There may be more consumers with “football on their phones” this NFL season than even DirecTV could have imagined, if Time Warner Cable doesn’t settle their dispute with CBS very soon. If you are a Time Warner Cable subscriber in LA, Dallas or New York you may have noticed CBS (including Showtime) is conspicuously missing. The blackout is the result of a dispute over retransmission costs in where CBS has demanded an increase in fees in all three markets and Time Warner has refused, claiming the request would amount to a 600% higher rate than in any other markets.
Regardless of the obvious inconvenience for advertisers and media planners who were suddenly left with a gaping hole in three of the top U.S. markets, Time Warner’s CBS strike could have a lasting effect on their customer loyalty in an already fledgling industry, while competing cable provider DirecTV may reap the benefits.
The chances that Time Warner will fail to end the dispute with CBS before the regular NFL football season begins is unlikely. (Although the timing of the ad featuring Payton and Eli Manning rapping the latest promotion for DirecTV’s football package may mean significant losses for Time Warner).
The moral of the story is that brands are only as strong as the consumers who support them. That’s the deal. Whether or not CBS was egregious in their request for higher fees, Time Warner seemed to have ignored the damage to subscribers in three of their most important markets – not to mention that messing with a Texan’s chance to celebrate the Cowboys is darn close to sacrilegious!
Content is king and those who want to consume it will find an avenue or channel to view at their convenience with minimal difficulty and interference — with or without a cable provider. Therefore, an investment in loyalty is imperative and Time Warner is going to have to take the money they gain from a new agreement with CBS and spend it earning back consumer trust.
DirecTV Promotes Their NFL Season Package to Subscribers With This Hilarious Rap Video Featuring Eli and Payton Manning
[youtube height=”HEIGHT” width=”WIDTH”]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtuGXO6d4l8[/youtube]