Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Another Look at the Long Tail and Video

Bear Stearns recently released their second report on the long tail and its effects on video distribution. Entertainment Industry: A longer Look at the Long Tail (links to PDF) is great - a very succinct analysis of trends in the field, and while Bear Stearns is focused on big players that want to make a lot of money, it applies to the indie world as well.
Some important findings, with my comments:
  • With the increase in video online, from gazillions of sources, value will shift from content creators and typical outlets (broadcast or distributors) to aggregators. The last Bear Stearns report mentioned this as well, and I think it is true which is why we've launched Reframe.
  • UGC is not likely a fad. It's growing, and represents the most popular content category. This seems obvious to many, but also unlikely to just as many others. They estimate that UGC accounts for 13% of all internet traffic, up from less than 1 percent just three years ago.
  • Perhaps most interestingly, one-third of their survey didn't mind pre-roll advertising before videos to get them for free, and only 10% said that a pre-roll ad of 15 seconds was too long. While these ads drive me crazy, its apparent that for most people, it's not a concern.
  • What the analysts call the Paradox of Choice is a big concern - as more video goes online, more people have trouble finding good content, or the content they want. So, again, aggregation by trusted sources will be key (something we've incorporated into Reframe as well). I think trusted source also applies to specialty distributors (like Women Make Movies) as well - their brand becomes more important in this new paradigm. The same probably holds true for certain festivals with a strong brand, like Silverdocs, that can make the transition to being an online trusted curator of content.
  • Digital revenues are becoming bigger, but probably won't be enough to offset the loss of traditional revenues - this one is bad for everyone, but probably an inevitable truth. We're seeing this to be the case in music, and it will likely be true in film/video. Unfortunately, only some key entities will want analog formats anymore - collectors, galleries, museums and some universities. I imagine educational pricing can make the digital transition pretty well for awhile, but overall digital sales (especially to consumers) will be lessened.
Anyway, the full report is linked above and is worth a read to those who think about these issues. I mentioned this at Silverdocs as well, but it bears repeating - Spencer Wang's reports at Bear Stearns are always right on target.

1 comment:

The Sujewa said...

Hey Mr.Brian Newman,

Let me know if you are into this iW blogger meeting/party idea i had:


- Sujewa