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– by Joseph Jammer Medina

The world of TV is going through a time of rapid change. Less than 10 years ago, watching through your cable box was the norm, and the business had functioned pretty much like it had for decades. Sure, Hulu had just come out, but it hadn’t quite taken hold of the industry just yet.

Things have changed since then. A lot of content has moved to streaming, and though ads have been cut a bit, they’ve slowly risen in runtime per hour — at least on the streaming front. After swinging to 30-second ad times on streaming service per commercial break, things have gotten closer to the commercial runtime of standard cable. Is this the industry just finding its natural profitable equilibrium? Can we expect ad times to skew closer to a quarter of an hour in ever form?

Perhaps. But it sounds like one network is working hard to combat that. According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Fox Networks Group’s ad sales chief, Joe Marchese, has set a goal for the network to reduce TV ad time to two minutes per hour by 2020. For reference, as of right now, the average ad time an hour on broadcast is over 13 minutes. That’s quite the substantial drop.

Speaking in an email to the outlet, Ed Davis, chief product officer for ad sales at Fox Networks Group said:

“The two minutes per hour is a real target for Fox, and also our challenge for the industry.Creating a sustainable model for ad-supported storytelling will require us all to move.”

Of course, this change wouldn’t come without its challenges. In order for this to be accomplished, the industry would need to change the way it buys media. Rather than selling ads based on the number of views, Marchese hopes to sell ads based on the time spent with content.

One buyer at the event said the quote is more aspirational than an actual declaration.

“His whole closing section was about the value of the commercial and if they can provide more value by limiting commercials and creating new commercialization it will be better for networks’ health and better for advertisers.”

Do you see a world where we get two minutes of ads per hour of TV? Let us know your thoughts down below!

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SOURCE: Wall Street Journal

Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.
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