Long-form content upsets mobile video expectations
Much to the surprise of analysts and pundits who proclaimed the future of mobile video lies in short-form, "snackable" content, long-form content like primetime dramatic series is proving surprisingly popular among consumers, according to Nielsen Mobile.
Nielsen reports NBC is drawing the largest mobile video audience--citing internal network numbers, the Peacock generated 1.8 million mobile video streams during the fall, 1.3 million of them devoted to full episodes of programs like Heroes, The Office and Lipstick Jungle. "Long-form is doing better for us than short-form, and yes, we're surprised," NBC.com general manager Steve Andrade tells MediaWeek. "But we shouldn't be surprised, since we had the same thought online, and that's proven not to be true."
That doesn't mean viewers are consuming hour-long programs in one sitting, however. CBS splits episodes of series like CSI into six or seven clearly labeled segments, enabling mobile subscribers to screen the first seven minutes of a show and then come back at a later time to view the next seven minutes. NBC employs a similar strategy. "The whole idea of snackable is true," said CBS Mobile senior VP Jeff Sellinger. "People have less time, but don't want less content."
Sellinger adds subscribers are far less likely to search for content on their phones compared to the web, meaning familiar, heavily promoted shows like CSI fare best on mobile. "What we find is that discovery is a problem," he said. CBS nevertheless remains dedicated to creating original content for the mobile platform, and has so far produced close to 1,000 episodes of Daily Delivery, which features brief blasts of entertainment news.
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