IPG Surfing Is Next Big Wave

Attention, TV-promo gurus: Use static text. That way, it can still be read while viewers are trying to rewind or fast-forward through your spot. That was one of the recommendations of a new study on promoting TV in the digital age.

The study of 1,200 digital cable or satellite subs, by consultant Frank Magid for broadcast and cable promotion/design association Promax&BDA, also advised promoters not to count on random surfing because subs tend to surf the interactive program guide (IPG) first, then go directly to the show. Not surprisingly, the flip side of that advice was to place topical listings on those IPGs.
Given that he was preaching to the choir, we expect company President Frank Magid got an "amen" for the finding that "nine of 10 viewers still say they depend on on-air spots to learn about what's new on TV and two-thirds list TV as their most important source for information about what to watch on TV, far and away more than any other source."
Nonetheless, the survey shows declines in channel surfing and increased time-shifting, which means also going elsewhere to promote, including on-line and magazines.
The survey was unveiled at the association's annual convention in New York.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.