Stories That Belong on Digital and Stories That Don’t: Different Platforms, Different Content

The explosion of digital short form video is mind boggling in its depth, variety and reach. From network-supported comedy bits to user-created submissions becoming viral phenomena the audience, especially younger demos, is exponentially accepting the format. Digital video – be it a news clip that sparks national, or even global, conversation or the latest from a leading YouTube influencer – engages in ways unlike TV shows. Savvy broadcasters are starting to monetize these views and keep their localized audience engaged beyond a 22-minute duration, while understanding that 100 million views is a wholly different measurement than ratings success. TV’s storytelling ability – when it is good – engages viewers minute after minute, hour after hour, year after year, and is monetized over the long term. The quick-response cross-over opportunities in short-form content offer station groups a new avenue to audience loyalty, from linear/digital game shows to regional brand-driven digital content. Broadcasters exploring the digital waters face fundamental business-model questions: is a TV show the grail after digital successes? Or is it a distraction from monetizing the digital audience? Will short form migrate to long form at a greater rate going forward as some station group experts anticipate, and how will this shift impact local and regional broadcast opportunities? Our panel of speakers from across the industry spectrum addresses those issues and more in this compelling NATPE Station Group Summit session.