Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has predicted the end of classic television as we know it by 2025. The “Media Activity Guide” study undertaken by the Seven-One Media TV marketing firm, on the other hand, is celebrating the fact that TV still remains the most popular medium. What does Benjamin Buchholz, CEO of nacamar GmbH think? The company can look back at more than 20 years of experience in the media industry – back then with the distribution of video and audio content, today with New TV, OTT environment.
Which new possibilities do you see in making money from moving images?
Enjoying high quality content without having to pay for it will no longer be possible in the long term. We have noticed that people are quite prepared to pay money for good content. This is why it is crucial here to see who can provide such content. That being said, providers such as Amazon or Netflix have shown that such developments need not originate from the established players in the market. Perhaps overlooked program providers will take us all by surprise.
What technologies and trends do you see coming for television?
One of the central themes in all product areas is the personalization of offers. In the future, users will acquire their very own content purely based on their user behaviour. The driving force behind this development is data. This is why nacamar always places the topics of analysis and evaluability at the forefront of all our products. “Big data” is a subject that is cropping up more and more in the context of streaming.
What potentials can classic television utilize?
Moving images can help make products more comprehensible and assist consumers with their buying decisions. Videos are now finding their way into more e-commerce scenarios and also onto online marketplaces. There is no better way to demonstrate a product than with a video. This is where we see the potential for AddVideo and other nacamar components.
Which opportunities does classical television have to grasp in order to retake the momentum again?
Technically speaking, there are already plenty of market-proven techniques to enrich the linear TV format with interactive elements and add-ons. nacamar is currently marketing our own Smart TV product and HbbTV streaming servers, which are being used by major German broadcasters.
However, the problem from today’s perspective is not technology, but rather the usage patterns of the audience. The “red button” on the remote control, for example, is not seen quite so positively. This has also reduced the interests of programmers in creating new formats. Perhaps the rise of Netflix and Co. will once again lead to a rethink. One thing is clear: nothing will come of it without investment. Most innovative ideas fail due to lack of affordability. A chicken or the egg problem.
What changes in media usage have you seen since streaming services successfully entered the market?
We have been on the market with streaming services since the late nineties. It’s no doubt that the use of media has changed drastically since this time. Back then, news was broadcast via our CDN and was an accompanying medium, another channel. But it was still a matter of “switching on” at 8 pm. The changes we have been faced with since then have been very central to developments in society in general. These days I can go shopping at the supermarket around the corner virtually 24/7. We have become accustomed to consuming media at any time in much the same way, and this is where we come in. Media is no longer linked to time or place. This trend will continue to shift the landscape and requires a rethink of where media is created or marketed.
How does the streaming market in Germany compare with other countries?
Streaming media has actually also gained a firm foothold in daily media usage across Germany. Where “streaming” may just be a concept to a few users, it is just the same as before: the user “turns the radio on” and can listen to their stations. Yet today this can be done via IP. This convergent approach to the media is a positive development in my view.
Where is nacamar positioned in this market?
It is important for us to be a strong partner in the digital transformation of the media sector. In the future, we will rely on components, which will make it easy for all companies to benefit from digital media and data services. Nacamar’s add-on strategy is strongly focused on demand and will lead to a much wider portfolio of smaller products.
In doing so, we follow the SaaS concept. Components are primarily used by APIs and can be linked to existing backends or content management systems. There is already a first example of this with the new AddVideo product.
What are the next steps for nacamar?
Video on the web will continue to experience an enormous increase in usage. Nacamar has therefore set itself the objective in 2017 of gaining shares in new markets and segments with AddVideo. Nacamar relies on fully-automated processes in sales and billing, thereby addressing customers worldwide.
It is our aim to complete the transition from pure content delivery specialists to a product company embracing the digital transformation and to open up new markets and segments. Within this context, we shall also take a completely new approach by benefiting from partnerships with specialists, such as billwerk, to create successful and scalable products.
Many thanks for the interview!