Industry happenings at Yellow, Richards Partners, Yahoo, Kargo, Lightbox, Uno Loco and Mazda.
Marketing, advertising & media intelligence
At the close of 2016, Netflix had broken the threshold of one million New Zealand users and Lightbox had doubled its numbers since 2015. However, that's not to say New Zealanders are choosing sides, with Roy Morgan Research showing that they're happy to dip into different services.
Sam Aldred offers a contrarian view on the perception that Sky is simply a villainous corporate juggernaut hell-bent on keeping tier one sports exclusive.
MediaWorks and NBC International have appointed Maria Mahony as the general manager for Bravo New Zealand. She joins the joint venture from her recent role as the head of programming and local content for Lightbox, arriving with 17 years in local and international broadcasting experience at a range of companies, including MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, TVNZ (Lightbox is yet to announce a replacement for Mahony).
The competition for content is heating up. Customers don't want one service, they want choices that fit the type of household they are and the individual tastes in their household. Kym Niblock talks about making sure people choose Lightbox from a suite of video-on-demand services.
Last year, the Global Mode legal battle provided a feisty introduction to the competitive banter that would unfold as the SVOD market started to mature in New Zealand. And although, we are only a few weeks into January, there are already a few jabs being thrown in this space. Following on from news that Netflix was going to clamp down on backdoor users accessing its US version, Neon has been quick to play its first hand with a responsive media release titled “Never fear NEON is Here”.
In 2015, the maturation of New Zealand’s SVOD market was tracked in the column inches of media journalists across the industry. And this trend has already continued this year with Netflix making headlines by extending its service to 130 countries across the world and then saying that it was looking into clamping down on VPN users to ensure they can’t log into global content. We chat to Lightbox chief executive Kym Niblock about what's likely to happen in the SVOD market in 2016.
Following on from the recent controversy regarding Lion's funding of research conducted by anthropologist Dr Anne Fox, we take a look at whether we can trust research funded by coroporations (or anyone for that matter).
From TV dinners to content jostling, suicide pacts and toilet watchers: Kym Niblock on Lightbox's first year
Just over a year ago, various journalists across the industry had a TV dinner delivered to to their homes. In addition to providing a night off cooking for many, this unusual delivery served to announce the launch of Spark's subscription video on-demand streaming service Lightbox. Since then, TV dinners have been removed from the menu, and Kiwi viewers have instead been feasting on the content offered by service, clocking in 12 million hours of streaming time via the service. The company's chief executive Kym Niblock talks about the journey thus far.
Lightbox has released two new TVCs by creative agency Consortium and production company Kontent in a continuation of its campaign, which has been rolling out since March with the aim of drawing attention to some of the SVOD provider’s more popular shows. But the Spark-owned SVOD service is by no means the only player in the market eager to get viewers' attention, as Netflix, Quickflix and Neon also running campaigns that showcase their respective shows.
Rarely do the players in the TV market set aside their fierce competition and come together in support of a common cause. However, the emergence of global mode options on internet service providers Slingshot, Orcon and other companies has risen sufficient concern for MediaWorks, Sky, TVNZ and Spark (the owner of Lightbox) unify. A joint statement by the quartet of companies today stated that they are "taking action against internet and technology companies who sell and promote services that enable access to international geo-blocked TV and movie services."
Netflix, which launched in the Kiwi market today, yesterday announced that its pricing structure will include three different subscription options: $9.99 for single-stream standard definition plan; $12.99 for a two-stream high-definition plan; or $15.99 for a four-stream ultra-high definition plan. And this announcement has been met with swift responses by the players currently in the market. PLUS: traditional broadcasters also announce some changes.
Subscription video on-demand is often compared to linear television as a superior alternative that gives users the freedom to watch what they want when they want to, without the annoyance of advertising. Yet, despite these advantages, Kiwi SVOD provider Lightbox still sees value in using the reach of traditional television to spread the news about its offering and has just released a new, somewhat crazy, campaign for Vikings.
Spark’s subscription video on-demand (SVOD) platform Lightbox has been experimenting with some marketing avenues, through the use of bloggers and social influencers in order to support its traditional media channels.
With the proliferation of subscription video on demand services, some have started to suggest that the traditional paid-for TV model will come crashing down. However, in its interim report for the first half of 2015, Sky included an interesting graph that illustrates why the service might stick around for quite some time.