The industry’s biggest players gathered to talk about the future of TV. Sharing insights, innovations, challenges and the latest competitive plays in one of the fastest-changing industries on earth. Here are six of the big imperatives for progressive media brands, plus a few unresolved questions:

Create the now, not the future

It’s impossible to see far into the future when change is running at breakneck speed and consumption patterns and business models are in flux. Build on emerging trends and technologies to innovate and be ready to pivot towards the next big thing.

Build innovation into your DNA

It’s not enough to be creative. The most innovative companies have an open culture, an insatiable curiosity and a constant hunger to experiment with new ways of doing things. Those who build a culture of innovation will win.

Go global

As more and more people join the global middle class, there’s an insatiable appetite for great drama and lifestyle content. The UK is a creative powerhouse. 50% of the most successful global TV formats are made in the UK. New quality is coming from Sweden, Denmark, South and Central America and Africa. Great stories go global.

Be always-on

According to a Viacom survey, the average person watches TV from up to five sources on up to six devices. And 60% of people say TV has never been this good. Broadcasters are focusing on delivering a high quality, seamless experience across many different touchpoints. Telling stories in increasingly non-linear, always-on ways.

Turn up the heat with second-screening

Meerkatting or second-screening is second nature to millions. Twitter measured brainwaves and found that people who are second-screening are more engaged, not less, with a heightened emotional response to the TV they’re enjoying. Brands have only just begun to tap into the power of social media. So expect to see much more of this.

Discover more creativity & more simplicity

Global audiences, an explosion of new technological possibilities, a new era of quality content the opportunities have never been greater for media brands to excite people with original content and experiences. At the same time, consumers have never had so much choice and media brands need to help them navigate the complexity.

But as thought provoking as what was said was what was not said.

Some questions kept rattling around in our minds as we left.

Will the future be co-created?

Who determines what we like, should like, could like, and will like? Are tastes made or followed? The lines are blurring. Some content makers are co-creating with audiences. Will the selfie-stick generation be hungry for much, much more of this?

How will we experience advertising?

Advertising is how we pay for free content. And the space to innovate is wide open. Brands are angling for greater ownership of content and seeking to create entirely new and exciting experiences. Will sass communication replace mass communication, immersing users way beyond current ad models?

How do you target <1?

We’re beyond Segment-Of-One Marketing. Not only do we reach each individual with content uniquely relevant to them but we now get it to several screens that divide their attention. It’s Segment-Of-<1-Marketing. Messages will need to vary by format, content must be nuanced and complementary, programming needs to account for time, place and meaning shifts. How will it work? Expect an explosion of innovation.

Who shapes the agenda?

The Vexing Mathematics of Democracy raises crucial quantitative aspects of voter (mis)interpretation. The Vexing Arithmetic of Media asks where power lies, who wields it and who moulds it –

Governments, citizens, corporations, lobbies, communities, teen bloggers? The industry’s biggest players have the potential and potency to shape and shake up politics and culture. At the same time, anyone can create influential content for free. How will the politics of the media evolve to influence governance and citizenship?

Who owns it?

It used to be clear who owns (or at least controls) what. Mark owns Facebook, Jeff – Amazon, Gary and Sergei – Google. Monopolists? Yes, actually. There’s just not much room for more than one lead platform per sector. And at the same time, no. Paradoxically, on those platforms, billions of people have unprecedented media power. Do we need to own, or is access just as powerful?

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