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Olympics on new and traditional media

Olympics on new and traditional media

There is an interesting conflict between new and traditional media when it comes to global sport events, the biggest of which being the summer Olympic games. Old media buys broadcasting rights and airs events punctuated by advertising. As long as events are aired in real time there is no problem.

However, if the audience happens to be in a different time zone media want to air the most important events in prime time (for best advertising returns). However, the experience might be spoiled by social media that operates in real time and may reveal results and key content by the time mainstream media broadcasts events. If you want your audience to watch Usain Bolt win the 100m sprint there is a problem: chances are people will check the event at work using their iPhones or YouTube on their desktops at work.

Data seems to indicate that for now this is still a contained problem: only a few percent of the (mostly young) audience abandons the core sport channels because of the time difference but with social media becoming mainstream this should change fast. For the next Olimpics, traditional media will need, not only be present online, but also, develop a smart bundle for its customers so they can benefit from the thrill of sports news as well as the benefits of picture quality, coverage, commentary, all in one’s home comfort. How to price such a bundle and how to extract advertising revenues from it is a fascinating problem.

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