Move or adapt

The winners and losers in this coming fan-centric, direct-to-consumer world have yet to be determined. What is clear today is the list of requirements for success: attributes that will excite users — more customization, control, and perceived value — and distinctive, habit-forming brands and experiences that turn commodity eyeballs into devoted fans. Transitioning to a more direct-to-consumer world will not be easy for many media companies. Existing capabilities need to be reimagined to stress content development, user insights, digital distribution, fan management, and mobile advertising sales, as well as app design, data science, and new business models. This will require sustained senior leadership and greater investment in content, technology, and experience. It will mean making tough decisions regarding brands and businesses not associated with a meaningful fan base. Considering the unimaginably fast clock speed in entertainment and media today, E&M companies cannot afford any delay.

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