Snap Inc VP Content Nick Bell said today that a move into scripted programming should happen “before the end of the year.” Bell made the comments during a keynote session here at the Edinburgh International Television Festival. He called a move to scripted “the next juncture for us” but said the company hasn’t gone down that path yet “because it’s expensive and we want to make sure we understand as much as we can.”
Bell also said he doesn’t see mobile as a threat to traditional television. “People are consuming more and more mobile, so there is more opportunity to join the dots. … My belief is that mobile is not the TV killer.” It’s actually, he opined, “the most complimentary thing to TV that’s ever been around.”
The messaging service has signed deals with such companies as NBCUniversal, Turner, Discovery, the BBC, ABC and MGM over the past year for originals that will reach Snap’s young demo. At the end of last year, it entered an agreement with Disney-ABC TV Group for a Bachelor-themed aftershow, for example.
And that has proved complimentary, Bell said. Snapchat shows “are driving people to TV.” Offshoots of The Voice and The Bachelor have become “a vehicle for people to tune into TV. It’s a means for people who weren’t previously exposed to head in that direction.”
Pointing to his phone, Bell added:”Going forward, this becomes the remote control for your media consumption. The set-top box maybe goes away and the glowing box on the wall remains, and this becomes a way to discover content and help monetize content with better ads.”
Further, he pointed out, “Seventy-five percent of the audience for shows on Snapchat is under the age of 25, so we’re really capturing the audience that is probably not consuming TV at the same rate.”