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Bell Fund releases new media survivor's guide for broadcasters

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Technology/New Products/VOIP
TORONTO - Taking a closer look at current models, metrics and tools-of-the-trade that can help broadcasters make strategic business decisions about television show websites, iTV and Mobile TV, "Fiscal Reality Television - a Survivor's Guide to New Media Business Intelligence" examines the ways in which broadcasters can get value from their interactive assets and profitably meet the interactive expectations of their audiences.

The guide is an extension of Bell Fund's previous research study "Beyond Ratings" (July 2003) which identified a preliminary checklist of metrics for broadcasters, producers and advertising agencies.

"As new media becomes mainstream, and traditional television faces a mid-life crisis, there is no better time for broadcasters to capitalize on interactive audiences, deep data and all associated advertising opportunities," says media and entertainment strategist Catherine Warren, the author of the report in the news release. "Online fans in particular represent tremendous untapped potential."

Advertising remains the dominant revenue model, yet most TV show sites still do not have ads. The report explores the expectations of advertisers, the metrics that exist and are needed, advertising models, tracking and formats. Fiscal Reality Television shows broadcasters how they can capitalize on their strengths as leaders in both compelling media content and premier advertising space.

But advertising revenue is not the only advantage of interactive content. The research reveals how savvy broadcasters are leveraging their assets and benefiting through various other measures such as mining business intelligence, establishing fan relationships, off-loading other cost centers to online divisions and supporting their core programming by using online activities to market on-air content.

"Ironically, broadcasters generally lag behind other sectors when it comes to e-business, yet they have perhaps the best original business model to exploit for e-business," adds Warren. Fiscal Reality Television highlights other industries' noteworthy approaches to e-business and their relevance to broadcasting business models.

A joint initiative of Bell Canada and the Bell Fund, this study combines in-depth interviews with leading industry and e-business executives. Researching industry issues, knowledge sharing and training are part of the mandate of the Bell Broadcast and New Media Fund. As the report explores the potentially lucrative relationship between interactive advertising and strategic advances in broadcasting, the Bell Fund's next step is to organize a training initiative to examine the issues confronting broadcasters and advertisers and the solutions that will benefit broadcasters, sales departments, advertising agencies and new media producers.

For the full report, click here.

The Bell Broadcast and New Media Fund invests $6 million annually in the development and production of new media digital projects associated with Canadian television programs, and has funded 287 projects in the past seven years totaling $26.7 million. The Bell Fund is supported through contributions from Bell ExpressVu.
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