Big 12 TV Deal a Credit to Beebe

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There are crises all over the world. Nuclear meltdowns in Japan. Near-revolt in Libya. Bankrupt European countries. There are so many problems to solve. My idea – send Dan Beebe.

Thanks to the Big 12 TV deal now in negotiations, the Big 12 commissioner is showing he can turn near-disaster into opportunity.

You may have heard that he’s negotiating a new conference TV deal with Fox. That deal is rumored to be $60 million per year. It could also include a conference TV network, even though Texas, and most likely, Oklahoma, won’t play ball on any potential conference cable net.

Think about that for a minute. About a year ago at this time we were all writing about the demise of the Big 12. Nebraska and Colorado were bolting so they could get in on conference TV deals. Texas pretty much blackmailed the Big 12 into giving it more revenue in exchange for staying. Then, the school went and created the Longhorn Network with ESPN, pretty much thumbing their collective nose at the rest of the league. The league was fighting for dear life.

Now, with the potential of this new TV deal, the Big 12 could generate up to $120 million per year for its 10 member schools. I may have forgotten to mention that the league already has a $480 million deal with ABC/ESPN through 2016. With that kind of television revenue, the league looks rock solid to keep on going for a while.

Beebe’s work equates to that fifth down that Colorado got against Missouri back in the 1990s, a down the Buffs turned into a victory. Beebe received one last shot at a Hail Mary and connected.

Remember – this isn’t the Big Ten or the SEC or the Pac-12, where it’s all for one. Those conference networks came together pretty easily because everyone was willing to take an equal piece of the revenue. Beebe had greater limitations.

Revenue sharing in the Big 12 is not equal. Texas gets a larger share, ostensibly because its presence generates more revenue for the rest of the league. That’s hard to argue with. OU and Texas A&M get larger pieces, as well. Then there’s the matter of programming a conference cable network without Texas and, potentially, Oklahoma. Now, the Oklahoma Network and a Big 12 Network aren’t done deals yet, but a conference network would basically be a write-off for Fox, in exchange for the potential to broadcast a block of Big 12 football games on Saturdays and Big 12 basketball games throughout the school year. A deal like this gives Fox more preferential treatment, and the Big 12 more exposure.

So even though there isn’t a level playing field within the conference, and Fox likely won’t get its hands on Texas or Oklahoma programming inventory, Beebe still managed to extort a figure that makes you think there isn’t a budget shortfall in 46 U.S. states. Just amazing.

Now to the next task. Beebe needs to fully preserve the Big 12’s position in college football by adding two teams that would bring the league back to 12 teams. First, go get Houston, which would give the league a Top 10 media market foothold for the first time (though technically it pretty much owns the Dallas-Fort Worth market). I’m not sure who the second school should be. But Beebe has proven pretty crafty so far. After all, he’s about to make sure the Big 12 isn’t going anywhere.

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Satellite Television As a Travel Guide

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Planning a trip can be stressful business since there are so many unpredictable things that can be thrown into your path. There is only so much a travel book can tell you seeing as a lot of the time they are out of date and the people who write them may not have the same interests or budget as you do. One great way to get an idea of where you are going before you get there is to surf around the multitude of channels offered by satellite TV. The travel channel allows viewers to view exotic places from the comfort of their own home and may help them in choosing the destination for their next vacation.

If a location has already been selected then a person can do some quality research while using their television remote as their main tool. Knowing what kinds of clothes to pack is a very important part of planning a successful trip. There is nothing that can ruin a vacation faster than walking into pouring rain when you only have a bag full of shorts and tank tops. With the help of satellite TV you can check the forecast for your destination. Knowing what the upcoming weather is going be like will allow you to plan outfits and outings accordingly.

Knowing a bit about the culture of your vacation spot is another great idea to maximize your time there. Check out the Food Network to see what the local dishes are and what ingredients are popular in the food. Packing little travel size Tabasco bottles might be necessary if the food is known for being a little on the bland side. If the food is fantastic then watching it on television in high definition should get your appetite going, making you all the more excited to get out there and explore the culinary possibilities of your vacation spot.

Being familiar with the history and structure of your travel destination is another great idea. Checking out the History Channel and seeing what amazing information there might be about the foundation and development of a place is a great way to familiarize you with the location’s background. Knowing local customs and holidays can help you plan your trip accordingly so that you can take part in some of the festivities. Satellite TV has a wide range of channels that can educate you about the cultural components of a particular location, giving you a jump start on understanding what fun is waiting for you on the other end of the flight.

Watching some international channels can also help you practice language skills. By watching shows in the language you are traveling to you can get your ear more accustom to the words and sounds. International channels can also help you follow the local politics and sports of the area you are traveling to, providing you with conversation information when interacting with local people. With the enormous range of channels out there you can be nice and prepared for your vacation before ever setting foot on a plane.

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Why Does TV Advertising Cost So Much?

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What is the first thing you do when you get home from work? If you’re honest, you probably switch on the TV (although if you have kids home from school the TV is likely on already). Since black and white images first beamed into our living rooms we’ve been endlessly entertained by the rapidly evolving TV industry. And since the very first broadcast, companies have been vying for attention with ever more creative TV ads. TVs are the most pervasive device in the home, which makes television advertising the most sought after medium, despite the notoriously high advertising costs.

But why is it so expensive?

For starters, you need to hire an advertising agency. Unless your business is TV you probably don’t know what makes television ads tick; you’re also unlikely to have all the relevant facts and figures at your finger tips. Advertising agencies make it their business to know the minutiae that make ads work; such as viewership for particular channels at particular times. Agencies don’t come cheap, but if you want to get your advertising campaign right the cost is worth it.

If you don’t fancy relinquishing total control to an agency you will still have to hire some professionals. For example, you’ll need a script writer, actors, cameramen, light technicians and a director. Then there are other pesky details, such as hiring the venue and caterers and sorting out clothing and accessories. It’s also a good idea to get some input from someone who understands what is and isn’t allowed in an ad; all the legal ramifications. You can see the costs escalating (and why most people choose an advertising agency or media buyer, as all this is included in the fee).

Even if you’re going to be the star of your ad and are confident enough to write your own script most of the costs mentioned above still apply.

Then there is the small matter of buying airtime. According to an article on bizmove.com, the cost of your TV advertising campaign is dependent on two things: the viewership of the programme and the timeslot. Prime time ads, which can be anywhere between 18:00 and 23:00 (a lot depends on the station), will cost a great deal more than ads during the middle of the day. But mid-day slots might suit you, especially if you’re targeting stay-at-home moms or the retired age bracket. Advertising during high profile events, such as sports world cups, will also cost you more than during regular viewing.

Finally, your budget needs to stretch to multiple viewings. No TV ad, no matter how well produced, is effective if it’s only aired once. Advertising experts say that people need to see an ad between five and seven times for it to get their proper attention. But because people don’t always concentrate while ads are on, you’ll need to run it between three and four times a day for several days (read weeks) for it to work.

TV advertising certainly has its advantages, but unless you can afford an extended campaign the costs will outweigh the returns.

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