have done some work in the past with Nova, and in particular we do a number of things with NewsLtd – the newspapers, online and the magazines. We off ered multi-tiered packages to the market for ConfidentialTV, Confi dential online and in the newspaper – Samsung bought one of those. The beauty of our off ering, is that our sales team all work together, and fundamentally we are all one company. I think that certainly our on-air and online off ering is a lot easier for people to understand. What about WebTV and IPTV? How will this kind of technology impact on STV? Our view of this kind of thing, is to look at the opportunities fi rst, and worry about the challenges later, and I think that the opportunities are really interesting. There is no doubt that in terms of audio visual content, Australia is further on the cusp of opening up the long tail of content. Twelve years ago we didn’t have STV. Wewere slaves to four or fi ve free-to-air channels. Now we have tremendous choice in Subscription TV and that choice will continue to grow. More and more channels will continue to come on board the platform as further satellites and further bandwidth become available to serve the interests of niche audiences. Foxtel has trialed a Foxtel-by-broadband product with the ability to download quite fresh program content from channels intoa web-type experience. It is a service that off ers subscribers of the main service another opportunity to source content on demand. It will potentially allow subscribers of Foxtel and Austar access to a massive amount of content on demand. MEDIA Trends + Strategy 77