OTT, CTV, SVOD, FAST – whichever acronym you care to use, there’s no escaping the fact that each is just another variant for the same thing, television.

For all the industry’s contortions to make the new TV ad infrastructure work, the end result – TV ads – looks an awful lot like the old world from a consumer point of view.

Soon, that may not cut it any longer. In this video interview with Beet.TV, Raja Rajamannar, Chief Marketing Communications Officer & President, Healthcare Business, Mastercard, explains why it is time to leap forward.

Media in the metaverse

Rajamannar says we have now entered “the fifth paradigm” of marketing, a Cambrian explosion in which “two dozen technologies that are coming at us like a tsunami”, from XR and metaverse to crypto and autonomous driving. With so much more immersion, can TV stay relevant?

“Television has a huge opportunity to leap forward from where they are today, to new ways of delivering video content, interactive content, and even commerce experience or shopping experiences,” Rajamannar says.

“It’s not simply communicating to consumers, but it is also interacting with consumers, which means it is two-way.”

“AI is Going to be the Single Biggest Disruptor and Enabler of Marketing,” Mastercard’s Rajamannar

Rebooting TV

For all its reinvention in the last five to 10 years, the TV and video industry has remained remarkably linear, sticking largely to a script of high-end, one-to-many, long-form TV-like productions.

That is whilst the consumer experience has veered somewhat toward short-form, feed-based media and whilst the interactive gaming industry has exploded in parallel.

Rajamannar thinks TV must evolve.

“Are you going to see the same TV programme – for example, a cartoon show – on television the way you will view it tomorrow in the metaverse? The answer is absolutely not,” he says.

“How do create the ecosystem for advertisers to come into that space and effectively communicate about their brands and about their products in that metaverse? It’s going to be something which is very interesting.”

TV must step-up

Rajamannar recently published a book, Quantum Marketing, in which he outlines what he sees as the “fifth age” of marketing, a coming-together of several new media channels that necessitate a new approach to communication.

As consumers lean toward those new channels, Rajamannar says TV platform owners can either “take hold” of the necessity to provide their own offerings in the new spaces, or “abdicate it to the Silicon Valley giants”.

“The broadcast companies will really do well for themselves if they stay ahead of the trends that are happening right now,” he says.

TV industry, the ball is in your court.

You’re watching “Engaging Stories, Impactful Innovation,” a Beet.TV Leadership Video Series, presented by WarnerMedia. To view more videos from this series, please visit this page.