Forecasting viewership is critical to revenue flow in the world of cable television, but one of the “Big Three” television networks didn’t have the analytics tools it needed to do so accurately or efficiently.
Research teams at each of the company’s subsidiary cable networks were responsible for producing viewership forecasts to be used by Sales for long-range planning, as well as for budgeting and prediction of ad inventories.
A challenge faced by this major television network in building this platform was that viewership is unpredictable, and condensing all of each channel’s viewership data into actionable analysis was a lengthy process that often depended more on intuition and domain knowledge than hard data.
This major network was looking for a partner who could help them quickly develop a new analytics platform. They were attracted by Stride's speciality in Agile methodology and ability to assemble a cross-functional team of product managers, designers, and developers who could progressively identify and deliver business value.
“Stride stood out because they put an emphasis on delivery instead of hourly rates,” recalls the Program Manager. “They focused on continuous delivery and rapid prototyping, which is what we really needed."
Quickly develop a new analytics platform
Implement Agile methodology
Understand the team’s needs by spending time observing their current workflow, pain points, and workaroundsIncrease transparency within the development process
Create a successful workflow between the data science and app development teams by designing and executing a customized Agile process tailored for the company
Stride Consulting and the network launched a polished analytics platform with the ability to drill down into granular views, zoom out for holistic views, and adjust baselines in accordance with new information, making it far easier to align ad inventory. But perhaps even more importantly, the tool has taken a cumbersome forecasting process that used to take six weeks and made it more agile and adaptive, empowering researchers to turn new forecasts around in just one week.
Throughout the project, from start to finish, Stride leveraged the practice of rapid visual prototyping to validate features and functionality before committing to development. This process helped the team launch an accurate, efficient, and user-friendly platform that gave researchers easily customizable displays of viewership data within weeks instead of months. It was a breakthrough piece of software found nowhere else in the industry — one with the potential to save the company millions in lost revenue.
“Stride’s recommendations made the Agile process work for us. It’s even changed our approach to how we recruit — we used to seek out new hires based on their technology expertise, but today we look for people who specialize in solving specific problems. It’s completely transformed the way we work for the better.”