On Demand Summit: Better Shows, Better Revenue a Click Away

Richer VOD Offerings Key to Retaining/Acquiring Subscribers
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New York -- Consumers are slowly but surely changing the way they view video on demand, said Bill Livek, vice chairman and CEO of Rentrak. While on-demand programming was once synonymous with pay per view -- a button on the remote often avoided for that reason -- he said viewers now know they can get a rich array of programming mostly free of charge.

"I'm seeing a sea change in terms of how the consumer is starting to watch television," he said.
Fully monetizing the platform by getting agencies fully on board with on demand advertising, he added, is another story.

Livek and colleague Cathy Hetzel, Rentrak corporate president and president of its AMI Division, starred in the Measuring on Demand Content in a Redefining Market panel at the On Demand  Summit here Wednesday. Jeff Baumgartner, technology editor at Multichannel News, moderated the discussion.

Hetzel said the networks are more on board with the notion of on demand boosting their top shows' profiles, as opposed to siphoning off linear viewing. "It's one of the huge differences I see in the redefinition of the market," she said.

Livek noted that movies make up just 7% of on demand transactions but the bulk of the revenue, and stressed the importance of census based measurement on the platform. Hetzel is pushing for a more transparent approach to on demand to make it more attractive to marketers.

"We need everyone in the room to be in board for this to be a successful ad medium," she said. "We need a transparent view for agencies to buy this more easily."