Web TV vs. Broadcast TV, Part II
December 8, 2008 9:03 AM
In my last post, I mused about the differences between Web and traditional TV. It’s been almost a year now since I’ve expanded into the entertainment business. It’s been an interesting journey, and a lot of great experience.
Last week, I talked about how I love the broadcast side. Today, I’m all about the Web.
As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve got a few Web TV projects I’m working on. All are progressing. If there’s one thing the Web offers, it's plenty of bandwidth, which means you’ve got plenty of time and room.
As somebody who has created shows for both broadband and broadcast, the easier, more open opportunity of Web TV is a lot less intense and a lot less lucrative.
It’s attractive mostly because you can make ideas happen. There are no pigeonholed mindsets, no established trends people want to parlay into, no real limitations to what you envision or want to create. Price is a factor, of course, but since the cost and barrier of entry for Web TV can be low, it’s not impossible to make something happen.
Money is tight online, but brands want to get involved with the Web. The right vehicle and execution/Internet knowhow can net sponsors. I’ve seen it.
Hollywood executives have been coming to my company, 9 Group, in droves and many say it’s because their agents/managers don’t know what to do with the Web.
That’s understandable. I certainly couldn’t sell a script. Surely it can be learned, and many are making strides online, but it takes time to get up to where an Internet veteran is. Just the same, I’ve learned a ton about how to create a broadcast show, but I’m nowhere near the knowhow and contacts of a TV veteran.
When I wanted to make a broadcast TV show, I went to experts in the space. Why wouldn’t you do the same if you wanted to launch something on the Web? The ultimate combination, in my opinion, is a blend from both ends.
Another problem many have is an unrealistic expectation of budget and what they ultimately will earn. But smart players know that, like any other Internet project, risk can pay off later. I can say that when it comes to where a brand or sponsor wants to spend, they seek credibility, and that’s to the Hollywood veteran’s advantage.
The one area of the industry that doesn’t seem to be jumping in? Talent.
Big stars are a huge draw online, but right now the stars are benefiting tons of sites when that attention could be going direct to them. If I were a Jerry Seinfeld, or even a Spencer Pratt, I’d be all over creating Internet projects—and I’d work with Internet veterans to do it.
I’ll be posting more on this later because I think it’s an important topic. With the Web evolving to be a form of entertainment more than ever before, all of Hollywood should be eyeing a move in.