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Smart technology & local TV by Christopher Walkey W e work with both marketing agencies and SME businesses across the UK and it is vital to our company to predict the digital marketing trends before they happen. Local TV and Smart televisions will have a great say in the way we communicate and throw in to the pot Social Media and we suddenly have the three core elements which will make up television consumer engage over the next few years. At Marketme we strongly believe that on- line browsers and the increasing Smart television viewers will be seeking the best social and video entertainment on-line that is tuned to either their preferred subjects or localised content to their region. Our strong belief in this led us to create the VideoConnected ‘local on-line video channel’ concept which allows for towns and cities across the UK to have their own TV Ready platforms with our vision to stream regionalised content when we go for phase three of the website build. Is Television simply about catching up on your favourite soaps? I am quite sure that many readers will remember when you had to get up off the sofa to change a channel on the television and even then, you only had a choice of three (I am showing my age already)! Since that time we have come a long way to see the enabling of watching any channel internationally at any time or quite simply the ability to have streamed to you any programme when you choose to thanks to Netflix and LoveFilm etc. What we see as a real progression in television technology and the way in which the future household will define ‘television entertainment’ is via Smart TV. Smart televisions now allow for internet access along with dedicated applications for entertainment, engagement and education. Importantly we can also access Social Media accounts to include Facebook, Twitter and Skype easily on these televisions too which highlights the fact that televisions are becoming the centralised entertainment and informatic platform within households. With all this information within one entertainment station, it will fuel consumers appetite for rich, engaging and localised video content accessible easily. Consumers will require not only all the easy to access apps to receive information relating to their favourite topics (as they currently have on their Smart mobile phones), but the ability to visit websites that follow on from television style viewing, being rich in video databases and streaming relevant video content. Why, if you have watched your favourite programme on television would you switch to the internet to access dull and lifeless websites with merely text and images? You will want to be continued to be entertained surely, I mean, you wouldn’t have watched the latest episode of your favourite soap via text of a slide-show - so why put up with that on a website? Whereas years ago you had to wait for a film or episode to be repeated or had to purchase the DVD, we now have content stored on servers or cloud based systems that you can access via paid for or free streaming services. This means that unique and quality video content will be the standard requirement for television viewers, clearly showing that local content popularity will rise. Is this fact? Well, will a repeat of a Carry On movie or an old James Bond film really be enough for the BBC or ITV in years to come? Just go on to the likes of YouTube and you could watch these films in full for free and importantly, do so when you want to. When we look at the progress recently on LocalTV we realise that this focus needs to be placed throughout the internet and even though the likes of YouTube holds a wealth of valuable content, it is generally not search friendly specific to the consumer’s locality or interests. The choice people will look to have will not only be local television, but also local video portals to contain past and present video content as well as dedicated themed video portals from topics such as wine through to paleontology. A company with innovative marketing vision will soon look to create an on-line TV Ready website both showcasing their products and services via video to engage on-line browsers and Smart 68 | TV-BAY MAGAZINE TV-BA073JAN13.indd 68 11/01/2013 14:18