Bortz Media utilizes its experience in media market analysis and business planning to provide a variety of consulting services to the public broadcasting industry – with a particular focus on the transition to digital broadcasting.
Managing the Digital Transition
On behalf of both national organizations and individual licensees, Bortz Media has assisted more than 20 local public broadcasters in the development of digital television business strategies and service models. In addition, we have supported national organizations in both public television and public radio in evaluating business opportunities, growth prospects and cost factors associated with the digital transition and other strategic initiatives. Multicasting, datacasting, HDTV, interactive/web opportunities and other services have all been assessed at both the national and local levels.
Bortz Media offers the following services to public broadcasters:
Financial Analysis and Business Modeling
Two of the many Bortz Media business planning assignments for public broadcasters have included:
- From 1999 to 2001, Bortz Media completed a comprehensive digital business planning engagement for APTS (funded by the Ford Foundation), assessing new service opportunities and working with individual public television licensees to develop digital service/financial models. Elements of this project include assessment of the overall media environment and its implications for public TV, exploration of digital capacity utilization issues and alternatives, and evaluation of partnership opportunities involving both commercial and noncommercial entities (as well as regional PTV collaboration). Digital transition business models were developed for eight different PTV licensees.
- During 2002, Bortz Media completed a comprehensive digital television cost modeling assessment for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, defining key cost elements and assumptions related to HDTV production, multicast program services, datacasting and interactive television. The model was designed to allow for sensitivity analysis, and to understand the trade-offs between various types of digital content and services at both the national and local level.
Bortz Media’s strategic planning assignments in public broadcasting reflect our long history with the industry:
- A detailed review of public television station operations, focusing on future service and structure options for public television licensees, was undertaken for the Association of America’s Public Television Stations (APTS) in 1991. Comprehensive updates of this study were completed in 1994 and again in 1999.
- For the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Bortz Media completed a three-phase, 15-month study analyzing the prospects for digital audio broadcasting and assessing opportunities and threats for public radio. The study examined digital technology issues, radio market trends, satellite radio competition and potential new service opportunities for public radio.
- Bortz Media completed a comprehensive assessment of issues and opportunities associated with advertising on public television. The study assessed strategic considerations and evaluated impacts on underwriting and membership revenue, leading to the development of both national and station level financial models projecting the net impact of the introduction of advertising.
Assessment of Digital and Related New Business Opportunities
Building on our work for commercial media enterprises, Bortz Media assists public broadcasting entities in assessing and implementing new business opportunities. Examples include:
- For PBS, Bortz Media has completed several assignments including assessing prospects for a PBS cable television network, an evaluation of PBS licensing/merchandising practices, and support regarding DBS carriage negotiations and the economics of DBS service distribution.
- On behalf of APTS, Bortz Media led a public broadcasting working group charged with exploring PTV infrastructure needs and technology-related business opportunities. Through this process, assessments of both datacasting service opportunities and local/national Internet business models were conducted.
Bortz Media offers market research capabilities that can assist public broadcasting organizations in evaluating new initiatives and support strategic decision-making. We have conducted both focus groups and quantitative studies on behalf of public broadcasters in addition to our extensive market research activities with commercial media enterprises. For more information on our market research capabilities, visit the market research section of this website.