To the list of historic firsts today I would like to add another. No, it’s not as important as the obvious history that will be made but I think it can be seen as an historic moment nonetheless. You see today, Inauguration Day, is the first day of a new Presidency but it’s also the first great test of channel preferences. Of WHAT??!!? Channel preferences, dear readers. Today may be the first time when all of the channels through which people consume media are focused on a singular event. This interests me because suddenly the unique access one channel often has over another to a piece of content is pretty much removed. Check this out:
- Hulu will pick up Fox’s live stream of the festivities beginning 12 pm ET.
- CBSNews.com will deliver a webcast of the Inauguration anchored by Katie Couric, commencing at 10:00 pm ET, immediately following the CBS News primetime special on Tuesday evening (9:00-10:00 pm, ET/PT).
- CBSNews.com and CBS Mobile are also hosting a UGC contest inviting users to submit videos about the challenges their own communities are facing.
- Joost is partnering with CBS to provide live-streaming of the network’s Inauguration Day coverage.
- ABC News Digital will provide extensive coverage of the address on ABCNews.com from 11:30 am ET, presented in 16×9 widescreen format.
- NBC‘s education unit is adding to the network’s coverage of the event with a selection of quizzes and apps testing
That is just a sample. Obviously, the Twitter community, the social nets, the video channels, and dozens hundreds of other outlets will be focused on this event as well. Same story – but hopefully differentiated content, different channels, different methods of organization. For example, Hulu has an Obama page with more than 200 clips of commentary along with all 9 of the President-elect’s Weekly Addresses. They’ve added a collection of inaugural speeches from past presidents, dating back to William McKinley. Joost’s Everything Obama channel includes Obama’s Victory Speech as well as other interviews.
I’m also interested to see how each channel tries to garner revenue today and which marketers try to send a channel-appropriate message to consumers. It should be a good test both of how consumers’ media habits are shifting and how marketers’ strategies are shifting with them.
How are you watching today’s events? Are you seeing any marekting efforts that you think are noteworthy?