Sunday, May 13, 2007

Some consumer media lessons

Over the past 2 months, I've spend some time with experts from the consumer media industry, including folks who have done programming at MTV, Discovery Channel, F/X, etc. Here are some of the lessons I have learned from spending time with these experts:

  • You have to be relevant. Relevance comes from making things "local" in space and time.
  • You can present a national or international news story, but it's more relevant if you can tell me how it affects me or my community (or even makes me think about how it affects me/my community).
  • You've got to present current information, create the perception that things are "live," that this is happening now. If you can do that, you're raised the urgency and you can get me to pay more attention. Many tricks for doing that: put the date and time, show a ticking clock, show feeds/crawls of information.
  • Don't just re-broadcast content that's already available elsewhere. Consumers will seek you out if you provide compelling content that they can't find anywhere else.
  • In addition to original content, media organizations can provide value with editorial role--if you get syndicated content, filter it, package it, put your spin on it, do something to make it yours (and different from what people can get elsewhere).
  • Consumers like lists. Give me the top 5 or top 10 things to do.
  • Everything you present has to have some value for the consumer to get them to pay attention. Even branding/interstitials can and should be used as content (e.g. MTV).

More to follow...

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