NEW YORK – The popularity of smart TVs and other connected devices has given consumers multiple ways to access their favorite programming, whether it’s live sports and news or scripted series. For broadcasters such as CBS, the fragmentation of the marketplace has led them to adopt their methods of distribution.
“We’re about making the biggest, best shows out there, and we let the consumer choose how she wants to watch it,” Radha Subramanyam, president and chief research and analytics officer at CBS, said in this interview with Beet.TV contributor Mike Shields at the CIMM Summit 2023. “We’ve also learned that we shouldn’t approach the world as one versus the other, because that’s not how consumers operate.”
There are demographic differences among audiences, with older consumers tending to stick with linear television while younger people are signing up for streaming services or watching videos on platforms such as Alphabet’s YouTube.
“We’re meeting everybody where they are because what cuts across all of it, what unifies all of them together, is the content itself and the storytelling,” Subramanyam said.
This year’s strikes by Hollywood actors and writers slowed the production of fresh content, and programmers have had to adapt. CBS this season began airing the show “Yellowstone,” which was a hit on another network with a smaller reach.
“We knew it was the No. 1 show in the country at many points in time, but we also knew through our research that 80% of the country hadn’t watched it,” Subramanyam said. “Here was an opportunity to bring it to audiences who hadn’t watched it before.”