While much of the discussion around Apple’s forthcoming iTunes Radio is around its head-to-head competition with Pandora, this conversation is missing the larger opportunity. Radio advertising, with its $14 billion in annual ad revenue, is the real target here.
The 100+ year old institution of radio has been punished over the past decade. The first insult came with the introduction of Sirius and XM’s satellite radio services with hundreds of stations. This forced the traditional broadcast versions to be re-categorized as “terrestrial radio.” Next, the introduction of Pandora allowed users to create their own radio stations, in a virtual on-demand approach across many connected devices, including mobile phones. This was the new way of radio. So the now-terrestrial radio stations fired back with their own non-innovative innovation, HD-radio, which did little to pry lost listeners away from the new world.
When terrestrial radio was the only game in town, stations fought one another for radio budget dollars, based on the archaic Arbitron sampling rating system. But the modern technology radio battle will continue to be fought with real, attributable data, and massively improved targeting. No more audience inferences, no more “trust me since I take you to lunch” media buying. The new... Read more
It’s important to understand the difference between publishers and platforms when so many companies are now serving both roles. At OneScreen, we define a publisher as a company that makes its licensed or produced content directly available to its audience through its own channels, sites, and applications. A platform, on the other hand, enables a variety of different publishers to distribute their content (or their licensed content) through an “app store,” such as Apple’s App Store and Google Play.
Selling eBooks is war. When Apple introduced the iPad, the immediate debate began as to whether it would just destroy the Kindle outright. Barnes & Noble also would not "go gentle into that good night," and now a three-sided war is being fought, with different strategies and business models. Regardless, all parties have the goal of being able to generate the greatest amount of transactions on devices that people carry with them. And now the battle is being amped up.
While Apple's iBooks comes pre-loaded on every iPad, seemingly quietly, both Kindle and B&N rolled out their own eReader apps for the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. One review on iTunes of the Kindle app called it the "best kept app secret," which points out the significant missed opportunity to date. Kindle, from its inception, separated the service from the hardware business, and B&N followed suit. They each are taking the tactic of relinquishing a certain degree of control to the consumer, in order to gain business on whatever device that specific consumer uses. On the other side, don't expect to see Apple iBooks on your Kindle, ever. That is not how Apple works in general, and their approach benefits the consumer's... Read more
There's an important trend that we're all experiencing, but has not yet made the radars of most marketers. I call it 'Browser Blur.'
Browser Blur is the blurring of the lines between online and offline, between the web and the desktop (and, yes, I made it up).
From the Browser to the Desktop
On one hand, applications that pull content from the web are no longer sentenced to live inside the browser. Those prison walls are have been broken down. The best example of this is iTunes. Apple may not have "ads," but they certainly market plenty in the iTunes Store. I'd be willing to bet that a good number of people reading this are accessing Twitter from their the desktop without launching a browser via Tweetdeck, Twhirl or Seesmic.
Take a look through Dashboard Widgets on Apple's website. Brands from Virgin Atlantic to Petsmart to MSNBC have all created small branded applications that stream content to your computer without ever launching a browser. Microsoft has Gadgets (basically Widgets for the PC) in Vista and has hundreds of them available for download on their website.
This is an incredibly powerful tool for marketers because users choose to download these... Read more