According to Forrester principal analysts Joanna O’Connell and Jim Nail, the television industry is experiencing a “new wave” of thinking, particularly as it pertains to the cross section of traditional and digital models. In a fireside chat at the Beet Retreat hosted by Publicis in New York, the two discussed the challenges and opportunities of the cross-media landscape.

“I think what we recognize is what the industry is dealing with right now, which is the very real divide still between understanding of and the skills associated with traditional linear broadcast and more sort of digital ways of thinking and behaving,” says O’Connell. “So for the sake of the research, we partnered.”

For Nail, who brings more of a traditional TV perspective, this means seeing where digital trends are pointing, and putting a sense of urgency on pulling away from what is comfortable for linear ad buys.

“Something had to be done to figure out how do we change what we’re doing so we can capture those opportunities to get our brands in front of those people,” says Nail. “But clearly it’s going to require pretty significant change in thinking about audiences, what data you use, and the technology platforms that are going to support that.”

O’Connell, whose work has been done mostly on the digital side, admits that there is much to be gained from exploring linear models of TV, but that digital people tended to be a little dismissive of, thinking that TV would look one very certain way in the future. Both analysts agree that there needs to be a happy medium that emphasizes the overlap between both models.

“We had a sea of what I’m now calling peaches and plums, which are really really different,” says O’Connell. “But the hybrid of the two is the beautiful nectarine.”

It’s these “nectarines”, O’Connell says, that will keep the industry evolving while still maintaining an organizational structure that can most effectively adapt.

This video was produced at the Beet Retreat leadership event hosted Publicis Media in New York. The event and video series is sponsored by FreeWheel and LiveRamp. For more videos from the event, please visit this page