The [a]listdaily Guide To Thriving at E3

Next week’s forthcoming Electronic Entertainment Expo isn’t just a place to check out the best and brightest in video games. It’s also an ideal opportunity to talk with people involved with every aspect of the game, from its development to its marketing. Various members from companies will be present and accounted for at the event, and it’s a great way to get to know more about a key project. As well, you can check out the buzz at the show, see what’s hot and what’s not, and find out what people seem to be most impressed by at the show. There’s nothing like seeing an enormous crowd around some display to drive home just how attractive that is to E3 attendees.

Of course, connecting with people in the game industry is always a good thing to do at E3, primarily because so many of the people you want to talk to are somewhere at the show. That’s not to say that everyone’s readily available. Some companies require making an appointment to seeing a game or talking to a producer/developer behind it. (E3 is a very busy show, after all.) However, there’s more than enough opportunity to talk to someone who’s brought business to the show.

Here now is a quick guide in terms of how to network the right way at next week’s big event, and use your time most efficiently at the show:

Taking in The Show Floor
While you probably have plenty of appointments, budget a couple of hours at least (if you can) just to prowl the show floor and see what’s happening. It’s a great way to identify what’s working and what’s not in booth design, signage, advertising, and anything unusual. Look for big clusters of people and figure out what’s attracting so much attention. Conversely, look for areas devoid of attendees and see if you can figure out why no one is wandering around there. Did a certain sign catch your eye Take a moment to figure out why, and you may make one of your upcoming projects better.

Don’t forget to stay well hydrated, because you’ll get dried out fairly quickly. And when you get hungry, you may want to step outside and look for food trucks (some on the mezzanine level, some across the street). It’s a few minutes away, but you’ll find quite a different and tasty array of choices. Plus, there’s your chance to check out the external signage, displays, and events taking place outside the convention facility. Was that money well-spent Did it attract your attention, and can you remember what game or company it was for This is a massive marketing laboratory in the wild, and you can see some creative ideas thriving and others dying out before your eyes.

The PC Gaming Show
Not everything gaming-related is happening under the roof of the Los Angeles Convention Center. AMD and PC Gamer are hosting the PC Gaming Show, a separate event that will happen on June 16th at the Belasco Theater. More information about the event can be found here.

It’s a great spot to learn more about some of the best up-and-coming PC game developers, as various “PC celebrities,” like Boss Key Productions’ Cliff Bleszinski and DayZ team member Dean Hall will be on hand, alongside other studios like Blizzard, Square Enix, Paradox Interactive and others. It’s a celebration of everything PC gaming, and considering the size of its market, it’s worth knowing more about.

More information about the event can be found here. Separate registration is required.

Parties, Parties, Parties
The Electronic Entertainment Expo is serious business, but that doesn’t mean that companies are afraid to kick back and have some fun. Every night of the show seems to have something to offer in terms of getting together with members of the gaming community and having a good time.

Throughout the week, various companies will be hosting parties in and around L.A., including Azubu, Harmonix (Rock Band 4), Twitch (in partnership with Microsoft), Square Enix (Just Cause 3), BluBox, Wargaming, and industry analyst Michael Pachter’s official get-together.

These parties provide opportunities galore to mingle with fellow industry members, whether they’re journalists or game makers. They’re quite casual, and a perfect place to name drop, and get a little more information about upcoming titles, and what’s being heavily hyped.

Strike Up a Conversation
Even if you don’t have an appointment at a certain booth, it never hurts to go up, drop off a business card and say, “Hi, I’d like to learn more about your game.” Even though you probably won’t get to see it (most companies are booked full for the show by this point), there’s still likely to be someone that can provide a little background about the game, such as a release date and a general breakdown of what makes it worth getting excited about. Note: some companies may be a little too busy, but in any case, you’ll be able to get press assets that will provide you more details about a specific game. Certainly better than nothing.

Another good thing to do is check around some of the local areas for meet-ups after the show comes to a close for the day. Area hotels like the Hotel Figeuroa and the JW Marriott should have plenty of people around, chatting about business in the games industry, and these are great spots to sit for a spell, grab a drink and soak up information about forthcoming projects.

Stay In the Social Feed
Finally, if you want to get the most info out of E3 – as well as keep up with all the new game announcements – then social media is clearly a best bet. Following popular journalist accounts (like, ahem, @thedcd) is ideal for keeping in the know. Here are a few suggestions on who to follow.

  • @e3 on Twitter: Yes, the official E3 account will have plenty of information. In addition, this Wednesday, it’ll be the subject of an #E3Takeover, where various media favorites, including Patrick Scott Patterson, Rachel Lara, Paola “PancakePow” Alejandra, Brittney Brombacher and Genese Davis will provide coverage straight from the show floor.
  • @twitch on Twitter: Twitch will be broadcasting live from the show floor all week with a number of game demos and interviews, and more than likely, it’ll keep its Twitter feed updated with what’s streaming – as well as what’s been announced.
  • @EGMNOW on Twitter: This news outlet is certainly prepared for the big show, as it’s announced a number of team members in the media biz to help it along. This includes G4 veteran Adam Sessler, Totally Rad Show host Jeff Cannata and Best Game Show Ever hostess Jessica Villarreal.

More outlets, like @IGN and @KindaFunny and AHEM, @alistdaily, will provide coverage as well, so keep an eye out for details using the #e32015 hashtag.

SuperData: ‘Sequels And DLC To Dominate E3 As Market Totals $979M In May’

Analysis from SuperData CEO, Joost van Dreunen, follows:

  • With $979 million in May sales, US digital games revenue is up 11 percent year-over-year.
  • Can E3 handle the industry’s switch to digital
  • Heroes of the Storm enters right as US MOBA market plateaus at 28 million.
  • Google and Oculus place VR bets as install base reaches 11 million (2016E).
  • Konami sees its future in the $24.6 billion mobile market.

With $979 million in May sales, US digital games revenue is up 11 percent year-over-year.
Overall, US digital games revenues grew 11 percent compared to the same month last year, with all segments experiencing year-over-year revenue growth. Historically, May tends to be a slower month in the year as the summer season begins and the industry prepares its major releases for the holiday season. Across the market we observed an improvement in conversion rates, indicating a greater willingness among consumers to spend on digital games. Notably, despite stable player numbers, both digital console and digital PC market saw impressive year-over-year growth in revenues: 17 percent and 12 percent, respectively. May digital PC revenue was $203 million, and as more console players transitioned to newer systems with more storage and greater focus on digital content, May digital console revenue reached $67 million.

Ongoing high revenues from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare (NASDAQ: ATVI) and Grand Theft Auto V (NASDAQ: TTWO) contributed to the year-over-year increases in the digital console and PC markets. CD Projekt RED’s (WSE: CDR) The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt saw strong digital sales as well, becoming the third highest-grossing digital console and PC game of May, despite only being available for purchase during the later part of the month.

Can E3 handle the industry’s switch to digital
As the usual frenzy toward E3 accelerates, we expect this year to offer an emphasis on sequels and existing game franchises. Despite next gen consoles sales still going strong and continuing to outperform the last console cycle, Microsoft has already announced its price drop for the Xbox One to $350 for the base model. However, we expect the discussion around hardware this year to revolve around virtual reality. Following a slew of hardware announcements during GDC earlier this year, both Oculus and Sony’s Project Morpheus are likely to announce part of its initial lineup and pricing. As pre-orders for the Oculus go live during the upcoming holiday season, consumers will be looking for convincing killer apps to justify the initial expense.

In terms of software, we anticipate an emphasis on sequels rather than new IP. Considering the current install base of around 30 million units, it is an influx of risk-averse consumers rather than early adopters that will continue to grow the market. Consequently, this wave of consumers is generally less willing to take a chance on new content and chooses familiar titles and franchises instead. The real question on the table this year, however, is how the traditionally retail-focused event is going to adapt to an increasingly digital market. Simply put: since digital distribution is much less seasonal in terms of consumer spending, how will E3 maintain its position as a platform for publishers to announce their upcoming titles for the holiday season

Heroes of the Storm enters right as US MOBA market plateaus at 28 million.
In a single week we saw both the retirement date for Infinite Crisis by Turbine/Warner Bros. Interactive Ent. (NYSE: TWX) and the official release of Heroes of the Storm by Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: TTWO). Activision Blizzard’s pedigree and marketing muscle is enough to convince millions to try the game out in the short term. But the company still faces an uphill battle to grab market share from League of Legends (Riot games/Tencent, SEHK: 700) and Valve’s DoTA2. Most MOBAs are exceedingly complex games; players who have invested substantial time to master one game are unlikely to jump ship. Because of this, Heroes of the Storm’s long-term success depends on Blizzard’s ability to draw in and retain players who have not already committed themselves to one of the genre’s existing entries. The MOBA market in the United States continues to perform well in terms of spending, but following its peak of 29 million MAUs in August 2014 has started to stabilize.

Google and Oculus place VR bets as install base reaches 11 million (2016E).
In anticipation of the holiday season, Oculus VR (NASDAQ: FB) began rolling out the first major details of its consumer headset, including a Q1 2016 launch window. Oculus is aiming for a premium experience and will target VR enthusiasts and hardcore gamers at first, with an estimated cost of $1,500 USD for the necessary PC rig and headset. Google (NASDAQ: GOOG), on the other hand, wants its VR offerings to be highly accessible out of the gate and is making a push to put its affordable Cardboard VR headset in classrooms and now supports both Android and iOS. Google’s initial strategy of appealing to a mainstream audience has allowed the company to ship 1 million Cardboard headsets, making it currently the most-used platform in the market. Finally, Sony’s Project Morpheus, which has not nearly received the same amount of attention, holds the promise of seamlessly combining VR with its massive PS4 install base. To do so, however, the Japanese giant will have to also offer compelling content. We expect to see some initial applications showcased during this year’s E3.

Konagi’s switch to mobile heralds end of Japanese console heyday.
After a highly-publicised executive reshuffling and the unfortunate cancellation of Silent Hills, Konami (TYO: 9766) CEO Hideki Hayakawa revealed in May that the company’s games division will be focusing on mobile games. Leaving behind a long history as a console-first publisher, the move makes sense for Konami given the state of the Japanese games market. Japan has a smaller mobile player base than North America and Europe, but thanks to high average spending, the country’s mobile revenue is on track to reach $6.2 billion (2015E), compared to $4.7 billion in North America and $3.7 billion in Europe. Different from North America and Europe, the release of a new generation of digital-focused consoles has not rejuvenated console sales in Japan. And with the exception of Square Enix (TYO: 9684), which has a substantial western operations, Japanese legacy publishers have not been able to take advantage the popularity of digital consoles elsewhere in the world. Going forward, other historically console-focused Japanese publishers like Sega (OTCMKTS: SGAMY) will continue to slim down their console development operations in favor of a mobile-first business model.

For Oculus, 2016 Is A Game Changer

Even though the Electronic Entertainment Expo hasn’t begun yet, that hasn’t stopped the Facebook-owned virtual reality company Oculus from getting the train out of the station early.

The company provided an early glimpse of what it’ll be bringing to the video game event this week with a live stream earlier this morning, providing a look at the consumer edition of the upcoming headset, which is due for release in early 2016. Although a price point still wasn’t given, Oculus did provide a clearer picture on what it intends to do in terms of games and control options.

Here’s a small recap of what took place during the live stream:

A Partnership With Microsoft

Part of today’s presentation brought out Microsoft’s head of Xbox Phil Spencer, who explained that the gaming juggernaut has teamed up with Oculus to provide not only hardware, but streaming capability. The Oculus headset will come packed in with an Xbox One wireless controller and adapter, and will have compatibility with Windows 10. Furthermore, users will be able to stream Xbox One games to the device, in a theater-like setting where it appears that the user is sitting in a game room. “There is going to be a lot more to come,” said Spencer, indicating that more details could be revealed this Monday during the company’s pre-show press conference.

So what does this mean With Sony launching its own virtual reality gear, Project Morpheus, next year, Microsoft clearly wants to get on board with VR in its own way – but stopping just short of making its own headset. The Oculus Rift is an ideal partner, and, in turn, provides even more gaming opportunities for the device, in spite of the fact that it’s in a theater setting instead of full-on 3D experiences.

What this could also tie in, though, is compatibility with the Xbox One. Spencer mentioned nothing about the console, but the Rift seems like an ideal device to work with the system, although the Windows 10 operating system would need to be uploaded first, it seems. We’re likely to get a bigger picture from this partnership when Microsoft unveils its showcase next week.

Bring On the Games

Oculus explained just how serious it is when it comes to providing unique game experiences on its Rift device. It’s planning to invest $10 million in independent development, opening the door to teams eager to develop for the device; and many teams have stepped forward with new projects, including Ratchet & Clank developer Insomniac Games. It’s come through with a harrowing third-person survival adventure called Edge of Nowhere, with the trailer featured below.


Other games that were featured during the showcase include CCP’s space adventure Eve Valkyrie and Gunfire Games’ adventure Chronos. These games, along with others, should be on full display at the Oculus booth at E3 next week.

So what does this mean Even though it still has yet to sign on other partners, Oculus has a healthy slate of companies on board to bring unique experiences to the Rift. These include Harmonix (the developers of the forthcoming Rock Band 4) and Square Enix (publishers of Final Fantasy and Tomb Raider games). More announcements could be made by next week, to further entice users into snagging a Rift for themselves.

A New Way To Play

 Along with the included Xbox One controller, the Oculus Rift will also have a secondary control option that will virtually put a user’s hands into an experience. Oculus’ Palmer Luckey presented the Touch controllers today, a pair of comfortable units that wrap around the hands and enable users to pick up objects and move around with ease, using analog sticks and buttons embedded into the circular pads.

These promise to be a fulfilling experience in conjunction with the Rift, while also providing comfort, since the Touch controllers are lightweight and easy to use. There’s no word yet on cost, but it sounds like consumers would be smart to pick them up to get the ultimate involvement from the Rift.

What does this mean It indicates that Oculus is very serious about making game experiences more involving with the Rift, and the Touch controllers are an excellent way to create such a feeling, even with their somewhat gimmicky design. Lucky attendees of next week’s E3 show will be able to try it out for themselves.

A Virtual Future, Laid Out

There are still many questions revolving around the Oculus Rift, mainly with the price point. The team is staying quite mum when it comes to announcing just what consumers will be paying to get their own Rift, Touch controllers and games. However, we should know more in the next few months.

There is a good possibility that Oculus may be waiting for Sony to make its next move with the Project Morpheus. The publisher already confirmed that it’s devoting a good chunk of time to talking about the device during its own E3 press conference on Monday night, although it’s not quite known if it’ll announce a price point just yet.

With that, Oculus is gearing up to make the device more accessible, with a number of exclusive games, a partnership with Microsoft that is likely to pay off in the long run (especially if it can pull off Xbox One compatibility), and a marketing angle that’s likely to catch consumers by surprise – provided, again, that the price point is just right.

We’ll know more in a few months, but one thing’s clear – virtual reality is ready to come back to retail. Now it’s just a matter of how it approaches.

Publishers Are Paying Increasing Attention To eSports

Over the years, the field of eSports – competition amongst gamers on a grander scale – has grown exponentially. Major companies have begun to take notice of this, with all sorts of big names, including Coke and other advertisers, {link no longer active}  getting involved. Even (a)listdaily has been getting more and more into eSports coverage, with our own John Gaudiosi covering it on a regular basis.

Tournaments like this also draw big-time money, like Activision with Call of Duty {link no longer active} and Valve with its yearly DOTA 2-driven International event {link no longer active}. But now, it looks like more publishers are getting involved, finally realizing the value of eSports.

Digiday recently posted a story discussing ESPN’s further involvement with eSports, following its successful broadcast of the Heroes of the Dorm tournament a few weeks back. The channel’s publication, ESPN The Magazine, recently devoted an issue to eSports, featuring profiles of popular YouTube star PewDiePie and League of Legends player Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok. (Traditional athletes also talk about their gaming preferences, including NBA superstar Kevin Durant.)

“eSports is way past cult status at this point – if it’s not already the dominant cultural force of the moment, it’s pretty close to it,” said ESPN The Magazine senior editor Megan Greenwell.

Sports outlets have been skeptical of these competitions in the past, with ESPN’s president John Skipper simply noting that “it’s not a sport.” But the numbers don’t lie. The League of Legends Season 3 World Championship managed to draw over 32 million people online back in 2013 – a number that easily eclipses the 18.8 million that tuned in to game two of this year’s NBA Finals. And streaming channel Twitch has benefitted greatly from such tournaments, with a subscriber count of over 100 million people monthly – and climbing.

It’s just a matter of covering eSports the right way – something The Daily Dot learned when it shifted in that direction back in late 2013. “When you’re covering eSports, the core thing you have to think about is who are you writing for,” said Kevin Morris, reporter for the site. “If you’re a mainstream publication, you need to make stories accessible, but making them accessible also means watering them down, which alienates the hardcore audience.”

ESPN had dabbled in eSports before, with broadcasts from Valve’s International tournaments, but its approach left a few viewers dumbfounded, as they weren’t used to what eSports had to offer. “Just like there’s still a bias in society towards gamers as basement-dwelling nerds, there’s still a bias with ESPN’s audience against competitive gaming,” said Morris. “But it’s a silly argument because ESPN also broadcasts spelling bees and poker.”

The Daily Dot is one of the sites truly devoted to full eSports coverage, with nearly 30-50 stories weekly that cover everything from game highlights to player trades. This manages to bring the site’s viewership to 1.5-2.5 million unique page views on a monthly basis.

It recently launched Leaderboard, a new eSports discussion show that works in a similar vibe to ESPN’s SportsCenter, where Rooster Teeth talent, like Meg Turney, discuss eSports events in a very casual setting – which audiences can easily get into. The latest episode is available below.


Users Are Spending More Time With The Same Number Of Apps

App stores are seeing more and more added on a weekly basis, whether they’re games, health oriented or in another given field. That said, their usage in general may not have risen that much, but the time spent with them certainly has.

That’s according to a new report from Nielsen, according to Mediapost. The report shows that the number of apps has increased quite a bit over the last year, but general usage has remained pretty steady, from the findings in the chart below.

As you can see, between Q4 2012 and Q4 2014, the general usage remains pretty steady, with users utilizing an average of 26.7 apps per month. This is an interesting statistic with the app count being in the “millions,” with new ones “being rolled out every day.”

The numbers show similarity to that of television. Even with more channels introduced in the spectrum, the average television household only watches so much of this programming. Mediapost’s report notes that “despite the exponential growth of media options, people still gravitate to a relatively finite array of options.”

CBS research chief Dave Poltract explained this through a principle of human cognition, known as the “magical number seven, plus or minus three,” which states that with an unlimited number of options, people tend to choose favorites, to the count of seven (plus or minus three).

Despite the fact that the usage is about the same despite the increase in available apps, there is one area where growth is noted — and that’s the time spent with apps.

The amount of time spent with them has reached 37 hours and 28 minutes in the third quarter of 2014 — a 24 percent increase from the previous year, and a 63 percent increase from the same time period in 2012.

“While there appears to be a consumer threshold to the total number of apps people are willing and/or able to actively use during the month, the time they spend engaging on those apps has increased,” said the Nielsen report. “In fact, the monthly time spent per person has increased from 23 hours and two minutes in fourth-quarter 2012 to 37 hours and 28 minutes in fourth-quarter 2014 — a 63 percent rise in two years! So the reward for being one of the chosen apps is heavy engagement by the user.”

Media Kitchen president Barry Lowenthal added, “The real battle is going to be share of icons on screens.” He indicated that even with the large count of apps available, getting customers to download, install and place them on their mobile screen — in a position where they’ll be consistently used — will determine their overall popularity. (Obviously, popular apps like the Facebook Messenger and Netflix are likely to take prominence, even though Nielsen didn’t go into specific apps.)

We talked previously about how overall app usage increased in 2014 by 76 percent, and these numbers indicate that they’ll continue to rise, based on the time spent with them. It’s just a matter of which apps get the most attention now — and that’s what companies will be shooting for.

Spotify Defends Ad-Supported Model With Fast-Growing Audience

Apple certainly made waves earlier this week when the company announced that it would be launching its own music streaming service, Apple Music, later this month. However, Spotify appears to be more than ready for the competition, based on its recent announcements.

According to VentureBeat, the company has revealed that it now has 20 million paying subscribers on its service, out of the total active user base of 75 million people. That means almost a third of those who use the service pay for it to some extent.

This is a huge increase over the numbers that were reported earlier in the year, with five million more paid subscribers and 15 million regular listeners. And it’s a huge jump from the ten million paid subscribers the service had last year.

The company has learned quite a bit from the streaming music business, including expanding to new channels, such as the PlayStation 4 game console. That, along with the fact that it has now paid more than $3 billion in royalties to artists and rights holders, indicates that it’s more than ready for whatever Apple Music intends to throw at it.

On top of that, it has some funding to back it up. It was reported (via the Wall Street Journal) that Spotify has acquired $526 million in funding, giving the company a total overall value of $8.53 billion, and doubling its overall funding since its creation (back in 2006) to over $1 billion. Companies taking part in the investment include Halcyon Asset Management, GSV Capital, Technology Crossover Ventures, Northzone, Goldman Sachs, and P. Schoenfeld Asset Management.

One thing worth noting with paid subscribers is that the number has risen quite a bit when it comes to measurement of the paid-to-unpaid ratio. In previous times, it sat firmly at 25 percent, but that number has now risen to 27 percent, indicating that there’s more interest in subscribing to its services (and thus eliminating ads in the process). Though it’s only a slight increase, it’s still an increase nevertheless.

Now it’s just a matter of time to see just how well the company fares against Apple’s service. It certainly seems more than ready for it.

Oculus VR Rebrands, Prepares For New Vision

Oculus VR is more than ready for next week’s Electronic Entertainment Expo. The forthcoming Oculus Rift headset is sure to take focus at a number of booths at the event, but that isn’t stopping the company from making its impact before the show even starts.

The company just launched a brand new website that features a new logo, removing the old “eye” logo that it was known for in favor of something a little more cryptic, as seen above. In addition, it has also kicked off a countdown clock, which is ticking away to a press reveal that is set to take place tomorrow in San Francisco.

The Oculus has gotten a fair share of attention since social site Facebook acquired the company (and the VR headset) for a whopping $2 billion. News on the headset was quiet for a while after that, until the company confirmed last month that it would finally make its way to retail in early 2016. Tomorrow’s press announcement should solidify launch details even further, and maybe even give consumers an idea of what to expect when it finally arrives.

The rebranding of the company isn’t too drastic – the word “Oculus” is still very evident with advertising, and a strange oval-shaped logo hanging above it indicates a design similar to that of the Rift’s viewer. And the timing is very good, especially considering that a lot of pre-E3 announcements are making the rounds, in-between new game reveals, trailers and other news. So Oculus is sure to fit right in with the hype, no matter what it intends to announce during tomorrow’s showcase.

There’s still some doubt in terms of how well-received the headset will be – and just what kind of pricing is being planned. Nevertheless, we’ll have a better idea in just a day’s time, and it’s sure to be virtually exciting for those who can’t wait to see it debut on the market –several years after the initial KickStarter campaign took place.

Facebook Has Its First Game In ‘Doodle Draw’

Doodle Draw

We’ve talked previously about Facebook’s interest in launching playable games on its popular Messenger app, although no timetable was given when it came to when they would actually arrive. However, it appears that the revolution is starting sooner rather than later — with Doodle Draw Game leading the charge.

TechCrunch has reported that the first game for Facebook Messenger has arrived, the aforementioned Doodle {link no longer active}. The game works like the classic Pictionary (or the more popular mobile game Draw Something), where users can doodle pictures while chatting with others in the service. The app is available in the overflow menu, although the general Messenger app must first be downloaded either on Google Play or the App Store.

Previously, Facebook was only interested in content creation tools or meme generators in its Messenger app, so users could send more personalized messages to one another. However, with the introduction of this game, a whole new avenue could open up for similar apps — although it doesn’t appear Facebook wants to go too overboard on games just yet.

It provides the company the opportunity to compete with other chat services that launched games with their apps, including Viber, WeChat and Line, though its effectiveness has yet to be gauged, since Doodle did just launch. However, considering that millions of people use Messenger on a daily basis, it shouldn’t take long for virtual drawings to start making the rounds.

One thing to watch out for is an overabundance in spam messages, which some games on Facebook have been prone to. “But done wrong, these games could spawn Messenger spam the same way Facebook desktop games polluted the News Feed,” said TechCrunch reporter Josh Constine. “Companies like Zynga developed exploitative game mechanics where you earned in-game rewards for inviting friends and pestering them to play with requests and News Feed posts. It got so bad that Facebook almost entirely shut off these viral channels to avoid ruining the feed for everyone, and social game companies were hit hard by their diminished ability to recruit new users.”

We’ll see just how far Doodle goes with it success — and how carefully Facebook can gauge it.

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The Evolution Of Mass Marketing At Variety’s Tune In! TV Summit

At Variety’s sold out Tune In! TV Summit in Beverly Hills, TV executives shared the stage with some new media company representatives from the likes of Facebook and Twitter to talk about what is still great about the medium.

“We have started to think of TV as an art form and not a platform. We should look at impact and not viewers and impressions,” said Kern Schireson, EVP, Data Strategy & Consumer Intelligence at Viacom.

“We don’t want to lose the power of TV, for us as storytellers and for our advertisers, which is not just about scale, but about creating culturally impactful  moments of time.”

Brian Robbins, Founder and CEO, Awesomeness TV, gave his colleagues in the TV industry a quick reality check on a panel titled “State of the Multiplatform Television Industry” where he represented the voice of millennial audience:

“I haven’t watched linear television for so long, but I happened to do it last night. I realized how long it’s been, because when a commercial came on and interrupted the show I was surprised. What a horrible user experience!”

To that point, the business model in television is still heavily based on selling 30-second commercial spots in and around linear programming on broadcast as well as cable television shows. Why? Because it still works.

Even digital-savvy advertisers from mobile game companies like Supercell and King are shelling out big bucks for traditional TV commercials in the U.S. because it is an effective way for them to reach the masses they need to bring in new players to their games.

Even with technology like DVRs allowing viewers to opt out of commercials and subscription services such as Netflix making binge-watching possible without commercials, the 30-second spot will probably be around for a while longer.

The new way is to think about it, though, is not as the holy grail of marketing, but rather as the megaphone through which you bring the audience to digital platforms.

“I see Twitter as the world’s largest couch. We create that sense of community and water-cooler effect around TV shows,” said Andrew Adashek, Head of Television for Twitter.

“Television companies want to know where the show goes after that short moment of time on-air. If we just all collectively agree on how to measure that off-air engagement and we would unlock a whole new universe for storytelling.”

[a]listdaily is a media partner for Tune In! To read more Tweets from the event, check out #TVSUMMIT tweets.