CANNES – Time Inc. doesn’t foresee a letup in the niche segmentation of television content going forward. And even if that content doesn’t attract huge audiences, that’s okay as long as viewers are “super engaged,” according to Rich Battista.
Just in case this prediction doesn’t pan out, Time Inc. will be churning out all manner of content—from 50,000 short-form website videos this year to more than 40 hours of original programming for several dozen broadcast, cable and digital networks, says the company’s President and CEO.
“When you think about that continuum of offerings, we believe that we’re obviously playing in this really big and really deep,” Battista says in this interview with Beet.TV at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity.
Last December, Time Inc. broke into the top ten in total digital audience rankings in the U.S. with some 140 million unique visits per month across its bevy of brands, according to Battista.
The company’s video expansion has corresponded of late with a push toward operating less in branded silos and “a concerted effort to build into an enterprise-level company where we now have the full might and offerings of all of our brands,” says Battista.
With its acquisition of ad tech company Viant, Time Inc. can assure advertisers that they are “reaching real people. We can now reach them in a very precise way and then we have the attribution to help them see if the advertising worked.”
Last fall, the company entered the over-the-top TV business with the launch of The People/Entertainment Weekly Network, the first free-to-consumer, advertiser-supported OTT service in the entertainment news category. According to Battista, the app version has more than 1.6 million downloads.
Two means of differentiation for Time Inc. are its history of “creating great content around our brands” doing so at scale. “Advertisers continue to want to be in those worlds.”
As it’s expanded its video content offerings, the company has tried to be native to specific platforms, “which is something that’s essential in today’s world,” says Battista. “You can’t just take a piece of content and throw it on five different platforms and think it’s going to work on each.”
Going forward, “I think you’re going to see continued tremendous niche and segmentation,” he adds. “Niche content will be really important in the future.”
This video is part of Beet.TV’s Coverage of Cannes Lions 2017. For more from the series, please visit this page.