The Production Room was founded in 1995 as one of the first full time digital commercial recording facilties on the central coast of California. We started with 4 stereo tracks, 16 mb of ram and a 250 mb hard drive. A lot has happened since then. Today we're focusing on ways to serve clients who are creating web based media content. This includes strategic planning to integrate the benefits of traditional media, web design and IT solutions into new programs produced especially for on-line consumers. Join in the conversation. Throw rocks at glass houses. Share your vision of the future. This is the most progressive time in the media arts since Johannes Gutenburg invented movable type!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Economy - Don't Panic!

I feel like Arthur Dent from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

Today it seems that everything I know is wrong. So Besides recommending that you read Douglas Adams book (and suggesting that you always keep your towel with you) there are several things to keep in mind.

The first is: Don't Panic.

There are a lot of things I could worry about right now but unless time starts running backward we're not going to return to the way things were last October. We're in the midst of a moment of historic and permanent change.

So we'll have to move forward, knowing that change always creates opportunity.

Have a Coke and I'll tell you what I think.

Radio was relatively new in 1929. Talking pictures were also new. Long distance telephone was still expensive and communication in general was still limited.

During the Depression, radio boomed. After the initial crash, businesses that needed to get back on their feet discovered advertising on the radio to reach a mass market. If you were selling champagne and caviar this probably didn't help you.
But if you were selling floor wax and toothpaste you did pretty well. My point is, consumer spending will continue. Marketers will continue to advertise products that consumers need because market share just became a matter of survival. It was during the depression that advertising dollars built a new communications medium and launched a thousand new media stars.

The internet is about to come of age and this is going to have a major impact on what the economy does and how business re-organizes. In a medium that is already showing its ability to create and deliver content on demand it's only a matter of time before ad dollars follow.

Here's the reason this is true. Cost. I don't have to buy air time or print space to tell you who I am or what I do or how I can help you save a ton of money on car insurance. As we reorganize business, this is going to be a huge factor in how we move ahead.

So. Don't Panic.

We all need to re-fit and reorganize around the new technology and new media that is still lagging behind in actual implementation in the United States.

It won't be long until we see "Geico Comedy Theater" and "Microsoft Music Parade"as regular features of online entertainment. And we'll see more websites add content to generate traffic because it costs nothing to distribute online and you can own your brand forever. We'll see more ads - both conventional and online that direct traffic to entertainment sites where branding is part of the product.

A few years ago, Michael Huffington ran the most expensive Senate race in history. After he lost, he left his wife and announced he was gay. That made news, but nobody really remembers him. Nobody would remember who the unfortunate ex-wife was either except that she started a website. You may have heard of, "The Huffington Post".

Arianna Huffington didn't panic. Why should you?

In the next few blog posts, I'm going to describe how I'm re-organizing my business, how I plan to save my customers money and how I'm going to help them create the new, lower cost marketing messages and content they'll need to compete in a tougher market.

I'm also going to describe ways that creative producers can work together to create new products that meet the needs of clients who want to move ahead.

I'm optimistic that we can find the opportunity that this change is going to create.

In the mean time, So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish.

No comments: