Priceline spends $4.3 billion on digital ads each year.  It’s shifting to TV for the future.

Priceline is the travel industry’s largest digital advertiser.  It’s built its company using TV and digital advertising, but the majority has been on digital.  In 2017, it’s expected to spend $4.3 billion dollars on digital, according to Skift, an industry website that tracks spending within the travel category.  The vast majority of digital spend (estimated … Continue reading Priceline spends $4.3 billion on digital ads each year.  It’s shifting to TV for the future.

Is Google Fiber sputtering? Dropping 8 markets and new television services

Is Google Fiber struggling?  The rollout of high speed Gigabit internet has been slower than expected and the company has cut back on the markets where it’s installing.  In October, it scrapped plans to expand into 8 markets.  It’s been hampered by both the cost and time it takes to deploy, while competitors in impending … Continue reading Is Google Fiber sputtering? Dropping 8 markets and new television services

TV still #1 choice for news consumption, but the gap is narrowing

Only a third trust social media as a news source Half of all Americans report they get their news on television, but the gap with online is narrowing. 43% now say they often get their news online. The gap is just 1 points, narrowing from 19 points in 2015, according to a new survey from Pew … Continue reading TV still #1 choice for news consumption, but the gap is narrowing

Study: Media Measurement missing 66% of all video consumption

Global marketing company Omnicom handles ad services for more than 5,000 clients in over 100 countries.  They are a big deal in ad circles.  So, when they talk, people do listen.  Here’s what they’re saying: 66% of TV and Video on content consumed by Millennials and Gen Xers is not being captured by current media … Continue reading Study: Media Measurement missing 66% of all video consumption

Just how prevalent is social media for small businesses?

Just how prevalent is social media for small businesses?  It’s fair to say it’s nearly universal.  Nearly 87% of small business owners say they use Facebook for marketing, according to a new survey from G2 Crowd via eMarketer. So, how’s it going for them? There are mixed results here.  38% said it was the most … Continue reading Just how prevalent is social media for small businesses?

Facebook, Apple join the billion dollar club for spending on original video content

Everybody, it seems, wants to be in the TV business.  OK, it’s really the video business, but it’s the same thing the TV networks have been doing for years:  producing original television content. The WSJ reports that Facebook is looking to spend A BILLION DOLLARS on original video content for its Watch video platform.  Recently, … Continue reading Facebook, Apple join the billion dollar club for spending on original video content

Where did people turn for life-saving information in Hurricane Harvey? Local TV stations

If you doubted that local television is still important in people’s lives, consider this:  When Hurricane Harvey was threatening Texas, where did people turn for the latest information?  Local TV. 89% surveyed said local TV news was their top choice.  Their second choice?  Local TV station websites.  Their third choice?  National TV News. Study Results … Continue reading Where did people turn for life-saving information in Hurricane Harvey? Local TV stations

Partisan views on media more entrenched than ever

If anything, partisan views of the national news media have gotten even more entrenched… and the gap has widened, according to a national survey by Pew Research Center. While Democrat views on the impact of the national news media have grown more positive, Republicans have grown even more negative in their assessment of the media. … Continue reading Partisan views on media more entrenched than ever

We’re hiring serious journalists to do the important stories

Have you become disillusioned with the TV news business? Tired of the fluff and happy talk? We want serious, experienced reporters that are willing to take on the tough stories, dig deeper, and do the important journalism our town deserves. Here's the kicker: We're willing to pay for experience. If you're a recent college grad, … Continue reading We’re hiring serious journalists to do the important stories

Trump’s 2018 budget would end federal funding for public broadcasting

The draft budget, if approved, would cut the $445 million dollars the Corporation for Public Broadcasting currently earmarked as part of the omnibus bill approved for fiscal year 2019.  Instead, it would allocate just $30 million dollars. The $30 million would be to conduct “an orderly closeout of federal funding,” per the draft budget.  In … Continue reading Trump’s 2018 budget would end federal funding for public broadcasting

Who you trust more:  Advertising or News Media?

While we hear a constant drum beat that trust in the news media continues to drop, it’s not the same for advertising.  In fact, more people think ads are more honest than they were three years ago, according to a YouGuv survey in March. Trust but verify Still, 64% of US adults think there should … Continue reading Who you trust more:  Advertising or News Media?

Overall news consumption is up 18%

Overwhelming majority of consumption happens on TV Adults in the US spend more than 72.5 BILLION MINUTES consuming news during an average week.  The Nielsen folks say total new consumption across platforms was up 18% last year.  Broadcast TV (local and national) accounted for the biggest chunk of viewing (29.4 billion) followed by cable news … Continue reading Overall news consumption is up 18%

175 TV stations sell off spectrum, nearly 1,000 will move to new channels

A bunch TV stations got a windfall from the FCC’s spectrum auction. Some got so much they opted to go off the air forever and take the money and run. Altogether, 987 TV stations must change channels.   [ FULL LIST AFTER THE JUMP ] The spectrum auction raised $19.8 billion dollars for the government. … Continue reading 175 TV stations sell off spectrum, nearly 1,000 will move to new channels

A bad idea: Congress looks at taxing advertising

The Trump administration has put tax reform on the table for debate.  There are very few people that would argue what we have right now is working fine.  One of the things under discussion, however, is eliminating the business deduction for advertising. Businesses are able to deduct the cost of ordinary and necessary businesses expenses, … Continue reading A bad idea: Congress looks at taxing advertising

Internet advertising to surpass TV advertising, but…

For the first time, more dollars are being spent on internet advertising than on traditional television. That news comes from Zenith (a Publicis company) in taking a look at 2017 internet advertising dollars and projections.  “Internet advertising has contributed all of the growth in global ad spend since the beginning of the decade, and has … Continue reading Internet advertising to surpass TV advertising, but…

Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press

I put this up right outside my office door to remind everybody who walks into our TV station how important it is that journalists do their job. The Bill of Rights warrants Congress shall make no law abridging the Freedom of Speech, or of the Press.  The founders saw journalists role as so important it … Continue reading Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press

Where to get the best ROI for TV ads

Story worth reading by Jason Lynch in Ad Week.  It details a Nielsen study done for CBS that looks at the best place to put ads for the best ROI.  The short answer (beyond news and live sports) is sitcoms. Also worth noting this exchange.  When advertisers talk about reaching Millennials, they typically talk about … Continue reading Where to get the best ROI for TV ads

A huge number of Millennial Men aren’t watching any TV on any device

  How big a deal is this cord-cutting thing for TV?  It may depend on who you ask.  The number of people cutting out cable has slowed, but it’s still a growing number.  But when you slice and dice those dropping (cord-cutters) or never subscribing (cord-nevers), this new report shows one demographic that’s cutting at … Continue reading A huge number of Millennial Men aren’t watching any TV on any device

Facebook is taking on the music industry

YouTube is the world’s largest music service.  With Facebook’s big push into video, the social media services wants in on the music action, according to Bloomberg Technology. It’s important to Facebook for several reasons:  There’s money to be made there. There’s an audience to be gained. User-generated videos often contains music that neither Facebook nor … Continue reading Facebook is taking on the music industry

Facebook launches “TV app” and makes big changes to video in newsfeeds

Here’s Facebook’s next big foray into the world of video:  a new Facebook video app for TV.  Facebook announced the app will roll out soon to app stores for Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Samsung Smart TV, with more platforms to come. With the app, Facebook says you’ll be able to watch videos shared … Continue reading Facebook launches “TV app” and makes big changes to video in newsfeeds

Even people that get their news from Facebook don’t believe it

A majority of adults say they see news on Facebook, but they don’t trust it.  That’s the topline from an Ipsos Public Affairs survey for BuzzFeed News. Broadcast TV news (as opposed to cable news) was the top place US consumers saw news at 56%, but Facebook was right alongside at 55%.  But when the … Continue reading Even people that get their news from Facebook don’t believe it

Trouble in Paradise? Digital ad spending growth rates plummet

Standard Media Index (SMI) unveiled its review of online digital ad spend in 2016 and the numbers show some warning signs for publishers. After years of high double-digit growth in online ad sales, the market slipped into mid-single digits in 2016.  By 4Q 2016, the number slipped into the low single digits, and in December, the … Continue reading Trouble in Paradise? Digital ad spending growth rates plummet

75 million U.S. homes now have internet connected TV

Nearly three-quarters of broadband-connected homes now have a TV connected to the internet.  The adoption of internet-connected TVs has mirrored the adoption of broadband in the US, but has slowed recently as more homes were connected. According to new research from The Diffusion Group (TDG), the penetration of Internet-connected TVs among US broadband households has … Continue reading 75 million U.S. homes now have internet connected TV

Is your TV set gathering and sharing your habits?

I knew my “Smart TV” was a little different when I got my first one and discovered that just like a computer, it might sometimes reboot for no particular reason. I certainly never thought it was listening to me and sharing what I said. Things certainly have changed now the TV’s are connected to the … Continue reading Is your TV set gathering and sharing your habits?

Broadband Only homes rising, 15% get TV without cable or satellite

  In 2013, just 9% of US residents did not subscribe to pay-TV (cable or satellite)  to get television.   By the third quarter of 2016, that number had risen to 15%. That equates to 17 million broadband-only homes, according to TDG (The Diffusion Group) as reported in MediaPost.  Park Associates shows the trending:  last year, … Continue reading Broadband Only homes rising, 15% get TV without cable or satellite

Cord Cutting and Skinny Bundles: More hype than hope?

Cord cutting is real and it’s gaining traction, but not as quickly as predicted.  Nielsen’s latest report shows homes that subscribe to pay-TV (cable or satellite) is down 1.7% from last January.  That’s hardly a tidal wave of cord cutters. At the same time, the number of TV households actually grew by 1.7%.  Yes, overall … Continue reading Cord Cutting and Skinny Bundles: More hype than hope?

Fake news might actually be a good thing for real journalism

Everybody is up in arms about fake news these days. Politicos that think it swung the election are crying foul. Advertisers that had their ads show up on fake news sites are unhappy. Journalists talk about how it continues to undermine public trust. Wait a minute, though. How does fake news hurt journalism? I mean, … Continue reading Fake news might actually be a good thing for real journalism

Paul Dughi named as one of 16 “Media Influencers” by Local Media Today

I was honored to be included in the list of 16 "media influencers" as named in the 2017 monthly edition of Local Media Today, by the Local Media Association (an industry trade association of more than 2,400 newspaper, TV, radio, pure plays and other media partners). It's a pretty impressive group to be included in and I was … Continue reading Paul Dughi named as one of 16 “Media Influencers” by Local Media Today

Bipartisan investigation demands answers on cable TV’s “misleading fees and sales practices”

In a bi-partisan effort, Senators from both parties are calling on Charter Communications (which also acquired Time Warner) and Comcast to stop what they call “misleading placement of fees on customers’ bills, and inadequate advertising disclosure for service promotions.” They've asked before and say they've never got an answer to their complaints even after holding … Continue reading Bipartisan investigation demands answers on cable TV’s “misleading fees and sales practices”

Now ransomware is showing up on a Smart TV?

Wow.  Just wow. Darrn Cauthon is a software developer.  On Christmas day, he says, a family member was using their Smart TV and downloaded an app to watch a movie.  The TV set froze up. When it rebooted, this notice appeared claiming to be from FBI Director James Comey. Full of grammatical errors, it said … Continue reading Now ransomware is showing up on a Smart TV?

Cord cutters are cutting cable AND broadband internet at home

First it was cutting landline phones for mobile.  Next, cord cutters dropped cable TV and opted for streaming devices.  Now, in what Ovum researchers call “triple cord cutting,” we’re seeing people start to trim their broadband connections at home and use cell phones to do their online viewing. “Cord-cutting started in landlines and gave way … Continue reading Cord cutters are cutting cable AND broadband internet at home

Digital Advertising taking 72 cents of every new ad dollar spent

In 2017, digital gets a big boost, but... TV still dominates ad spend and is still growing. TV ad spend in the United States continues to grow – despite what you may have heard about digital.  Group M, the world’s largest advertising buyer, has projected an increase in ad spending on television of 4.1% for … Continue reading Digital Advertising taking 72 cents of every new ad dollar spent

Bulls-eye marketing: Finding the sweet spot

  To maximize the effectiveness of your advertising, you have to place it squarely in the target for consumers. You already know it’s not enough to have a great product.  It’s not enough to assemble your unique selling proposition - what I call your Weapon of Mass Distinction.  It’s not enough to have a great … Continue reading Bulls-eye marketing: Finding the sweet spot

Digital marketing needs dramatic improvement

Almost three-quarters of marketers surveyed say they are unhappy with the state of online advertising.  73% of brand marketers and media agency executives say the consumer experience with digital marketing needs to be improved. The report is from the IAB (Internet Advertising Bureau) that’s bullish on digital media.  In its study of 280+ brand marketers … Continue reading Digital marketing needs dramatic improvement

Is the #BoycottNFL movement actually making a difference

The Sunday night NFL game this past weekend had another bad outing. OK, so Houston-Indy isn’t the best game going, but it drew the smallest number of viewers in about five years. So far this season, NBC’s games — run in primetime — are down 17% from last year. Through six weeks of the season, NFL games in total are down … Continue reading Is the #BoycottNFL movement actually making a difference

YouTube, Facebook are now trying to take over your TV set

I don’t know if you’ve noticed this thing that showed up on YouTube a while back.  When you’re playing a video on a mobile device and you’re in the vicinity of a TV set that’s on the same WiFi network, you can hit the Cast icon and watch the video on your TV set. That’s … Continue reading YouTube, Facebook are now trying to take over your TV set

Comcast gets caught charging customers for stuff they never ordered and hit with largest FCC fine ever given

Comcast hit with the largest civil penalty ever given to a cable operator about consumer complaints and ordered to put in place a compliance plan  “In some complaints, subscribers claimed that they were billed despite specifically declining service or equipment upgrades offered by Comcast. In others, customers claimed that they had no knowledge of the … Continue reading Comcast gets caught charging customers for stuff they never ordered and hit with largest FCC fine ever given

Majority don’t trust media, but one source does better than all the others

We’ve all heard that people don’t trust the media anymore.  Heck, I’m in the media and I view everything through a skeptic’s lens these days.  Through it all though, one media source continues to do better than all the others: Local TV news operations. The numbers for all media sources have plummeted to historic lows. An … Continue reading Majority don’t trust media, but one source does better than all the others

A billion views a month, but YouTube still isn’t making money

YouTube, now 11 years old, has made a huge impact in bringing user-generated content to the masses.  It has yet to make a profit. According to various reports, YouTube’s revenue was pegged at just north of $4 billion dollars in 2015.  Sounds great until you put it up against the annual cost of running YouTube.  … Continue reading A billion views a month, but YouTube still isn’t making money

See how Facebook labels your political views: Liberal, Moderate, or Conservative

You know Facebook is gathering information on you all the time, right?  What you click on, what you like, what you share is all compiled in some hard drive somewhere.  With that information, Facebook makes decisions about what to show you – or what not to show you. So it only makes sense that, based … Continue reading See how Facebook labels your political views: Liberal, Moderate, or Conservative

Americans spend 47% of time awake on TV, PC, Tablets, or phones

According to new research from The Diffusion Group (TDG), consumers spend a lot of time each week using a ‘screen’ — a television, personal computer, tablet, or mobile phone.  It now tops 50 hours with TV topping the list.   50 hours a week! TV is still the King Traditional TV time still gobbles up … Continue reading Americans spend 47% of time awake on TV, PC, Tablets, or phones

Olympic streaming is up, TV viewing down – NBC doing “make goods” for advertisers

TV ratings from the summer Olympics are down.  Live streams across various platforms, though, are way up. NBC reports a 232% increase in live streams on August 10th versus the same day of the Olympics in 2012.  On that day in 2016, live streaming topped ONE BILLION MINUTES through the NBC Sports and NBCOlympics.com app. … Continue reading Olympic streaming is up, TV viewing down – NBC doing “make goods” for advertisers

Customers dumping satellite & cable TV at an ever-growing rate

There’s no denying this cord-cutting thing is real. BTIG Research is the research arm of BTIG brokerage and fund services company which advises investors on key markets.  They looked at the top MVPDs – that’s industry jargon for “multi-channel video programming distributor.  In other words, what people know as cable or satellite TV companies. BTIG’s … Continue reading Customers dumping satellite & cable TV at an ever-growing rate

Olympic rule 40 prohibits athletes from marketing themselves during the Olympics

Yet many Olympic athletes live below the poverty line Despite the TV glory, a surprising number of Olympic athletes live below the poverty line. They typically self-fund their training and efforts, scraping together an income from limited prize money, part-time jobs, and sponsor contracts. Selling sausages to train for the Olympics We hear about the $8 … Continue reading Olympic rule 40 prohibits athletes from marketing themselves during the Olympics

Ratings for Olympic games are off significantly

The pageantry in Rio for the 2016 Olympic Games has begun, but viewers so far are watching less than in recent years.  Friday night’s opening ceremonies, which NBC broadcast on a one-hour delay, were down 28 percent from the 2012 opening ceremony in London. Lowest Ratings in 24 Years If that weren’t enough, Ad Week … Continue reading Ratings for Olympic games are off significantly

Washington Attorney General sues Comcast over 1.8 million violations of Consumer Protection Act

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson says Comcast isn’t playing fair with its customers.  In fact, he says Comcast committed more than 1.8 million violations of the state’s Consumer Protection Act, citing improper credit screening practices and charging fees for service calls. In addition, Ferguson says Comcast deceived customers for what he calls a “near-worthless” … Continue reading Washington Attorney General sues Comcast over 1.8 million violations of Consumer Protection Act

For $86 Billion Dollars, you can get TV stations to go off-the-air

Phase 1 of the Spectrum Auction has been completed.  The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is trying to clear 126 MHz of broadcast spectrum for use by the wireless industry.  The spectrum would come from TV stations currently broadcasting in that spectrum.  They’d give it up in exchange for a one-time cash payment to go off … Continue reading For $86 Billion Dollars, you can get TV stations to go off-the-air

Local news most trusted by news consumers

We’ve read the stories that majority of people get their news from social media.  We’ve also read how trust in the newspaper and TV news media has eroded.  But how does social media do on the trust scale when it comes to news? The short answer is that social media scores the worst scores on … Continue reading Local news most trusted by news consumers

Subscription, on-demand video services hit important milestone (but Live TV viewing is still King)

You may not have heard the term OTT before.  It means “over-the-top” delivery of video programming – through a set-top box or internet-connected TV.  But I’ll bet you know some of the products and have even used them. Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu are OTT products and the news today is that the number of … Continue reading Subscription, on-demand video services hit important milestone (but Live TV viewing is still King)

Confidence in newspapers, TV news hits all-time lows

The folks at Gallup have been surveying everything about American society for decades. One advantage to that is tracking how people think about key issues over time. This June, when they asked about people’s confidence in newspapers, the numbers hit an all-time low. Television News wasn’t far behind, ranking just one point above newspapers. Sadly, … Continue reading Confidence in newspapers, TV news hits all-time lows

Senate investigating cable and satellite TV customer service and billing amid horror stories

The US Senate called for an investigative report and will hold hearings on cable and satellite TV customer service and billing practices. The report will be released at the hearings. Execs from Time Warner, Charter, AT&T, Dish Network, and Comcast are expected to testify. They’re likely to get blasted. Horror Stories Abound (Here are a … Continue reading Senate investigating cable and satellite TV customer service and billing amid horror stories

Connected TVs: Streaming first, live TV second

Whether it’s a Smart TV with the internet and some services baked in, a Blue-Ray player, Roku, Google, FireTV, AppleTV or one of the dozen other internet-connected devices, US households continue to connect their television sets to the Internet at a rapid pace.  A study from Frank N. Magid Associates shows that nearly three-fourths of … Continue reading Connected TVs: Streaming first, live TV second

Next generation of Smart TVs could spell trouble for Local TV stations

This has been coming for some time, but it should send chills down the spines of local TV execs everywhere:  a TV screen that when you turn it on doesn’t start on a channel, but gives you a listing of everything available.  If you’re local, you’ll probably be tucked inside a box that says “Local … Continue reading Next generation of Smart TVs could spell trouble for Local TV stations

Is this the new norm: the five screen family?

Last week, I looked around the room and noticed an interesting thing.  Maybe you’re seeing this at your home as well.  We were watching the NBA playoffs on TV.  My wife was on her I-pad and so was I.  My son was on his laptop.  I’m sure if my grandson was there, he’d be staring … Continue reading Is this the new norm: the five screen family?

If you could only pick one: Pay TV or Streaming?

When forced to choose between pay TV (cable, satellite) and streaming services, people that currently use both react differently according to their age. The younger the adult, the more likely they are to choose TV streaming services over pay-TV, and vice versa. So the big news is… young people stream, older folks watch TV. New … Continue reading If you could only pick one: Pay TV or Streaming?

Internet Video views: Beware data without context

I am a huge proponent of the potential of online video, OTT (over-the-top) video, and online news in general.  Both from a consumer standpoint and a producer, online video is a force to be reckoned with.  But this breathless reporting about video views, without context, needs to stop.  We all know that data can be … Continue reading Internet Video views: Beware data without context

Analyzing $12 billion dollars of actual ad spend and tracking ROI shows surprising results

Accenture Strategy released a three year study from its database of $12 billion dollars in marketing expenditures.  It tracked ad buys in 6 categories from 20 major national brands.  It’s one of the most in-depth, real-life studies, of what happens to brands that shift dollars from television to digital, either in isolation or in combination. … Continue reading Analyzing $12 billion dollars of actual ad spend and tracking ROI shows surprising results