Content Innovation: A Conversation with Leaders from Scripps, AMC and Discovery
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Terra Mrkulic
By Terra Mrkulic,
Social Media & Content Marketing Director,
FreeWheel

On Thursday, October 29th, FreeWheel was pleased to sponsor another insightful Paley Dialogue on the topic of content innovation, featuring industry leaders Kenneth Lowe, Chairman, President and CEO, Scripps Networks Interactive; Josh Sapan, President and Chief Executive Officer, AMC Networks Inc.; and David Zaslav, President and CEO, Discovery Communications.

(Left to Right) Kenneth Lowe, CEO of Scripps Networks Interactive; Josh Sapan, CEO of AMC Networks; David Zaslav, President and CEO of Discovery Communications; and Mark Robichaux, Editorial Director, Television Group, NewBay Media

(Left to Right) Kenneth Lowe, CEO of Scripps Networks Interactive; Josh Sapan, CEO of AMC Networks; David Zaslav, President and CEO of Discovery Communications; and Mark Robichaux, Editorial Director, Television Group, NewBay Media

The panel discussion, moderated by Mark Robichaux, Editorial Director, Television Group, NewBay Media, discussed at length the challenges of publishing quality content in a time when the industry is changing at lightning speed. Never before have consumers had so many great programs to choose from, and so many ways to watch their favorite shows.  As Ken Lowe so concisely put it, “Wherever you want our content you should be able to access it.”

Ken Lowe, Chairman, President, and CEO, Scripps Networks Interactive

Ken Lowe, Chairman, President, and CEO, Scripps Networks Interactive

The panelists agreed that innovation in content doesn’t just come from taking advantage of technological advancements. As Lowe pointed out, “To innovate now is to use technology, but not let tech drive what we do.”

To his point, it was noted that it’s the changing behaviors of viewers that are spurring change in the industry. For example, David Zaslav shared how Discovery pivoted into global sports programming after evidence showing live sports is a major draw for viewers.

David Zaslav, President and CEO, Discovery Communications

David Zaslav, President and CEO, Discovery Communications

These publishers are united in their understanding of the importance of taking more ownership over the content they are publishing, as well as paying attention to the need for relevant, quality storytelling on the global stage.  Josh Sapan shared with the packed room that AMC is more and more frequently choosing to own the programs they make which results in more diversity in revenue, “And that’s a really good thing,” he added.

Ken Lowe revealed that Scripps owns 95% of their content as that supports their mission to remain true to who they are as a brand, “We have been innovative from day one. Our focus is to build quality brands with great storytelling.”

Josh Sapan, President & Chief Executive Officer, AMC Networks Inc.

Josh Sapan, President & Chief Executive Officer, AMC Networks Inc.

Many more insights were revealed in the hour long program, including thoughts on OTT, global challenges, content measurement, and how Millennials change the game. Catch the recorded session to get the full picture:

 

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Join FreeWheel at the Paley International Council Summit, November 19 & 20, 2015! This year’s program will include some of the most influential media luminaries and leaders, including Tim Armstrong, Mike Hopkins, James Murdoch, and Marni Walden.

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 All Image Credits: Paley Center for Media

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