Jeff is announcing today in his weekly show, a new project – Pulver.tv. The project is an online TV channel, broadcasting 16 hours a day, with original and syndicated content. The channel is delivered over the Internet, using Tricaster and Blogtv technologies. Total cost of ownership is way below the cost of commercial broadcasting systems.
This is another example to the effect of democratization of content distribution on the media industry. From an industry relaying on monopolistic screen ownership, to fragmented viewership, where everyone can create their own show.
So, how can Jeff and his team get a competitive advantage on all the other video channels?
Here are my thoughts:
1. Content strategy – create great shows, syndicate the best ones, and become a channel of quality content. It doesn’t mean it has to have BBC like, B&W documentary on the sex life of Japanese monkeys. It means that they need to find what is good content for THEIR audience. Complex? sure, that’s why it is fun.
2. Community – a stream of content have a unique attribute – it is time based. Meaning, I can see a show at a certain time, with all the rest of viewers. I strongly believe that online video lost a key social aspect of TV – the campfire. when everyone see content when they want, they miss the feeling of community that the living room provided in the past. An online TV channel can solve this problem. The Ning group is also a step in the right direction.
3. Marketing– yes, it all adds up to that. Marketing, in a broad sense, is, IMHO, the make or break point of this initiative. Pulver.TV needs a brand that people would relate to – and understand what it represents. Is it a geek channel? An online answer to HBO? A political channel? A general sign of quality? Segmentation, branding, and smart business development strategy are at the core of such a project.
It is a very interesting experiment, and I wish Jeff, and all the team a lot of luck!