December 17, 2005
Analysis: Newly born Viacom is ready to deliver

An excellent article from The Hollywood Reporter covers Viacom's rapid adaptation to the transmedia mentality. Viacom CEO and President Tom Freston has had a lot of forward-thinking soundbites lately, a few of which are worth repeating here:

"'It's really so fantastic. The audience has been leading this life we have been baiting them with for 25 years with more fragmented media,' Freston says. 'They are into multicasting, and now they are having more and more control over what they want to do. So they are driving the process. Simultaneously, the advertisers, because of the technology, are able to be much more creative and efficient about what they can do. We can be much more accountable to advertisers and can sell to them on that basis.'

The cable networks that wrote the rule book on targeting niche markets are setting a new pace for exploiting the power of the MTV, VH1, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and Paramount Pictures brands in new places -- from ringtones and cell phone features to integrating video clips in e-mails and compiling electronic scrapbooks.

'Content providers are like arms dealers today,' Freston says. 'We can sell pieces of what we do to a lot of places. We don't want to impinge on the integrity of the 24-hour cable service where it all starts.'"

Read the full article: Newly born Viacom is ready to deliver