Looking back on 21 years of successful growth and development, PROVYS are celebrating this magical anniversary with a new logo which encapsulates all the features of a modern and progressive software solution company. The icon on the left represents the growth of PROVYS from a rising star at the turn of the century to a global player today. Our CEO, Josef Vasica, especially liked the logo as it reminded him of an eagle’s claw firmly holding the company’s achievements and market share. The bold yellow letters indicate a solid yet bright base for future development.
"We are delighted to present our new logo which will come into general use on 1 September 2018" Josef Vasica, CEO
Picture: With thanks to Richard Schiller's contribution to Broadcast Engineer's Reference Book
At 37,000 feet, flying home from Telemundo Show, the largest annual July broadcasting convention in Mexico, and thinking of my next trip to IBC, my mind drifted, like a cloud, as I contemplated the similarities between the broadcasters‘ fundamental four agreements and the best selling Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, master and shaman of the Toltec philosophy.
Let us first consider all four of the Toltec agreements according to Don Miguel Ruiz. They are:
"Be impeccable with your word" "Don't take anything personally" "Don't make assumptions" "Always do your best"
Ruiz teaches us that these agreements formed the four pillars governing the behaviour of the Toltec civilisation. And let us now consider the four fundamental agreements every broadcaster must comply with in order to survive and succeed in this highly competitive business. They are:
- A licence with the appropriate licensing authority - Commercial agreements with the rights owners - Commercial agreements with advertisers - A quality-based unwritten agreement to attract potential viewers (free-to-air) or a commercial agreement (pay TV)
Opening my second small bottle of wine, courtesy of a delightful air-hostess, it occurred to me just how close these two sets of agreements are and how we may benefit from applying the Toltec philosophy to modern broadcasting practice. And so, I would like to share my thoughts with you and invite you to study the attached picture.
For a broadcaster, the critical first step is to obtain a licence from the government or the licensing authority, for without this, nothing else can proceed. An important part of the application procedure is a long term plan covering the general philosophy and direction of the channel which must be submitted for consideration by the licensor. This long term plan can be generated by various means utilising, for example available capital, market needs, local knowledge, but the final version will undoubtedly benefit from the guiding hand of existing scheduling systems, with their advanced scheduling modules which contain budgeting and multi-versioning. It almost goes without saying that the Toltec agreement to be impeccable with your word will govern this aspect of broadcast licensing, because without such impeccability, the licensing authority is unlikely to approve and/or prolong the appropriate licence.
Almost no modern broadcaster can survive solely on their own content, and in order to create a full schedule, it is necessary to purchase external content. Rights owners are always sensitive to unauthorised use of their intellectual rights and transgressing these legal constraints can prove expensive for the unwary or careless broadcaster. The Toltecs teach us not to take things personally and it is critical for broadcasters to realise that the owners of external content expect an agreement and payment before one can use the essence, even if it is already in the library. And to ensure that such errors do not occur, it is wise to use a professional rights management tool. Do not take this personally.
Without exception, all broadcasters require funding, and the principle source for most stations is advertising. Broadcasters sell commercial space to agents who arrange to fill the capacity with appropriate advertising, which of course, raises revenue. However it is not so simple that it can be ignored and it is critical that broadcasters do not assume that they have all the answers, when in fact, they may not have all the questions. The process of raising revenue from advertising requires hard work, market research and constant updating of information, all of which can be assisted by professional ad sales tools. The Toltecs teach us not to make assumptions and it is very clear how appropriate this guidance is in this context. Errors can be expensive so decisions should be based upon facts and not assumptions.
The acquisition and maintenance of good audience statistics is not a given but is solely dependent on continuous high quality programming. The broadcasting business is extremely competitive and hundreds of channels are just waiting to steal your viewers. The Toltecs teach us to always do our best and this principle is the key to getting and keeping the audience share high.
And so we see how the ancient wisdom of the Toltecs is still valid for modern day commercial operations, in this case broadcasting. We would like to conclude this article by utilising the fourth agreement one more time and recommending that broadcasters can always do their best by establishing a long term partnership with Provys whose suite of modules can assist all processes mentioned in this article. A long list of broadcasters can attest to the fact that Provys have the most effective solutions for the 21st century, but we must never lose sight of the Toltec guidance from 1,000 years ago. We trust you are all in agreement.
Relaxing in the not-too-comfortable departure lounge at Las Vegas International Airport on my way home from NABSHOW 2018, my mind drifted back 25 years to my first NAB and I began to contemplate the numerous changes which the broadcasting industry had experienced during this quarter of a century. Unlike the lounge, which still retains its original sparse atmosphere, and is slightly poorer these days having lost the excitement of the pumping and tinkling of the jackpot coin payouts from the fruit machines, the broadcast industry has experienced massive changes in both technological and financial considerations. Back in the old days, the industry was privileged to enjoy good margins on their exclusive, tailor-made, proprietary gizmos giving rise to extravagant trade shows, boundless hospitality and entertainment and a guaranteed bottom line surplus to keep the shareholders satisfied. The generosity did not end there but was even reflected in the free-of-charge service arrangements which accompanied the afore-mentioned gizmos. A number of famous global suppliers actually pampered their clients to such a degree that when service charges for support started to become a standard part of the supply package, much to their surprise, their clients tended to vote with their feet in order to seek continued free support elsewhere.
Wake up from the dreams
As we wake up from the dreams of these good old days, we see a more business-like approach within the broadcast industry driven by the hard reality of the need to make dependable profits and undertake continual R&D. Technological demand is also continually shifting in line with these changes as broadcasters themselves also have to face these hard realities. I spent most of my time at NAB on the Provys stand and I attended many of the client meetings. I was continually impressed by the consistency of the requirements put forward by broadcasters visiting the stand, in particular, the need for greater automation and improved efficiency. This exactly dovetails with the comments of Lorenzo Zanni, Lead Analyst with IABM, in their recent industry forecasts. In a nutshell, broadcasters simply need to do more with less.During the show, Provys were presenting three lectures daily titled: “Be on the ball - operating a sports channel from production up to transmission”; “Playlist in 5 minutes - automate the scheduling of your channels” and “Content first - optimise multichannel use, linear and especially nonlinear!”, topics which exactly reflected IABM’s forecasts and visiting clients’ expressed requirements. “Be on the ball” covered the management of sports broadcasting and how to plan live matches, particularly the scheduling of resources, together with the scheduling of live broadcasting of these events. The presentation, “Playlist in 5 minutes”, showed how easy it would be to use an advanced broadcast management system instead of the current manual, time-consuming and often very boring methods. The “Content first” lecture demonstrated how to keep pace with the changes in this era of constantly evolving markets. Sabina Svidova, Business Analyst at Provys, one of the presenters, explained:
““We wanted to highlight real life experiences from the field in our presentations. For example, a case study based on Norway TV 2 showed how they successfully monetise their content across channels and paid platforms. Another case study showed our experience of the demanding management at BT Sport.””
In the time that I have been attending, NAB has come a long way from the early relaxed days when cell phones and credit cards were scarce executive toys. Today’s visitor is professionally focused on finding the best, state-of-the-art solutions among the myriad stands and not always totally reliable exhibitors. And to this Sabina adds: “Offering the best solutions to the industry, with the highest levels of efficiency and ongoing support, yet with a human face, is, and always has been our principal objective”.
As every ship’s captain recognises, it is very important to know exactly where we are heading, together with how, when and at what cost. Successful navigation depends upon having our voyage fully charted or scheduled as we say in the broadcasting industry. It goes without saying that good charts help the captain to avoid icebergs, and good and efficient scheduling ensures maximum viewer share and profitability for broadcasters.
The big question is, therefore, how do we get this efficiency into our multi-channel, 24/7 operations? As you will see from the heading, we are prompted toward the most sophisticated software solution which has been designed over many years to consolidate the best broadcasting practices from around the world. This solution can create complex, precise and time-code accurate broadcasting schedules within minutes and we will now explain the magic behind this apparently immodest claim.
The first point, in order to take advantage of the automation power inherent within the solution, is that operators can define rules for standard and repetitive tasks thereby removing the need for manual involvement in a great number of operations. Time slots, including break patterns, can be filled instantly and automatically without the risk of error which is unavoidable in human operations. For example, hand on heart, how many times have we seen promos for events that have already happened?
The second point, which is financially critical, is the import of pre-sold advertisements into the schedule including all the necessary adjustments required to accommodate difficult demands from advertisers whilst still adhering to time-code precise schedules. Again, most of this can be automatic according to pre-defined rules. This is very easy when using the in-built ad sales module, but also quite simple for third-party ad sales systems as interfaces are regularly created.
The next point
The next major point is secondary graphics, a popular, valuable and continually developing tool to lock in the viewers’ attention. Most common amongst these are logos, text announcements, commercial graphics, and simple messages such as: “you are watching…”, “coming next”, “stay with us for…”. An unlimited number of such graphics can be scheduled automatically and risk-free according to any pre-defined rules.
As Wendy Vytiskova, Pre-sales Consultant at Provys says: “One of the most valuable tools which we have recently created within the heart of our system is the Promo-Auto-Booking facility which automatically ensures that any available capacity, any single frame in fact, within the schedule is efficiently allocated for self-promotion, even on a cross-channel basis. The magic behind this trick is that the system utilises GRP (Gross Rating Point) forecasts to ensure that any particular self-promotion is seen by the required targeted viewers. This maximises the efficiency and effectiveness of self-promotion activities.”
Furthermore, this advanced scheduling module naturally allows the planning of non-linear content presentation using the common metadata. As an example of this, TV 2 Norway have exploited this functionality to massively increase their audience share which obviously has a positive impact on their revenues.
Finally, the cost aspects of this solution are very reasonable due to the fact that licences are not limited to any number of channels but can be utilised for expansion without additional cost. Additionally, different budget versions for different schedules can be easily created, compared and selected in order to minimise costs.In conclusion, the automation and error-free facilities within the Provys scheduling module allow broadcasters, public, private, large or small, to free valuable time for their professional staff to concentrate on new and interesting areas of responsibility including expansion.
TV Executives! Not to be missed at NAB 2018: N4124 This year, at the NABSHOW Broadcast Engineering and IT Conference, Harald Hovdevik and Kjell Ove Skarsbo from TV 2 Norway will present how their Greenfield Playout Programme revolutionises content handling. The presentation will be held on April 7th, 2018, at 3:20 p.m., room N260-A. From Monday on, at the exhibition booth N4124, 3 p.m. every afternoon, Sabina Svidova, Provys, will demonstrate how TV 2 successfully monetises their content.The Provys solution allows TV companies to plan their programme offerings in one integrated software system. It can be used throughout the entire broadcasting process, from booking some production equipment, or ordering a new blockbuster movie, until the finished product goes on air. The architect and system integrator of the Provys solution for TV 2 is Mediability (a highly regarded international provider of products, solutions and support for the broadcast and media industries) who have been central in creating this new chapter of Nordic broadcasting history.
The latest developments of our unique integrated software solutions for media will be on show from April 9th at PROVYS Stand N4124 at NAB in the Las Vegas Convention Centre. PROVYS is an ideal solution for broadcasters who schedule and deliver programmes for one or more TV or radio channels. PROVYS optimises station workflows, improves management efficiency and facilitates information sharing among producers, channel managers, schedulers, media managers, air-time sellers, VOD publishers, and all their teams.
PROVYS is renowned for its high stability compared to other software systems. PROVYS is designed to serve reliably in a multi-user environment. PROVYS is trustworthy, inspiring the confidence of both private and nationwide public TV and radio organisations. PROVYS is the secure central metadata database enjoyed by many media companies. PROVYS is built on a robust database logic and ensures long-term usability in media management. PROVYS is the power for television company growth.PROVYS is based on Oracle, one of the most successful IT names in the global media business.
To pre-arrange a demo at a time to suit your convenience, please e-mail us at email@example.com or call +420 234 066 149. Come and meet our team at at NAB 2017. We look forward to welcoming you there.
September is just around the corner, which means only one thing. All companies prominent in the broadcasting industry are getting ready for the International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. PROVYS is no exception, so all the latest from our unique integrated software solutions for media will be on show from September 15, 2017 on the PROVYS stand, #2.B49 at RAI Amsterdam.PROVYS is an ideal solution for broadcasters who schedule and deliver programmes for one or more TV or radio channels. PROVYS optimises station workflows, improves management efficiency and facilitates information sharing among producers, channel managers, schedulers, media managers, air-time sellers, VOD publishers, and all their teams.Our new motto is "Efficiency with a human face", i.e. even though we impose efficiency on broadcasting workflows, we still enjoy being human and we love to see happy customers!To pre-arrange a demo at a time to suit your convenience, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +420 234 066 149. Come and meet our team at the PROVYS stand #2.B49.
“We look forward to welcoming you there!”
Also, don't forget to join us for a glass of famous Czech beer during our Customer Appreciation Happy Hour, which takes place at our stand on Monday, September 18, from 5pm.
The latest developments of our unique integrated software solutions for media will be on show from April 24th at PROVYS Stand N5316 at NAB in the Las Vegas Convention Centre.
Why it is worth visiting PROVYS Booth
We shall be delighted to share with you our latest experience with our ongoing projects and show you why PROVYS has set the Gold Standard in broadcast management. What makes PROVYS the Gold Standard ?
“We look forward to welcoming you there.”
PROVYS is renowned for its high stability compared to other software systems. PROVYS is designed to serve reliably in a multi-user environment. PROVYS is trustworthy , inspiring the confidence of both private and nationwide public TV and radio organisations. PROVYS is the secure central metadata database enjoyed by many media companies. PROVYS is built on a robust database logic and ensures long-term usability in media management. PROVYS is the power for television company growth. PROVYS is based on Oracle, one of the most successful IT names in the global media business.
To pre-arrange a demo at a time to suit your convenience, please e-mail us at email@example.com or call +420 234 066 149.
Come and meet our team at the PROVYS Gold Stand(ard) #N5316 at NAB 2017.