Green Adds Marketing Punch to Technology

Jul 21, 2003  •  Post A Comment

Dr. Richard Green has transformed cable industry research consortium CableLabs over the past few years to now include marketing as well as technology.
That’s why CTAM chairman Kevin Leddy selected the technologist, who serves as president and CEO of CableLabs, for the Chairman’s Award at this year’s CTAM Summit.
“We think the key to cable’s marketing in the future is going to be its product leadership,” said Mr. Leddy, the senior VP, strategy and development, at Time Warner Cable.
Five years ago CTAM created a strategic plan for the organization that included improving the interface between marketing and technology, an effort that Dr. Green shepherded. “We began to think about the kind of things we could do to provide a heads-up about technology to the marketing people and to make sure on the tech side that we were moving in the right direction,” said Dr. Green. “The last thing we want is for new technology developments to be a surprise,” he said.
Before CableLabs, Dr. Green worked for PBS, CBS and ABC. AT PBS, he was senior VP of broadcast operations and engineering. He also has managed ABC’s videotape post-production department and has done basic research in laser technology for the Hughes Aircraft Company, according to his official bio.
Dr. Green helped organize the Advanced Television Systems Committee, and chaired a committee that developed worldwide television standard for digital signals.
One of the fruits of the partnership has been Go2Broadband, the cable service database to help retailers locate cable products. The service allows a customer to visit a Circuit City, for instance, and enter his or her ZIP code into a kiosk to learn what cable services are available in that location.The G2B database is hugely important since it gives cable operators a national footprint for the first time, said Char Beales, CTAM’s president and CEO. “[Dr. Green] has been such a champion of bringing marketers and technologists together to bring products together,” she said.
One of the current issues that CableLabs and its marketing cohorts will tackle is the labeling of digital TV sets. Labeling is crucial since it communicates to the customer that the product is cable-ready, he said.
This fall will also mark an important collaboration when consumer electronics makers begin to introduce the next generation of TV sets that are cable-ready. Issues to be resolved are: “Do you get the pod from your cable company and buy your TV set from the retailer? Do we make pods available in retail? Do we roll a truck? These are the things that are very important in marketing,” Dr. Green said. “As a technologist, it’s enormously exciting to think about all the things you can do with it. But you have to do the right things,’ he said. “And make sure you add products that really make people’s lives better.”