Zucker on Changing TV

Mar 23, 2008  •  Post A Comment

Broadcast network TV’s place in the media landscape is changing, NBC Universal CEO Jeff Zucker acknowledged last week. Consumers probably can expect less scripted fare, but more shows aimed at reaching broad swaths of audience.
“I do think there will be a broadcast network in 10 years. But it will not be like the broadcast network of 1975,” said Mr. Zucker, speaking Wednesday at Advertising Age’s Digital Marketing Conference in New York. He was interviewed by CNBC host and Deutsch Chairman Donny Deutsch.
Noting the success of programs including “Heroes” on NBC, “Grey’s Anatomy” on ABC and “American Idol” on Fox, as well as the Super Bowl and the Olympics, Mr. Zucker said event programming “will continue to be the backbone of broadcast network TV.”
Advertisers continue to rely on that kind of broadcast-network reach to launch movies and introduce new products to the marketplace. Broadcast networks need to be careful to avoid going too niche, which is really the strength of cable networks, said Mr. Zucker.
His remarks come as the medium is in the midst of a wholesale shift. With more consumers able to get entertainment and information online, TV networks are finding that distribution of content over their own air simply is not enough. They also must attract audiences via the Web and digital devices such as cell phones and iPods.
In a sign that networks have recognized the new complexity of the ad market, NBC will host an upfront event in mid-May that spotlights more than just the network; it will focus on a range of ad assets across NBC Universal. CBS plans something similar, talking about its flagship broadcast lineup as well as radio, syndication and outdoor.
NBC still will reach out to media buyers on its broadcast prime-time lineup, Mr. Zucker said. But it will do so with smaller meetings (with about 60 to 70 people) held several times with groups of buyers across the nation.
Mr. Zucker said that big broadcast networks will have to cut back on the number of hours of scripted programming they produce.
“You’re still going to see the great scripted programming, but you’re not going to see 22 hours a whole week anymore,” he said.

One Comment

  1. WATCH OUT! THOSE ADS ON TOP OF THE SITE LEADS TO MALWARE!! I really like your site but please do something about it :/

Your Comment

Email (will not be published)