How to Build new Products in Digital Media by Ana Jakimovska
Ana Jakimovska has carved out a career in media, working at just about every leading broadcaster in the UK. In this ProductTank London talk she focuses on the importance of knowing your industry and keeping an eye on the wider competition when starting from scratch.
The broadcast industry has been hugely disrupted with the rise of Netflix, YouTube and others who are creating incredibly usable products. As such, new product development within the traditional broadcasters has to be mindful to bring high quality, usable, and resilient products to market ahead of the competition.
Ana delves into two case studies from her time at the BBC and Sky, demonstrating the challenges and opportunities she’s worked on in the broadcast industry.
BBC Case Study
Complexities of Starting From Scratch in an Established Brand
BBC Store was launched by BBC Worldwide and is the second biggest digital product launched by the BBC after the iPlayer. Its purpose was to create a new revenue streams in the digital content space.
Strengths of the product proposition:
- Unique content curated by the BBC
- User response to the proposition
Problems of the product proposition:
- High priority of the brand’s reputation meant early release to market was seen as a risk
- Competitor products (like iTunes/Netflix) meant user expectations of functionality would be high
- Explaining the proposition to users when they’re used to the iPlayer being free
Based on the above, the team put together a set of digital principles for the BBC Store and identified the basic components which were required for their MVP.
Sky Case Study
Changing Face of News Consumption
Innovation was the name of the game in this case study. Broadcasters face three main challenges regarding the news: TV news consumption is in decline; mobile as a platform is now more powerful than TV; millennials are the first generation to consume news on digital platforms more than on TV.
On top of this, at Sky, traditional newsroom processes dictated its news gathering and curation, it was all optimised for TV. Digital assets and content were put online as an afterthought. To improve this, the team worked on innovating the news at Sky.
From hackdays and workshops, the team came up with product concepts which were designed to stretch the limits of Sky’s comfort zone. These included a prototype to democratise the newsroom so that users could say what they were interested in (hated by journalists and users alike!) and a Mario-style game to engage millennials.
In summary, says Ana, the key considerations for new product development should be:
- Clear goals and measurement
- Clear understanding of the context
- Prioritisation of workload / areas to focus on