Just about three-and-a-half years ago, I made a pretty big change in ye ole career path, and left a life-time in production, post and digital media to join the rock-star of all data warehousing and analytics companies, Teradata. Yes, my role was to oversee Media & Entertainment go-to-market strategy and marketing ā but it still felt like a lifetime away from encoding and transcoding, and content distribution, and DI, andā¦. To be honest, I wondered for a long time if I might lose my M&E chops.
Life has a funny way of coming full circle. Just last Thursday, I had the privilege of joining some of Hollywoodās best and brightest on a panel to discuss big data analytics in media & entertainment. An event hosted by MESA and the Hollywood IT Society, and sponsored by Teradata (among others), the Big Data Analytics Breakfast marked the first exclusively M&E-focused big data event of its kind.
Flanked by senior execs from Disney, Sony and NBCUniversal (read MESAās write-upĀ here), our panel spent more than 60-minutes gabbing about the criticality of big data analytics āand analytics in general āĀ in Media & Entertainment in front of another 70 senior-level technology executives.
The interest and excitement in the room was evident ā so evident that we were unceremoniously cut-off and booted when our Q&A threatened to well-exceed our allotted time. Itās not that often I see a new business opportunity incite that kind of interest and engagement. There is so much to be said on the role of big data analytics for our industry.
Here are some gems for big data use that weāve seen with our customers, and which were echoed throughout the big data event:
- Programming & Scheduling ā using Twitter, Facebook and other social media feedback to make ad-hoc scheduling changes
- Ad Effectiveness ā using big data to attribute ad engagement (say, via the STB or second screen)
- Theatrical Marketing On-Demand ā shifting marketing allocations and spend in near-real-time based on regional box-office outcomes
- Content Recommendations ā one word: Netflix
- Site Personalization ā understanding your customerās title, genre and other preferences via big data, and using that insight to tailor their experience with your site, or target them to receive specific marketing communications
For about the last 18 months, Iāve been watching the intensity around analytics skyrocket with studios, OTTs, cable companies, publishers and other Media & Entertainment companies. Itās honestly about time. I really believe analytics are at the core of our industryās future ā particularly as we evolve to have the kinds of deep one-to-one audience relationships that new distribution platforms (like OTT and Second Screen) allow.
As for me? I guess it makes me feel a little smug ā confirming for me over and over again that my supposed career-path change wasnāt all that much of a change; it was really nothing more than an evolution. Thatās good for all of us!
Hereās a tale of your average DVD-buying consumer:
Sheās a fan ā with a longstanding love affair with Harry Potter (sorry, have to pick on someone today. Guess thatās you, Warner Brothers!). You know this because sheās a Facebook fan (nearly 43 million of āem and counting); sheās clicked-through to the Harry Potter website thanks to a paid keyword search; and, once there, she registers on the site, opening the door to targeted email after targeted email.
And, then she does it ā what you want her to do, that is. She purchases the DVD. Hooray! Your marketing efforts paid off! Or, did they? Trouble is, in todayās concept of marketing attribution, marketers are hard-pressed to understand the sway and significance of each marketing message on the ultimate goal ā a transaction.
Recent market research by Forrester found that with online marketing budgets growing the need for tools to understand the complex interplay and attribution of mobile, social media, online ads, search and web visits was a high priority for most marketers.
The complexity of todayās customer journey is a story of Big Data Analytics when viewed through the eyes of a marketer. Understanding Attribution means understanding multi-structured data, in big volumes and being able to use sophisticated algorithms to find key metrics for data driven decisions.
Consider this nugget from Teradata Aster, the Big Data Analytics company. They recently shared customer stories for their digital marketing attribution solution. Leading brands such as Barnes & Noble, Gilt Groupe, Insight Express and Razorfish shared their experiences using Asterās Attribution solution:
ā¢ “It is well-recognized that Barnes & Noble has made a profound transformation from being a physical seller of books to a digital technology company. A key component of that is the ability we have gained to leverage ‘big data’ to derive consumer insights that are deployed multi-channel,” said Marc Parrish, vice president of Retention and Loyalty Marketing, Barnes & Noble. “Our customers benefit from our ability to personalize their interactions. We know them, and it shows.” Parrish also stated that “This shift to multi-touch marketing optimization is changing the vendor landscape. Teradata Aster is clearly a leader in moving the industry from the old world of analytic sampling, to the new big data world of complex, multi-factorial customer intelligence.”
Teradata Aster has published a white paper that looks at these challenges and offers some perspectives on how to solve themā¦ take a look by clickingĀ here!
Live Nation’s Ticketmaster subsidiary has tapped Teradata Corp.’s data infrastructure expertise to launch a new data analysis service, aimed at helping Ticketmaster clients boost ticket sales. Ticketmasterās new LiveAnalytics service will run on a Teradata Data Warehouse Appliance, while Teradata Professional Services will support Ticketmaster in building out the underlying architecture to expand and improve the use of its fan database.
āAnalysis of fan data is the keystone in our plan to help our clients connect with fans and to ultimately sell more tickets,ā says John Forese, SVP of LiveAnalytics, in a statement. āWith the detailed data analysis fueled by the Teradata Data Warehouse Appliance, our clients will be able to be more efficient in their fan acquisition and retention efforts, and to measure and benchmark their performance, no matter their category of live entertainment.ā
Data warehousing company Teradata announced Thursday that it is acquiring ābig dataā analytics firm Aster Data in a $263 million transaction.
Teradata says the acquisition, which is set to close in the second quarter, will enable the company to expand its offering of management services for massive volumes of data, coming from sources such as online video and social networks.
Aster Data chief technology officer Tasso Argyros says the combined companies will work to āaccelerate the ability of customers to harness the large volumes of diverse data that corporations must deal with and analyze.ā
Scott Gnau, Teradataās chief development officer, added that big data analytics represents āa great opportunity and [is] something our customers have been asking for.ā
Teradata had acquired an 11% ownership interest in Aster Data in September 2010; the $263 million price is for the remaining ownership interest in the company.
Thomas Tileston, VP of business decision support for Warner Home Video, tells CIO magazine that the home entertainment division will soon be able to forecast within 10% of actual sales, thanks to an overhaul of its sales and operations planning process. Previously, CIO reports, the studio could estimate sales only to within 40%.
Improvements include standardization of data definitions across various business groups, as well as migration of data from analyst desktops to a central Teradata warehouse. Analysts also have created more sales performance variables using SAS development tools, logging criteria such as title genre and general box office trends.
Teradata’s Colleen Quinn springs for a top-of-the-line iPad and mulls the ramifications of the app economy that the tablet device drives. “The real power of the app in all its incarnations isnāt limited it being vehicle to create ad inventory or drive new forms of consumer engagement,” she writes. Ā ”The shift is transformational ā and the power, at the core, is the ability to aggregate deep data and deliver optimized and targeted services through the userās preferred platform.” Read more at Quinn’s blog here.
ByĀ Colleen Quinn
I write this from the room of a lovely hotel, where Iāve just been booted from a customer meeting (for which I busted my tail to prepare) because I am too ill. Ironically, Iāve been ill for a couple of daysālike brutally illābut not ill enough to score a reprieve before making the 120-mile drive. My throat is raw and swollen, fever, chills.
My house is like a Petri dish, so Iām mildly grateful to be away from it at the moment. Iām not the only one sick. And so, until now, there weāve been, in a classic Spanish-style ābungalowā (read: tiny), all sprawled out. Youād think weād be miserable. And, we would beā but weāve been saved from ourselves (again) by a higher power. Steve Jobs.
Let me explain. We are a bit religious about the man in our house for many reasons: 1) Heās adoptedāso is my son! We love great role models. While most toddlers could name purple dinosaurs, my two-year-old could name the CEO of Apple; 2) Heās a survivorāwe think his brave and sometimes public battle with illness will come to benefit survivors everywhere; and 3) Heās justā¦ insanelyā¦ brilliant!
All this said, I had cheaped out on buying a new iPad. I knew the ābottom-of-the-lineā wouldnāt have enough storage, but I couldnāt bring myself to fork over the $800+ for the best. So, I did nothing but stew in my own envy as friend after friend took the plunge, while I boasted about my newfound frugality.
Then, on Wednesday, we cracked. Under the auspices of needing to stay on top of new media trends (itās what we do professionally), we finally bought the darn thing.Ā And, as if the fates were somehow in the know, the moment we walked through the door of our television-less house with our new Apple baby, it happened. This blanket of fever descendedā¦ and within hours, we were all incomprehensibly sick.
Enter Steve. Read more
Improving Your Performance at the Shelf: Event To Examine Best Practices in Demand-Based Replenishment and Allocation
Teradata is sponsoring a roundtable discussion in San Francisco next week between manufacturers and retailers on demand planning, with speakers to include representatives from Saks Fifth Avenue and Stanford University.
As in other sectors such as grocery and fashion apparel, manufacturers and retailers in the media & entertainment space continue to grapple with how best to approach fluctuations in consumer demand. Terdata notes that improvements in active data warehousing and demand planning solutions make it possible to accurately predict and adjust to demand on a SKU-store basis more than ever before. Retailers and manufacturers that align their allocation capabilities with an effective sales and operations planning process not only improve their on-shelf availability and turns, but gain a competitive advantage, Teradata says.
The event takes place the morning of Aug. 11 at the Grand Hyatt Union Square in San Francisco, CA. For program and registration details visit http://www.teradata.com/t/WorkArea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=15103. Capacity is limited.
Teradata’s Colleen Quinn on the recent federal court decision in Viacom v. Google: with YouTube found to have been acting within the DMCA’s safe harbor provisions, the verdict effectively places significant operational burdens on Viacom and other content owners. Read the blog post here.
ByĀ Colleen Quinn
June 23rd,Ā 2010. 6/23/10. Itās a real shame the numbers donāt have more of a ring to them. A verdict on the 10thĀ of October (e.g. 10/10/10) might be more resonant. But, even if the date doesnāt roll off the tongue, mark my words: this is a date which will live in infamy for content distributors and content owners everywhere.
This is the day Google won. In a potentially landmark decision (though one with many, many appeals in its future), a federal judge in New York threw out Viacomās $1 billion copyright infringement lawsuit against Googleās YouTube.
Itās a long storyāand one made-for-Hollywood with its subterfuge and plot twists. But, in short, Viacom sued Youtube for boat loads of money for copyright infringement– that is, knowingly posting copyrighted materials to the site, without financial remuneration to the rights holders.Ā In one of the truly major tests of the āsafe harborā provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the judge found that YouTube/ Google were not liable. Title II of the DMCA generally protects a Web site from liability for copyrighted material uploaded by its users as long as the operator of the site takes down the material when notified by its rightful owner that it was uploaded without permission.Ā So, in the judgeās estimation, YouTube met this test.
But, hereās the good stuff: the case evidence dated back to some pretty shady pre-Google-acquisition days, and highlighted alleged tactics that pointed fingers at YouTubeās founders. Equally bad behavior was alleged on the part of Viacom, who was accused of hiring a clan of promotions companies to upload āleakedā Viacom content to the site under pseudonyms. Naughty, naughty.
The fact of the matter is that YouTubeāand YouTube-like servicesāare the way of the future in the eyes of the consumer. And, while no one can say YouTube is perfect in its attempt to āprotectā content-owners, they surely seem to meet the DMCA provisions with the processes and technologies theyāve implemented to alert copyright owners. I just listened to a fascinating TED Talk last week from Googleās Margaret Gould Stewart, where she outlined YouTubeās methodologies to alert content owners to rights infringements.
YouTube has created a massive registry for rights holders where they can upload reference copies of their content. Then, YouTube runs EVERY piece of newly uploaded content against that registryāanalyzing picture, audio, and moreāto identify matches. The system is so sophisticated, allegedly, that it can account for quality degradation, video effects (slow-motion or speed-up), clip-extracts and more. When a match is found, the system alerts the copyright owners, who can then block the content altogether, or monetize it through advertising and product promotion.Ā Itās a fascinating processāand the technology was so, well, cool that I was awestruck.
Then, I waited a few minutes, and started to scoff at this notion of protection for content owners. Perhaps itās all my years having been a ācontent creatorā and working for and with content owners. But, I couldnāt beat away the nagging question: why is the burden on the rights holder? And, I assure you, that same question was likely one of the largest on the minds of Viacom execs as they embarked on a now 4-year journey to take-out YouTube.Ā Itās a large burden indeed.Ā To protect your content, you must encode, upload and capture metadata about EVERY piece of content you own; you must think through and capture your protection policies about that content; and, you must review notifications when protected content is uploaded to determine the desired response (e.g. remove vs. monetize). Whipping out my calculator here, I see that amounts to a load of operational cost, resources and time for already strapped businesses.Ā Imagine similar and probably more unwieldy processes taking place across other UGC aggregation sites. Iām not sure how that scales, even in the face of the revenue upside.
So, here I leave you with two sides of the coin. I should say that I am pleased with the verdict. And, I am, for the most part, impressed with YouTubeās processes to screen content, though I hesitate to see YouTube in the same beatific light they themselves suggest. Thereās no question that YouTube and rights holders need to be, more than ever, partners in this eco-system. And, Iām not so sure we needed a judge to even confirm that. But, confirm he did. Hereās to 6-2-3. A milestone, indeed.
Teradata is teaming with SAP and Capgemini to launch Intellectual Property Rights Insight, a licensing rights tracking system designed to help studios maximize post-theatrical profitability of films and other entertainment content.
The system offers centralized management of all dimensions of a given piece of content, such as licensing availabilities, contract expiration, and current title performance.
Built on Teradataās data warehouse platform, IP Rights Insight delivers a set of dashboards and queries via SAPās BusinessObjects Xcelsius and SAP BusinessObjects Web Intelligence software. Capgemini provides the integration services between a studioās existing disparate rights management systems and the Teradata data warehouse.
Nearly 80 percent of film and content revenues come from post-theatrical channels, Teradata notes in a statement.
āItās not that studios lack the information they need,ā says David Grant, Teradataās VP of Industry Marketing and Solutions. āItās that the information is currently spread out across the enterprise. To most profitably manage their IP, [studios] need to bring the disparate pieces together in a centralized environment.ā
In tandem with the IP Rights Insight launch, Capgemini and Teradata are sponsoring an executive event in London on the evening of July 5 that will examine the concept of digital content services. Interested companies can RSVP to the event by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for responses is June 30.
Colleen Quinn, Global Program Director of Interactive Advertising and Media & Entertainment at supply chain systems providerĀ Teradata, found plenty of recognition of the digital supply chainās importance among entertainment executives at the recent ESCA EDGE conference in Los Angeles. Now comes the hard part for content owners ā using the digital supply chain to drive profitability. āMultiplatform distribution, with its dizzying array of processes, specifications, possibilitiesā its sheer scaleā requires content owners to optimize processes that have scarcely been introduced,ā Quinn writes in a new blog post. Read more
By Colleen Quinn
I pride myself, perhaps without merit, on creating witty, funny, life-affirming blog posts that are generally joys to read. Amusing and insightful. Thereās something you donāt get every day. But, thereās nothing amusing about losing money and nothing insightful about missed opportunity.
Todayās post, my friends, asks the question: has the time come for our emerging digital supply chain to stop emerging, and start achieving its promise as a fully realized, fully accountable line of business. Is our baby ready, to put it another way, to take its first real steps into adulthood?
Iām ruminating today on discussion from this yearās Entertainment Supply Chain Academy EDGE conference, which took place a couple of weeks ago in Los Angeles. I attended the ESCA event last year for the first time, and it struck me how much our worldā the world of making, managing, moving and monetizing contentā has changed.
The event was a smashing success (both in 2009 and 2010, I hear), succeeding where other industry shows hadnāt yet. You see, I never thought of myself as a āSupply Chainā person. Supply Chain (yawn!) focused almost exclusively on the movement of physical goods. Supply Chain was for duller professional adventures than my own. Oh sure, weād bandied about the term ādigital supply chainā some years back in digital entertainment, but we thought our world unencumbered by the challenges faced by our friends in Home Entertainment. And, Iām sure the Home Entertainment crowd shared a set of opinions about digital media: new technology cowboys running roughshod over a seasoned industry. Or, as NBC Universalās Jeff Zucker once suggested, none-too-serious dabblers in a world of digital pennies. Analog dollars were the real business.
After attending ESCA in 2009, it became apparent that the organizers, at least, were far savvier than the aforementioned āthemsā and āus-es.ā ESCA was making the point that we were in this together. Suddenly, digital media was everyoneās problemā including the Supply Chain guys. Iād never heard so many people fretting about the digital media supply chain in one place. I nearly laughed out loud when I realized the panel Iād been asked to sit on felt more like coming home than work.
It was time to listen to each other, it seemed. There were many reasons for our collective interest. Most were looking for the inflection point for digital content distributionā the point at which physical businesses were perceived as having been trumped by the new kid; others were inheriting the digital businesses under their Home Entertainment umbrellas; and still others were realizing that we all just needed to get along, if nothing else.
Jump to 2010. Studios have been facing the hard-realities of multi-platform distribution for something approaching five years. The Digital Supply Chainā yes, thatās the official term nowā is no longer a line of business for dabblers. Studios must shift from thinking of these businesses as emergent and transitional to steady and performing.Ā And, while 2009 showed ESCA organizers at the forefront, the conversation in 2010 reflected that the general audience was in agreement.
By acknowledging that digital businesses are, in some ways, the studiosā future, folks from across the enterprise now have serious a stake in making these businesses successful.
The notion of digital pennies isnāt bearing out at all. Perhapsā and still, only in some casesā the per-unit revenues for digital downloads may be less than physical, but the volumes are greater and margins ostensibly higher. This isnāt news. Time Warnerās CFO, John Martin, said just last week that Warner is āaggressively transitioningā its physical business because the company anticipates the success of its digital businesses. Martin, Iām sure, also knows that digital businesses are successful only when they can scale to drive the right margins across this fragmented ecosystem.
I use the word āanticipateā intentionally. Climbing that maturity curve to better margin and profitability in these new channels is tough. Multiplatform distribution, with its dizzying array of processes, specifications, possibilitiesā its sheer scaleā requires content owners to optimize processes that have scarcely been introduced. The need to drive cost out of the supply chainā this new supply chainā is critical to convert those supposed pennies to dollars. I can see Home Entertainment executives nodding their heads from here.
There are several areas where content owners can start to see immediate relief. Iām frankly out of time to do justice to these areas in this post, so Iāll name them now to give you food for thought, with the promise to elaborate later.
The first is metadata management. Iāll just ask anyone reading this post to take a quick count of the number of title or product management systems in use at your company today. Iād ask you to mentally run through the process of prepping a single title for output. Enough said.
What about the promise of digital asset management for content re-use and repurposing? Does it bear out when you think about how many times you re-encode the same piece of content to fulfill to your distributors?
Finally, imagine for a moment you do fulfill content everywhere it needs to go, on-time and in the right package. Do you have the tools in place to track that contentās performance against your bottom line? Is it easy to know how the licensing deal performs relative to others like it?
Thereās something exciting about watching your baby graduate and head off to college…this is, as pathetic how it sounds, how I feel about digital supply chain. And, along with collegeā if I may painfully draw out this metaphor a bit moreā comes additional responsibility. Say, making ends meet on your own. Maturity has its downside, I guess. But, I have total faith in my baby. I may need a box of tissues for proud tears at ESCA 2011. Stay tuned.
Colleen Quinn, Global Program Director of Interactive Advertising and Media & Entertainment at supply chain systems provider Teradata, shines a light on the shortcomings of vendor-managed inventory in home entertainment retail. According to Teradata, retail stock-outs stand at somewhere between 5% and 8%, while overstock conditions continue to climb as a result of poor forecasting. āThis means that when people ā like me ā want to buy a specific new release title, itās often not available,ā Quinn writes. Read more
I live and die by the internet. I work remotely, and have loads of embarrassing evidence of angry confrontations with my spouse over *my* allegations of *his* abuse of bandwidth while we work from our home offices. (Itās never his fault, but Iām Italian, and we have tempers. We blame people. Itās in our blood.)
I buy my shoes online. I buy my sonās shoes online; and, his clothes; and, his toys; and, his books; and, our Equal for Godās sake (as we spend a lot of time in Europe, where the artificial sweeteners are rubbish).
I buy DVDs online too, for the most partāwhen I actually buy DVDs, that is. You see, as I live and die by the internet, our preferred movie viewing method-of-choice is streaming or downloading. But, we have a 4-year-old. And 4-year-olds alone might single-handedly save the physical media business. If youāre familiar at all with the media consumption habits of young children, you know that ārepetitiveā and ādurableā are key benefits.
When I purchase DVDs, I occasionally buy them in the brick-and-mortar store, by the way. Take today, for example. I am passing through an airport and am in need of a present for the child to assuage my guilt over yet another business trip. DVDs work. Iām looking for a new releaseāDisneyās The Princess and the Frog– but the title is not on the shelf. I rummage through the discount bin, find something for $5.99 (think Dora the Explorer, or the like), pay and off I go thinking, āNo problem. Iāll buy it on Amazon.ā
And with that last sentence, every executive working for a large content owner should cringe. This is a critical point of failure, lost revenue and lost opportunity for studios and retailersāand the out-of-stock problem happens every day.
The problem is an outgrowth of more than a decadeās worth of VMI (Vendor Managed Inventory)āwhere the studios have managed inventory for retailers using sophisticated processes and technologies. But, like almost everything else in the studio/content owner ecosystem these days, things have become more complex. I talk often about proliferation of digital media formats and channelsābut the reality is, the same thing is happening in physical channels as well. Thanks Blu-ray and BD Liveāoh, and you too Xbox.
In a VMI relationship, optimizing demand and supply between the studios, distributor, logistics carriers, the merchandiser, and the retailer is the key to managing operational challenges.Ā But, things break-down. And, when they do, the failures are costly. In other industries, like grocery and retail, leading trade organizations have reported that vendors experience 6% to 18% of their out-of-stocks for new items and promoted items.
Teradataās studies show that retail industry stock-outs are between 5% and 8% and that overstock conditions ā the result of poor forecasts and buys ā continue to climb. Ā This means that when peopleālike meāwant to buy a specific new release title, itās often not available.
From here, several scenarios can happenāall of them bad for your business, by the way. Option 1: I go somewhere else. The studio still books the revenue of the sale in that caseābut itās bad news for the retailer. Option 2: This is worse. Perhaps I donāt buy at allāa lose-lose for retailer and content owner. Finally, Option 3: This is just as bad. I get smart. I wait. And, in 30-daysāwhen those critical two weeks for new release sales have passedāI march into a big box retailer, rummage through a stack of steeply marked-down titles, and pick my choice at a discount thanks to lots of overstock..
Iām sure youāre thinking that this supply chain stuff is some of the most riveting material youāve read in weeks. It is! And, there are far smarter people than me talking about the impact of out-of-stocksāand the steep revenue losses they cause. Iād encourage you to check out the Global Supply Chain Forum taking place on May 25, 2010 at Stanford University, where multiple industries, including Media & Entertainment, are coming together to talk about how to manage and improve costly supply chain issues like this.
I assure youāand if youāre in Home Entertainment you knowāthat this is a real issue for content owners, studios and their retail partners who often get one crack at capturing full-price for DVDs.Ā So, whatās the solution? For starters, VMI needs to take a leap forward and enable detailed forecasting where the rubber meets the road: at the store and SKU level; forecasts which take into account subtleties that drive performance– they recognize historical performance, are deep in seasonal and causal identification and respond automatically to the latest trends.Ā Itās possible. We know because Teradataās Demand Chain Management Solution does it, saving customers bundles in the process.
That doesnāt do the retailer whose shop I just left any good at the moment. I still didnāt get what I needed, though my guilty conscience is cleared thanks to a cheaper second choice.Ā One thingās for sureāIāll just buy it on Amazon.
SilkRoute Global, a provider of retail supply chain solutions, launches a “demand chain management” software/service package for product replenishment forecasting in partnership with dataĀ warehousing company Teradata.
Under the agreement, retailers will contract with SilkRoute Global for the use of the Teradata DCM solution running on a Teradata Active Data Warehouse.Ā Teradata DCM focuses on consumer demand at individual stores and uses point-of-sale data and other information to create sales forecasts of each item, by store and by day. These forecasts serve to pull inventory through the supply chain based on expected sales across the store network. This is in contrast to the older supply line approach that pushes products to the marketplace based on available inventory.
“Utilizing the software-as-a-service model is a great way for retailers and their suppliers to reduce the typical solution deployment time and cost and to free their resources to focus on core business activities,” says Ron Lund, SilkRoute Global CEO.