The Future of Audience and Revenue: Q&A with Daniel Anstandig, CEO and Founder of Futuri Media

Futuri Media works with A-level talent in the C-suite and beyond more than 5,000 high-performing media professionals. The company lives by the qualities of speed, passion, proactivity, and trust and invests heavily in research to keep the business moving forward. Ultimately, Futuri aspires to help its clients grow revenue, audience size and content.

As a growth-minded broadcast media executive, Futuri’s CEO and founder Daniel Anstandig is excited to provide his insights about the media landscape and to help organizations effectively change and improve with the rapidly changing media landscape.

Q: In your Future of Audience and Revenue series you discovered some interesting data regarding audience behavior. Could you please elaborate?

A: We delved into new insights and growth opportunities for broadcasters. The report includes new data from Futuri and research partner SmithGeiger with more than 1,200 U.S. consumers aged 18-64 in July 2022. Our insights provide guidance for broadcasters to evolve operating strategies and account for today’s challenging media business environment.

Here are a few insights that I would like to highlight:

  • VIDEO STREAMERS (Netflix, Disney+, etc) continue to grow, and most of them will have an AD-SUPPORTED TIER by 2023 — potentially cutting into ad dollars for broadcast TV and radio.
  • PODCAST REVENUE is growing to $2 billion in 2022 and $3.3 billion by 2025 (source: Magna). This is a revenue and audience opportunity that can’t be ignored by any broadcaster.
  • FIGHT RATINGS DECLINES WITH ON-DEMAND. Erosion of broadcast audio listening is being offset by growth in streaming and podcasts — for broadcasters who are doing things right.
  • COST FOR ORIGINAL CONTENT IS HIGH. Outside of first-mover powerhouse Netflix, it’s estimated that in 2022, streamers will spend $25 billion in content only to see a negative $11.5 billion in EBITDA.
  • BROADCASTERS WASTING OPPORTUNITIES to repurpose live and local content in on-demand audio and video formats. Hundreds of hours of content are generated every day, never making it to social and digital channels.
  • REVENUE MOVING TO DIGITAL. 2022: $54 billion in linear video spend; $35 billion in digital video spend. By 2025: Digital will take the lead, with $50 billion in digital video spend;. $47 billion in linear video spend. IN AUDIO, DIGITAL AD SPEND ALREADY NEARLY EQUAL TO AM/FM.
  • TRANSACTIONAL, PROGRAMMATIC NOT ENOUGH TO HIT GOALS. Relying on cost-per-point and auction-based programmatic is more a race to the bottom than a race to the goal. Savvy managers turning to DEVELOPMENTAL BUSINESS with skilled sales teams to outperform.

Q: What are your own key takes from these data points? How should broadcasters interpret them?

A:  Broadcasters should position their brand for success by rethinking how to utilize technology to develop, produce, and distribute content, and in order to reach or surpass revenue objectives, they must minimize reliance on transactional business and expand developmental business.

Moreover, our research shows that media companies that leverage local content as a competitive feature of their business plan are at an advantage. There’s strong consumer demand for on-demand content from local TV and radio personalities, as well as local business owners with whom broadcasters can develop compelling content marketing pieces. That said, our research also points to potential declines in broadcast media consumption. By leaning into on-demand broadcast audio and video content, local media companies can take advantage of the rises in streaming consumption and diversify their revenue streams wisely.

Q: What about local talent? How does this play out?

A: ​​The highest-growth media brands will leverage local talent as a competitive feature of their business plan. In our study of 1,200+ U.S. consumers, we asked: “If these groups of people published more free on-demand audio or video content, would you listen to or watch it?”

Nearly half of them want more content from local TV and radio personalities, beating demand from celebrities, social media influencers, government officials, and more. Audiences also want content from local business owners and/or leaders, creating a revenue opportunity for local media to partner with them on content marketing.

Q: What about disruption? Who do you see as the biggest disruptors in terms of broadcast revenue?

Digital  growth is on a trajectory that will see it account for three quarters of all US ad spending by 2025 while ratings currency is threatened as more advertisers seek the reliable data and auditability that digital provides. Programmatic pressure will increase as more local buyers are purchasing OTA ads the same way they buy digital ads now; rate pressure will grow.

Q: Any additional action items for media brands focused on growth in 2023 and beyond?

A: The highest-growth media brands will see the fastest growth from social videos and podcasts. For example, 1 in 3 Gen Zs and Millennials use social media apps daily, and more than 1 in 4 spend at least 1.5 hours a day listening to podcasts. Take advantage of that engagement with social video and podcast strategies. Create both broad, mass-appeal content and niche content. Your broadcast content is broad and mass-appeal (and, again, should be used on-demand). Niche: A recent YouTube report revealed that 55% of Gen Z consumers agree that they watch content no one they know personally is interested in. Use AI-driven story discovery technology like our very own TopicPulse to identify engaging niche topics and angles and create digital content around them. Focus on values-based messaging: both economic and societal. Our research shows that a net 25% of Americans plan to do more saving, investing, and planning for the future in the next year, net 15% plan to do more observing how companies treat their employees, and net 9% plan to pay more attention to how companies promote environmental issues. Align your brands with these actions.

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