PACE president Rowena-Capulong Reyes, College of Holy Spirit Manila president Wynna Marie Medina, ABS-CBN president and CEO Carlo Katigbak, and this writer sign a memorandum of agreement at the ABS-CBN compound in Quezon City.
Digital media open opportunities for young content creators
KAPAMILYA DAY - Kane Errol Choa (The Philippine Star) - April 3, 2019 - 12:00am

Digital media have enabled everyone to become content creators and digital publishers, but the key to success remains to be understanding your audiences.

This was emphasized by digital experts and content creators in a forum during ABS-CBN’s Pinoy Media Congress that was attended by more than 1,500 students at the College of Holy Spirit in Manila and the University of San Agustin in Iloilo City via an interactive live broadcast.

One of the panelists was ABS-CBN business unit head Ginny Ocampo, who now also serves the company as content management head of iWant.

iWant is ABS-CBN’s over the top platform that adds to the broadcast pioneer’s growing list of digital properties as it transitions into a digital company.

With Rev. Fr. Frederick Comendador, president of University of San Agustin, and Derek Alviola of PACE during the signing of MOA at the University of Iloilo.

Ginny said they have been working with content creators of ABS-CBN TV shows, Star Cinema, Black Sheep Films and independent producers to meet the demands of young audiences.

“We have the experience and we know the Filipino audiences, but the question is ‘are all our content relevant to the different generations of audiences?’ The young audiences have transitioned to the digital platforms and we have to be relevant,” said Ginny.

iWant head Elaine Uy-Casipit told the delegates that they used to market to the core TV older viewers when iWant started as a catch-up for ABS-CBN shows that they missed on television. 

iWant head Elaine Uy-Casipit says iWant has become a playground for content creators.

With the relaunch of iWant last November, Elaine said they streamed several new originals, both movies and series, including the much-talked-about Glorious, which remains to be the most viewed original content on iWant.

“When we tried and experimented with several originals, we started capturing the younger audience,” she said. “We have been growing that market so we can experiment with several more content.”

iFlix country manager Sherwin dela Cruz said they use available data to create content for a particular market and recognize that Filipino audiences are largely looking for local content.

iFlix country manager Sherwin dela Cruz says iFlix is investing in a wide range of content offerings like the movie Mystified.

“We think of the customers. We are a tech company trying to be more content driven. The best way to learn is to do trials. Be agile. We make nine out of 10 mistakes, but we will be there on the 10th time. We keep on churning content — shorts, long form, movies, series,” he said. 

In the case of the Kwentong Jollibee series, its head of brand communications, PR and digital marketing Arline Adeva said they thought of utilizing the treasure trove of stories that they have witnessed in their stores over the years and level up their advertising by going into long-form videos on digital.

“Our fans were accumulating on Facebook. We had a captured market already, but we were not sure if people would be willing to watch the videos because they were long,” Arline shared. “We learned that if your content is engaging enough, they will watch. It is a great way to engage your market. We love the memes also because it shows how Filipinos are engaged with our content.”

Jollibee AVP Arline Adeva says Jollibee engages its audiences with stories that resonate with their experiences.

With the increasing demand for more content on digital, it is an exciting time for young students who may have interesting concepts and stories that they want to pitch. 

More doors for opportunities have been open for them to collaborate with industry professionals and have their pitches produced. 

Sherwin said they would venture into co-productions as they plan to offer 50 titles this year, a rewards program and gamification.

Ginny shared that iWant is producing 40 original titles this year, including Babae sa Septic Tank 3, a documentary on the TNT Boys and the highly-acclaimed Quezon’s Game, which has won 20 awards in the US and Canada.

iWant collaborates with both veteran producers and younger creators, says iWant content management head Ginny Ocampo.

When asked by the student delegates if they are open to entertaining concepts, Ginny said, “iWant is open to all aspiring writers. We are open to co-producing with students.”

The ABS-CBN Pinoy Media Congress is an annual conference in partnership with the Philippine Association of Communication Educators and brings together leading media practitioners, communication professors and students to discuss various topics and trends in media and communication.

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