AI, ML, Data; Scale and Supply Chain; Vendors Out in Force at May 27 HITS Live Event

Beginning at 12:30 p.m. PT May 27, attendees of the Hollywood Innovation and Transformation Summit (HITS) Live event will have four technology session tracks to choose from, detailing the latest vendor offerings and insights for the media and entertainment community.

Here’s a look at what to expect from the “Consumers, Data, AI, and ML” and “CX, Scale and Supply Chain” tracks:

Consumers, Data, AI, and ML

• Alex von Krogh, VP of data sales for Whip Media Group, kicks things off with “Connecting with Consumers with the Right Content During Massive Social Shifts,” a look at how the pandemic is fueling TV viewing and driving dramatic shifts in consumer behavior and content release strategies and windows.

Whip sees a unique opportunity to measure changes in viewing behavior, sentiment and the associated implications on programming choices, theatrical attendance, release windows and streaming services. Adapting to this changing environment requires new approaches to quickly understand why viewers are engaging in content, beyond just traditional viewership metrics, and different ways of interpreting and adjusting to those patterns in real-time, whether that be data-driven or new workflow automation processes.

Look for new first-party research findings leveraging TV Time’s global community of more than 13 million connected users of its TV tracking platform, and an examination of viewer engagement and sentiment in this time of self-isolation.

• The presentation “I Know What You’re Going To Watch Next Summer: 5 New Ways Media Companies Use Machine Learning to Massively Grow Revenues by Decoding & Influencing Viewer Behavior,” will have Shiv Sehgal, CPO for RSG Media, and Shawn Brennan, information architectures sales leader for IBM, share how AI- and ML-driven analytics are busting long-loved myths and giving savvy media companies the radical insights they need to upend how they do business.

Everyone may have the same data, but behavioral audience insights show you how to steal competitors’ viewers and lock them in; how to drive tune-in by throwing away the rulebooks; and how to divert advertisers dollars to your shows.

“In an era of 40-times more bytes of data than there are stars in the observable universe, the RSG and IBM partnership charts a path to growing revenue by lowering the cost of curiosity,” Sehgal said.

• Matt Holzapfel, solutions lead for Tamr, will give attendees a peek into how mastering data is being used in the industry to make the most crucial of decisions, in the presentation “Using Machine Learning to Transform Creative Talent Management.”

In an industry that runs on storytelling, the best talent managers are those who can craft compelling stories to find the right opportunities for their clients. Now, those stories are increasingly informed by immense amounts of data, involving hundreds of datasets, millions of records and billions of data points (think Tweets), from sources inside and outside the business.

By using ML to serve up analytics-ready data from disparate data, creative talent management firms can create very human stories with mutually successful outcomes for clients and media companies–time and time again.

“Get an inside look at how Hollywood is mastering data to make critical business decisions — and fast,” Holzapfel said. “Learn how teams are empowered to spend more time finding results by using machine learning to do the heavy ‘data-lift,’ then turn over the results to their own internal data experts to make it perfect.”

• “Requirement for Success: A Strong Platform and Foundation” has Richard Kroon, technical director for EIDR, and Carrie Moore, VP of product development for Premiere Digital, sharing big news from the two companies.

With the successful launch of its EIDR 2.5 initiative this April, EIDR www.eidr.org kicked off a major platform update and improvement program that will eventually lead to EIDR 3.0. This session will walks attendees through the technology and process improvements delivered with EIDR 2.5, the performance metrics that will measure future enhancements, and the initiatives being considered for EIDR’s future.

CX, Scale and Supply Chain

• Joe Jorczak, head of media and entertainment go-to-market strategy for Zendesk, begins this track with “How COVID is Changing Customer Experience in the Entertainment Space,” which will dive into how the widespread effects of the current health crisis has made clear that the entertainment world is directly impacted.

But it’s not all bad news and not everyone has been affected in the same way. Now more than ever, it has become essential for media providers to quickly adapt in order to keep up with changing consumer expectations and the players who are doing this are reaping the benefits. The need for simple, consistent, omni-channel customer experiences is amplified by volatile demand, changing consumption trends, and a 100% remote workforce brought by the current crisis. It has never been more essential to provide consistent digital experiences that enable your brand to stand out in a post-COVID media landscape. Discover how brands are working to ensure their consistent customer experience aligns with increased viewership.

“Learn how the industry has shifted in a post-COVID-19 world and the business adaptations needed to create an elevated consumer experience that keeps viewers happy and hooked in the binge culture it has created,” Jorczak said. “We’ll show how you can use increased viewership to discover business insights and uncover content trends; keep users engaged when streaming content by utilizing in-app messaging; deploy omnichannel support quickly and strengthen subscriber experiences; and scale subscriber support with AI and help customers help themselves.”

• “Turbo Charge Your Digital Supply Chain to Scale” sees Kunal Shah, VP of software engineering and architecture for Sony New Media Solutions, detailing how a successful digital supply chain will not only meet demands but scale as you grow, keeping pace with increased distribution volumes, delivery deadlines, and satisfying the requirements of all the different streaming platforms, all while ensuring your content is securely stored and readily accessible.

How does a digital supply chain system successfully evolve to accommodate this increasing demand from content partners to meet distribution and monetization goals? Shah will discuss how Sony NMS transformed their platform using cloud technologies, allowing them to quickly adapt to evolving market demands, what they discovered throughout their journey, and the path forward.

“At the core of Sony NMS’ digital supply chain business is the idea that we must successfully evolve with each partner to meet their content distribution goals, allowing them to better capitalize on opportunities for monetization and push the boundaries of customer experience,” Shah said. “Since 2015, cloud technologies have played an increasingly important role at Sony NMS, allowing us to quickly adapt to evolving client and market demands.

“I hope to give attendees insight into this process and how it has allowed Sony NMS to scale reliably and efficiently to reduce friction so that our partners get maximum value from our supply chain.”

• Craig Seidel, SVP of technology for MovieLabs, and Rowan de Pomerai, head of delivery and growth for DPP, will look at the future of the digital supply chain in the presentation “The Key to Surviving the Surge in Streaming: Automate your Supply Chain.”

Digital supply chain standards covering metadata, avails, delivery and QC have gained broad adoption over the last decade. And as homebound viewers have discovered the joys of streaming (all day long), expectations have risen on the entire supply chain to deliver more, and do it better and faster.

Meanwhile, we’re working without the resources typically available to us (e.g., offices, equipment, human contact). Although it may feel like changing the tires while the car is driving, there is no time like the present to evaluate whether you are taking full advantage of the technology resources at your disposal. DPP’s recent findings regarding supply chain standards will be relayed by de Pomerai, and then Seidel and he will talk about where they see the digital supply chain going during the next few years.

• In “Introducing the Audio Business Continuity Alliance (ABCA),” Chris Carey, CRO and managing director of the Americas for IYUNO Media Group, and Mark Howorth, CEO of SDI Media, will unveil the Audio Business Continuity Alliance (ABCA), being organized to establish a collaborative community of artists and companies who provide professional audio services to content creators around the world. The ABCA will administer a registry and certification program for voice talent professionals who wish to ensure they are equipped with the necessary capabilities to continue working, during a disruption to normal business operations. This session introduces the ideas and objectives of this new, not-for-profit industry association.

The May 27 HITS Live event is the industry’s annual gathering of CIOs and top technology minds, and will tackle the quickly shifting IT needs of studios, networks and media service providers, along with how M&E vendors are stepping up to meet those needs. The all-live, virtual, global conference will allow for real-time Q&A, one-on-one chats with other attendees, and more.

HITS Live is presented by Microsoft Azure, with sponsorship by RSG Media, Signiant, Tape Ark, Whip Media Group, Zendesk, Eluvio, Sony, Avanade, 5th Kind, Tamr, EIDR and the Trusted Partner Network (TPN). The event is produced by the Media & Entertainment Services Alliance (MESA) and the Hollywood IT Society (HITS), in association with the Content Delivery & Security Association (CDSA) and the Smart Content Council.

For more information, click here. To Register, click here. To become a sponsor and participate in the event, contact Evie Silvers at [email protected]