July 20, 2007 |
CBS has apparently recently realized that in order to bring in more traffic and to increase views of its online video, it must become viral… in the sense that they must spread their video content across the web. That did, of course, play a big role in the massive growth of YouTube, which is currently the most popular destination for online video.
Quincy Smith, the president of CBS Interactive, has stated that "CBS is all about open, nonexclusive partnerships." He realizes that only offering video through CBS.com is not the answer to reaching a larger viewer audience. Instead, the network is going to where the viewers are. Unlike NBC, CBS has decided to adopt a more "open network" style marketing solution.
The plan is to make CBS online television and video content available through at least 400 sites throughout the web by this fall, as announced by the television network's interactive division. Perhaps the CBS executives read Adam Lashinsky's Fortune article.
To get started on fulfilling it's lofty claims, CBS executives made sure to note that they have already partnered with 24 websites, the list of which includes Brightcove, Comcast's The Fan, and TV.com, among several others. Execs said that each of it's already acquired partners is offering video content and clips that best match each individual site's demographic and best interests.
The initiative has already payed off, as CBS.com has already noticed a significant increase in traffic to its website. Unique viewership to the site has jumped from 21 million unique users per month just 2 months ago in May to the current 134 million. This is due to people who link in from it's existing partners. There is no word yet on whether the efforts have affected TV viewership ratings.
According to it's chief marketing officer, SEO techniques have also been put into place as CBS has purchased plenty of possible keywords, including the names of the stars of various CBS series. Other efforts include allowing the ability to share show logos and other content on social networking profiles, a method several MySpace users have already been using for YouTube videos.
If you ask me, CBS is making the right move by sharing and being more open. If they are able to achieve their goal by this fall, it will be an amazing accomplishment and it will provide CBS with a headstart on the competition in online video efforts. Will it be enough though, to increase television ratings? I mean… isn't that, after all, up the quality of the content available and not the quantity?