So, the media world based on scarcity of information is about to collapse. Advertisers and their agencies will have to cope with a chaotic transition period with a highly fragmented web audience and a lack of qualitative inventory. The theory of Bob Garfield is 2 years old but seems still futuristic. The time spent watching TV per household doesn’t decrease yet in Europe and in the US and while where a talking about chaos and perfect storm, Marc Cuban recently writes “As it turns out, based on data for January of 2007, the more things change, the more they stay the same.”
I suppose that eventually, broadcast TV audiences will erode and we can’t ignore that the web audience is fragmented. But when I look at the top tens in several european countries, I see so much similarities that I conclude that if you want to stay a strong player you need to (if you have the means):
– Force the user to use your services: it’s the case of ISPs proposing their portal sites as default page or Microsoft pushing services through IE. Even if the surfers become more and more internet savvy, all those sites keep very high net ratings and reaches
– If you’re offline media-orginated, play on complementarity between on and offline on content offering and find synergies in communication
– Seek for catalyzation (each extra user brings extra content… thus extra value) knowing that web 2.0 still offers something like a first (succesful) mover advantage: It will be very tough to make a succes out of a me-too of WL messenger, youtube, dailymotion, wikipedia and probably Twitter without a major differentiator.
– Become a global role model (easy to say, very hard to do): sites who managed to give (even if it’s a long time ago) a structuration of the internet browsing (yahoo! was the first and google the second) and took through that a very strong place still appear in almost every top tens
This makes me believe that, if the internet audience is unstable, it’s mainly on the right side of the long tail that the lack of stability occurs.
EDIT: also read “TV is dead, long live the TV” on wired